ADVANTAGE WHEN TIME IS UP

Jz558


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I just wanted to canvas opinion on the advantage Wayne Barnes played at the end of the first half in the Wales v Australia match. The video is attached but, to summarise, time was up when Wales gained a penalty advantage from a scrum on the half way line. Play continues and they run the ball, ending up being held up over the line. Anscombe asks Barnes if they can go back for the penalty to which he laugh and says “you’ve advanced 55 metres”.

WB's decision can clearly be justified in law but it started me thinking if referees should consider what stage the game is at when deciding when advantage is over. In this particular case Wales clearly had the time to play the ball as they wished and so tactical advantage could be said to have been gained, however we frequently see that, for decisions closer to the posts which, when teams fail to score, are blown up and brought back for the penalty. In this case WB considered that a 55m gain in territory was sufficient and yet, as time was up, Wales had no opportunity to benefit from that gain in territory and the only way they could have benefitted from the advantage being played was to score. Whether they had advanced 5m or 55m no territorial gain was possible unless another penalty had been conceded.

I was left thinking that if the same scenario had occurred in the 20th minute, then no problem as Wales had advanced a significant distance up the field and had gained a territorial advantage but not so after time has elapsed. I also suspect that in the same scenario but 25m out from the posts, and time is up, he would have gone back for the penalty.

So, apologies for the longish post but I wanted to be clear that WB was perfectly entitled to make the call but it left a niggle in my mind and I wondered if anyone else would have considered going back for the penalty or was a territorial gain really sufficient advantage?

Secondary question also, given law 7.3c (which to be fair I didn’t recall until afterwards) says “Advantage must not be applied when a scrum is wheeled through 90 degrees,” should advantage have been played at all?
 

Decorily

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Can't see video.
Did WB call advantage over or try to communicate with captain, 9 or anyone else prior to ending advantage?
 

Jz558


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Nothing clear on the video but am assuming not as Anscombe asked to go back
 

Balones

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Nothing audible on the tv from WB re ‘over’.
It did get me thinking. In my serious playing days that amount of territorial gain would easily be considered an advantage but nowadays even much lower level teams have a kicker that can slot the ball over the posts from the halfway line without wind assistance. What a referee has to do is weigh up whether the opportunity to score a try was equal to the opportunity to kick a penalty goal. Difficult. Anscombe did miss his first kick from a slightly easier position. It was only really in the second half that he took command of the game with his kicking.
 

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I also suspect that in the same scenario but 25m out from the posts, and time is up, he would have gone back for the penalty.

Cannot see the vid, but it sounds fair. If the penalty had been awarded inside the 22 near then you could argue that they didn’t get a clear advantage and back we go, unlike making 55m which is a clear gain in territory. (All subjective since would 45m, or 35m be clear enough..?)

I would assume that they weighed up whether to kick for touch and then drive, maybe getting another penalty, but they ran the ball and it didn’t work out.
 

BikingBud


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I just wanted to canvas opinion on the advantage Wayne Barnes played at the end of the first half in the Wales v Australia match. The video is attached but, to summarise, time was up when Wales gained a penalty advantage from a scrum on the half way line. Play continues and they run the ball, ending up being held up over the line. Anscombe asks Barnes if they can go back for the penalty to which he laugh and says “you’ve advanced 55 metres”.

WB's decision can clearly be justified in law but it started me thinking if referees should consider what stage the game is at when deciding when advantage is over. In this particular case Wales clearly had the time to play the ball as they wished and so tactical advantage could be said to have been gained, however we frequently see that, for decisions closer to the posts which, when teams fail to score, are blown up and brought back for the penalty. In this case WB considered that a 55m gain in territory was sufficient and yet, as time was up, Wales had no opportunity to benefit from that gain in territory and the only way they could have benefitted from the advantage being played was to score. Whether they had advanced 5m or 55m no territorial gain was possible unless another penalty had been conceded.

I was left thinking that if the same scenario had occurred in the 20th minute, then no problem as Wales had advanced a significant distance up the field and had gained a territorial advantage but not so after time has elapsed. I also suspect that in the same scenario but 25m out from the posts, and time is up, he would have gone back for the penalty.

So, apologies for the longish post but I wanted to be clear that WB was perfectly entitled to make the call but it left a niggle in my mind and I wondered if anyone else would have considered going back for the penalty or was a territorial gain really sufficient advantage?

Secondary question also, given law 7.3c (which to be fair I didn’t recall until afterwards) says “Advantage must not be applied when a scrum is wheeled through 90 degrees,” should advantage have been played at all?
Advantage:

a. May be tactical. The non-offending team is free to play the ball as they wish.
b. May be territorial. Play has moved towards the offending team’s dead-ball line.
c. May be a combination of tactical and territorial.
d. Must be clear and real. A mere opportunity to gain an advantage is not sufficient.

Therefore I would offer:
  • Scrum starts around 40:00 so next stoppage will be half time.
  • Wales dominate scrum and get good ball going forward, Barnes calls advantage. (See a)
  • Wales have 5v2 and good ball going forward. (See a)
  • Wales have 4v2 still going forward. (See a)
  • Wales have 3v1, and more than 15m to work with. (See a)
  • Aus defence is scrambling to cover.
  • @10m line Wales still have 2v0 within 15m channel. North and LRZ! (See a, b and d)
  • North takes steps and before 22m cuts inside one covering defender before passing to LRZ just inside 22m. :rolleyes:
  • Critically, North has not stopped the defenders from drifting out. :rolleyes:
  • LRZ gets ball and 3 defenders:rolleyes:
  • Aus full back is corner flagging and tackles LRZ low, by the legs.
  • Other Aus defenders get underneath and prevent grounding. (See a, b, c and d)
  • Barnes proclaims "Held Up" and awards GLD, hence half time.
  • They had clear and real opportunity to gain, in fact they gained around 50 m but perhaps their ball handling and decision making was not good enough. (See a, b, c and d)
  • If it wasn't half time then the GLD would have been taken so all quite normal.
  • If a new penalty had occurred then a new advantage would have been in place, eg ruck offside or collapsing over the ball on the floor and Wales could then have tried to exploit the new advantage.
 

BikingBud


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Nothing clear on the video but am assuming not as Anscombe asked to go back
Wouldn't you always try to go back if you've just butchered a great opportunity?
 

BikingBud


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Can't see video.
Did WB call advantage over or try to communicate with captain, 9 or anyone else prior to ending advantage?
Isn't that just a courtesy?

  1. Advantage ends when:
    1. The referee deems that the non-offending team has gained an advantage. The referee allows play to continue; or
    2. The referee deems that the non-offending team is unlikely to gain an advantage. The referee stops the game and applies the sanction for the infringement from which advantage was being played; or
    3. The non-offending team commits an infringement before they have gained an advantage. The referee stops the game and applies the sanction for the first infringement. If either or both infringements are for foul play, the referee applies the appropriate sanction(s) for the offence(s); or
    4. The offending team commits a second or subsequent infringement from which no advantage can be gained. The referee stops play and allows the captain of the non-offending team to choose the most advantageous sanction
He allowed play to continue, did not intervene and therefore his next decision, "Held Up" stands.
 

crossref


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intersting WB called advantage over from a PK twice in that game. I can't remember the last time I have ever seen it happen

at the time I recall that I thought both were fair, but haven't been back to watch it again
 

Ciaran Trainor


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I didn't hear a call of advantage over which, whether it is a courtesy or not, it is what all players and spectators expect.
It should be written into law if we can't find a reference.
It's been said many times, advantage over is different to all teams at all levels.
I remember a game where the home team were getting hammered in the scrums and the skipper said to me if there's a knock on we don't want a scrum please play advantage to see if we can get possession.
Duly did and they scored a try from a ball that was hacked 50m down the pitch, the got possession and ran it back.
 

Jz558


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Thank you, many valid points. I guess when I'm (over) thinking this I come back to the likelihood that if they'd butchered a try after one phase of play from a penalty advantage being given in the 22 (or "free play" as commentators repeatedly call it), the advantage would, almost certainly, have been ruled not gained, even though they'd had the time and opportunity to play the ball as the wished (tactical advantage). WB gave as his reason for not going back for the penalty that they'd advanced 55m even though that was useless to them in the context of the game as the held up decision triggered half time.

Maybe WB just didnt fancy jogging back to the half-way line so close to half time. I often feel like that in games.
 

Stu10


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I didn't hear a call of advantage over which, whether it is a courtesy or not, it is what all players and spectators expect.
It should be written into law if we can't find a reference.
It's been said many times, advantage over is different to all teams at all levels.
I remember a game where the home team were getting hammered in the scrums and the skipper said to me if there's a knock on we don't want a scrum please play advantage to see if we can get possession.
Duly did and they scored a try from a ball that was hacked 50m down the pitch, the got possession and ran it back.
I like the positive ref/captain relationship here, great story/example.
 

Stu10


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How much advantage to give is always somewhat subjective, though we have guidance. There will always be times when teams will feel hard done... for example a knock-on advantage, ball recovered, clean and successful ruck, call advantage over, then the FH drops the pass from SH; or you call advantage over when a clearance kick is made, but the opposition full back runs it back for a 40m try.

Personally, I try to consider what possible outcome might have resulted from the penalty, and what has the team achieved. A penalty on the halfway line offered a scoring opportunity by kicking for goal, however, Wales crossed the goal line, so they got a real scoring opportunity. They could have kicked for the corner and got possession 5m out... again, they had possession at the goal line... admittedly they may have preferred a lineout and driving maul rather than open play in the red zone, but we need to draw the line somewhere and try to play on if we can.
 

Stu10


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It's called good game management in my opinion.
I don't disagree, but I also think that players should understand the game well enough that it's not s surprise... to be fair, Anscombe asked but he didn't protest.

Similarly, is a maul only a maul is the ref calls it to be a maul? It's good game management and manages expectations, but players should know what a maul is and whether one had formed.
 

crossref


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, but players should know what a maul is and whether one had formed.
That's very different as it's objective
There is no way that players can know that the ref considers adv to be over, unless he tells them
 

BikingBud


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I didn't hear a call of advantage over which, whether it is a courtesy or not, it is what all players and spectators expect.
It should be written into law if we can't find a reference.
It's been said many times, advantage over is different to all teams at all levels.
I remember a game where the home team were getting hammered in the scrums and the skipper said to me if there's a knock on we don't want a scrum please play advantage to see if we can get possession.
Duly did and they scored a try from a ball that was hacked 50m down the pitch, the got possession and ran it back.
If i'm reading this correct, Blue knock on and then hack forward 50m. Red gather ball and counter to score, great advantage and scope for allowing the game to develop.

You have until red pass the position of KO and make positive ground to make the decision, in broken field with red have good counter attacking back three a great demonstration of the beauty of playing advantage and finding reasons not to blow.

Did you call advantage?

Did it affect how blue responded? Od did they play to the whistle and your prompt?

Did you call advantage over?
 

BikingBud


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How much advantage to give is always somewhat subjective, though we have guidance. There will always be times when teams will feel hard done... for example a knock-on advantage, ball recovered, clean and successful ruck, call advantage over, then the FH drops the pass from SH; or you call advantage over when a clearance kick is made, but the opposition full back runs it back for a 40m try.

Personally, I try to consider what possible outcome might have resulted from the penalty, and what has the team achieved. A penalty on the halfway line offered a scoring opportunity by kicking for goal, however, Wales crossed the goal line, so they got a real scoring opportunity. They could have kicked for the corner and got possession 5m out... again, they had possession at the goal line... admittedly they may have preferred a lineout and driving maul rather than open play in the red zone, but we need to draw the line somewhere and try to play on if we can.
Both appear to be:

Advantage:
a. May be tactical. The non-offending team is free to play the ball as they wish.

You have judged that they had a. free to play ball as they wish and the fact that at the next opportunity they execute poorly is not something you can go back to. I consider that Barnes' assessment was similar for Wales, they had a very real scoring opportunity.
 

SimonSmith


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I think, so far as it is possible, both teams are entitled to consistent application of the advantage law, and when it is/isn't over.

To my mind, of we start altering our parameters due to time on the clock, we are wielding an unnecessary influence on the outcome.
 

crossref


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I think, so far as it is possible, both teams are entitled to consistent application of the advantage law, and when it is/isn't over.

To my mind, of we start altering our parameters due to time on the clock, we are wielding an unnecessary influence on the outcome.
Is one of your parameters the location on the field ? They way teams have played so far? The nature of the game? The score ?

Why not also the time on the clock
 
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