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HRLR: Rule changes 2013
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Law and Interpretation Changes 2013 Changes to Law - 2013

Ball in Touch or Touch in Goal of Dead in Goal (Section 9)

A player is deemed to be in touch if any part of his body touches the touch line or anything outside of the playing field. Similarly, a player is deemed to be touch in goal or dead in goal if any part of his body touches the touch in goal or dead ball line or anything outside the field of play in those areas. If a player who is in touch, touch in goal or dead in goal touches a moving ball then the team who kicked the ball or knocked on are responsible for the ball going out of play. However, if the ball is stationary in the field of play and is then touched by a player who is in touch, touch in goal or dead in goal then that player is responsible for the ball going dead. The Law will be written as follows:

Ball in touch

1. The ball is in touch when it or a player in contact with it touches the touch line or the ground beyond the touch line or any object on or outside the touch line except when a player, tackled in the field of play, steps into touch as he regains his feet in which case he shall play the ball in the field of play.

Jumping player knocks ball back

The ball is in touch if a player jumps from touch and while off the ground touches the ball. The ball is not in touch if during flight it crosses the touch line but is knocked back by a player who is off the ground after jumping from the field of play.

Touch in-goal

2. (a)The ball is in touch in goal when it or a player in contact with it touches the touch in goal line, or any object on or outside the touch in goal line.

Dead in goal

2. (b)The ball is dead in goal when it or a player in contact with it touches the dead ball line or any object on or outside the dead ball line.

Points of entry

3. When a ball has entered touch or touch in-goal, the point of entry shall be taken as the point at which the ball first crossed the touch or touch in- goal 

Ball back

4. If the ball is kicked by or bounces off a player in a forward direction (except from in-goal – Section 8 No.4 (e) and it goes into touch on the full, a scrum is formed where contact with the ball was made except after the fifth play the ball (but not nearer than twenty metres to the touch line or ten (10) metres to the goal line) – (see Section 12).

Touch from penalty

5.

6.

7.

If the ball is kicked into touch from a penalty kick the game is restarted by a free kick ten meters in-field opposite the point of entry into touch (see Section 13).

Scrum on ‘20’ 6. Other than as outlined in paras. 4 and 5 above, the game is restarted after the ball has gone into touch by forming a scrum twenty meters in-field opposite the point of entry into touch but not nearer than ten (10) meters to the goal line – (see Section 12)

In all aspects of general play, a player who does not deliberately play at the ball (e.g. ricochet or rebound) will not be disadvantaged by a consequent restart of play when the ball has gone dead or into touch.

NOTES

Player not ‘object’

1 and 2. A player is not considered to be an “object”. For example, the ball is not in touch when the player in possession, himself being in the field of play is in contact with another player who is in touch.

Ball dead

1. Where the ball which is stationary in the field of play or the in-goal area comes in contact with a player in touch, touch in-goal or over the dead ball line, the ball is deemed to have been made dead by that player.

Position of Penalty Awarded at a 20m Restart. (Section 8, Law 8)

Currently, any offence that occurs at a 20m restart will result in a penalty being taken at the centre of the 20 metre line regardless of where the offence takes place. The 20 metre restart differs to other restarts in that the ball is in play as soon as it is kicked as opposed to other restarts where the ball is only in play once it has travelled 10 metres.

The most common penalty would be one for the tackling team being offside which, if it occurred in general play, would normally be awarded where the player should have been. It is therefore a disadvantage to the ball carrying team if they then go back to the 20 metre line to receive their penalty. The proposal therefore is to write Section 8, Law 8 as:

Penalties – where taken 


8. A penalty kick resulting from an offence at the kick off shall be taken from the centre of the halfway line. Any penalty kick arising from the restarting of play from an optional kick on the 20m line shall be taken where the offence takes place. Any penalty kick arising from any other 20 metre restart shall be taken from the centre of the 20m line.

A penalty kick resulting from any offence at the drop out from between the posts shall be taken from the centre of the line drawn parallel to and ten metres from the goal line.

Changes to Interpretations Late Challenge on the Kicker

A late challenge on the kicker will no longer result in an automatic sin bin for the player who tackled late. The referee will still have the option to penalise, sin bin or dismiss the player if he sees it as appropriate.

Calling Held if a Player is dragged

The referee will call held if a player is being dragged when there is more than one tackler involved. The referee will call held once he sees one of the tacklers (where there is more than one tackler involved in the tackle) take up a position where he is holding up the player and moving backwards towards the touchline or his own in goal area. If the player continues to drag after “held has been called he will be penalised.

Referee Signal for Team Caution

The referee no longer needs to inform the captain verbally that his team has been placed on a caution. In order to keep the game moving, the referee will inform the team and spectators that a team has been placed on caution for a period of time by pointing at that team and circling his other arm in front of him.

Quick 20 metre restart

A team can take advantage of a quick 20m restart if the player collecting the ball after it has gone or been made dead in the in goal area runs back to the centre of the 20m line while retaining possession of the ball and takes the restart himself. In addition, all players from the team taking the 20m restart must be back inside the 20m area, the referee must be back on the 20m line and the restart must be taken at the centre of the 20m line. A mark will be placed on the centre of the 20m line as an indication to the players.

Advantage

If a team gains possession from a forward pass or knock on then they will only be deemed to have taken their advantage if they keep possession until the next tackle is complete. If possession is lost before the tackle is complete then the referee will go back to the point of the original infringement and award a scrum against the team that infringed first. The referee will rule that the team in possession has not had an advantage if they are tackled close to their own goal line. Foul play by the team 

 

attempting to take the advantage will be penalised at the point where the foul play occurs.

Markers not square when the ball is played

Where there is a quick play the ball and a marker(s) does not have time to get in position, he can be played onside by getting into the position he should have been in at marker. Once he has got to that position he can make a tackle. The referee should penalise players who get into a marker position but choose to leave early before the ball has been played.

Stuart Cummings Match Officials Director December 2012 

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