Welcome to another high quality edition of referees corner and of course one of the great clashes in modern rugby – Leinster v Munster. Welcome to Ben Whitehouse from the Welsh Rugby Union. Ben is of course the son of South Wales policeman Nigel Whitehouse, a well-known referee, who was involved in 19 tests before retiring from international level in 2007. Ben made his Pro 14 Debut in 2014 when he took charge of Connacht v Zebre.
September and October sees the start of the area meetings across Leinster. The province is broken into five areas for refereeing – North East, North Midlands, Midlands, South East and Metropolitan. Each area has an elected representative who manages the referees and new members in his given area. Each month the areas have their own meetings amongst their members. This month saw the focus remain on the key refereeing points for the season. The meetings were facilitated by David O’Brien of the IRFU.
Both the Leinster League and AIL started in the last few weeks. To facilitate this we run touch judging courses for both members of clubs who will touch judge during the Leinster League for their own clubs and for our own members who will be touch judging All Ireland League. Sometimes we wish we could run these courses for spectators who seem to think we can adjudicate on everything as tough judges. Unfortunately there are no Assistant Referees in domestic Irish rugby so all we can look at is Touch, Touch in Goal, Kicks at Goal and foul play. Still we will take the generous instruction and advice from the terraces from another season.
For the Edinburgh game we focused on the first half of the new law trials. Let’s look at the others.
Amended Tackle 15.4 (c)
The tackler must get up before playing the ball and then can only play from their side of the tackle gate.
Law 16: Amended Ruck Law
A ruck commences when at least one player is on their feet and over the ball which is on the ground (tackled player, tackler). At this point the offside line is created. A player on their feet may use their hands to pick up the ball as long as this is immediate. As soon as an opposition player arrives no hands can be used.
Law 16.4 : Other Ruck Offences
A player must not kick the ball out of a ruck.
Sanction: Penalty kick
The player can only hook it in a backwards motion.
Law 18 Definition Mark
To make a mark a player must have one or both feet on or behind that player’s 22-metre line and catch a ball that has reached the plane of the 22-metre line.
Law 19 Touch Definition
If the ball has passed the plane of touch when it is caught, then the catcher is not deemed to have taken the ball into touch.
If the ball has not passed the plane of touch when it is caught or picked up, then the catcher is deemed to have taken the ball into touch, regardless of whether the ball was in motion or stationary.
If a player jumps and knocks the ball back into the playing area (or if that player catches the ball and throws it back into the playing area) before landing in touch or touch-in-goal, play continues regardless of whether the ball reaches the plane of touch.
Law 19.1(c) No Gain in Ground
If a player, with one or both feet on or behind the 22-metre line, picks up the ball, which was outside the 22, or catches the ball in front of the 22-metre line and kicks it directly into touch from within the 22, then that player has taken the ball back inside the 22, so there is no gain in ground.
Delete 19.1(e) and re-letter subsequent paragraphs accordingly.
Law 22.9 (b) Defending Player in In-goal
If a player with one or both feet on or behind the goal line picks up the ball from within the field of play, or catches the ball in front of the goal line, that player has taken possession of the ball in the field of play.
Delete 22.9(c) and re-letter subsequent paragraphs accordingly.
Law 22.9 (d) Defending Player in In-goal
If a player with one or both feet on or behind the dead ball line picks up or catches a ball that has not reached the dead ball line, or touch-in-goal line, that player is deemed to have made the ball dead.
There is a very useful video on our website – https://leinsterrugbyreferees.ie/?p=3607 where Alain Rolland explains these new trials.
Feel free to make contact with the Leinster Rugby Referees at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact by phone Denis Collins at 01-2235107 or David O’Brien at email@example.com. If you are interested in becoming a referee get in contact with us through our Facebook and Google + pages, our website www.arlb.ie or through twitter @leinsterreferee.