Coach cross at half time

Taffy


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This from today's college match. Half time, just awarded a yellow card to black for a team offence. I happen to be counting the penalties and make it 8 to black and 4 to white. 2 of the blacks had been throwing the ball away and therefore ten yards and three for offsides at the ruck repeatedly leading to the yellow.

Coach arrives as I go to my water. "Tim,whats happening with the penalties, you have given 19 against us ( not a maths teacher then). I'm a bit caught but say "through the captain please Bob". He says "I'm the coach". I know this and say, yes, but through the captain please. Oh OK, I can show you what they were for". He's not happy and I realise I probably should have left it "with the captain". I called the captain over and he is stuck in the middle of the team talk by the coach who says "I'm talking at the moment". I wait until he has finished, have a word with the captain and explain. He doesn't want the coach present.

Any better way of handling it?
 

crossref


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At half time, I don't think that question is unreasonable for a coach to ask, and I would have simply answered him (starting with 19, Bob??? I made it 8! --)

Quite often a coach will give his team a moment to themselves and quickly ask me 'is there anything I should talk to my players about?' I don't think that's unreasonable question, indeed I think it's helpful and I would normally just give him a simple straight answer. "yes - I've already spoken to skipper, but you could reinforce that ... whatever it is"

It's a coach yelling from the touchline that I consider unacceptable.

For talking to the captain at half time: it's either immediately after I blow the whistle, before they huddle, or just before I start the second half. that's obviously less satisfactory as you may then have to give him a moment for a second huddle to pass on a message to his team.

I wouldn't normally approach a huddle and try and attract his attention - it's a bit undignified.
 
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ChrisR

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This from a coaches perspective:

"What's happening with the penalties?" means one of two things. Either he thinks the balance of penalties is unfair and he's angling to influence you or he's really not sure (are your signals clear?) and wants to know why. I may be unsure of one or two but repeated offsides at the ruck aren't hard to decipher.

So the fact that his count is way skewed kind of suggests he's angling. Nevertheless, treat it as the latter. Give him the general info so he can include it in his halftime talk.

Question: Did you warn the skipper before you YCd for repeated offsides?
 

Taffy


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This from a coaches perspective:

"What's happening with the penalties?" means one of two things. Either he thinks the balance of penalties is unfair and he's angling to influence you or he's really not sure (are your signals clear?) and wants to know why. I may be unsure of one or two but repeated offsides at the ruck aren't hard to decipher.

So the fact that his count is way skewed kind of suggests he's angling. Nevertheless, treat it as the latter. Give him the general info so he can include it in his halftime talk.

Question: Did you warn the skipper before you YCd for repeated offsides?

Yes, as, there was one offence in the 22 for holding on (penalty), then 2 in two minutes for offside at the rucks. Gave a clear team warning to the captain and told him "it reduced my options for the next one". Within 2 minutes, as clear as offside as you can see, so a yellow.

Yes, with hindsight I probably should have said "I make it 8 Bob, but the captain has been informed" it just caught me a bit on the hop!

Never a dull moment is there?
 

SimonSmith


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I assume that this is the match with the question about the scrum?

Like Crossref suggests, there were probably better ways of handling it. I'm a little surprised at your need to channel a Coach's query through the captain. It seems counterproductive on at least two levels. One, you run the risk of looking deliberately uncooperative, which is unhelpful. Secondly, why on earth wouldn't you talk to him and explain so that your message gets through to the players? Strong chance they'll listen to him...

And if you want the captain, don't drag him away when he's talking. That's his time with his team. As others have mentioned, if it's important get him as the whistle goes.

Each of this is a form of transaction. Ask yourself what yu want to get out of the transactions, and how best to achieve that. Odds are you choose a different path.
 

Taffy


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I assume that this is the match with the question about the scrum?

Like Crossref suggests, there were probably better ways of handling it. I'm a little surprised at your need to channel a Coach's query through the captain. It seems counterproductive on at least two levels. One, you run the risk of looking deliberately uncooperative, which is unhelpful. Secondly, why on earth wouldn't you talk to him and explain so that your message gets through to the players? Strong chance they'll listen to him...

And if you want the captain, don't drag him away when he's talking. That's his time with his team. As others have mentioned, if it's important get him as the whistle goes.

Each of this is a form of transaction. Ask yourself what yu want to get out of the transactions, and how best to achieve that. Odds are you choose a different path.

yep, realise now that I probably could have handled the coach differently. He was though aggressive from the outset and this coloured my decision. If he had been a bit more approachable to me I probably would have handled it differently. I was wary of getting into a conversation that I wasn't sure where it was going. Again a learning process. And grateful for comments.
 

crossref


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He was though aggressive from the outset and this coloured my decision. .

yeah, that's a whole different question!

Q1 - should you be willing to discuss PK reasons and themes with a coach at half time - yes, why not?

Q2 - when dealing with an aggressive coach, how can I make best use of the opportnity I have to talk to him at half time?


Q2 is a great question.

If a coach is behaving aggressively should that make you more or less interested in having a half time conversation? is it an opportunity to confront and lay down the law, or an opportunity to explain and bring him round. Or should you ignore him lest you pour pettrol on the fire .
These are good things to discuss.
 
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FlipFlop


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You can always deflect the aggressive coach with a comment along the lines that you will talk to him if he is rational, and not so aggressive. And perhaps suggest he speaks to his Captain first, as his Captain is aware of why they were being PK'ed. And if he and his captain need further clarification, then you are happy to provide that.

Be pleasant, be calm, and divert the missile at someone else.....

If he won't go away, and/or remains to be aggressive, then the next comment needs to be along the lines of: I'm happy to speak to you, provided it is done in a calm manner, without aggression.
If he carries on - ask him to stop speaking to you, and leave, and if possible move away from him.
If he refuses and follows you - insist you are left alone.
If he still refuses - comment that it is getting into the realms of match official abuse, and you are happy to red card him if he continues
If he still refuses to leave - red card him, and report him.

So you open a door to communication, and then if he doesn't want to step through it, you escalate as he continues. Clear, obvious steps.

On the occasion a coach continues to be aggressive, after I have got rid of them, I approach the captain. Normally the Captain is very happy, will understand, and will either say he will deal with the coach, or if there are some issues, will ask about them in a non-aggressive way.
 

SimonSmith


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I'd second most of what FF says.

A different way to look at it is that aggressive doesn't have to be avoided - sometimes a judicious word can deflate the aggression bubble. I think deflecting to the captain can serve sometimes as exacerbating factor. If he's asking questions, genuinely seeking answers, you're better off trying to handle him; if his language is more statement than question, then I think you consider your options.

What you DO have to do is control the dynamic. "OK Coach, I'm going to tell you what I've seen and what I've told your captain, OK? Then I'm going to go get some water. Well, the first PK...." Open hands, no crossed arms. If you really need the time to think, get your water and drink whilst you ruminate.

To answer Crossref's #2, I always (on the rare occasion it happens) try to speak to the angry coach at half time. If nothing else, it gives me a better chance of having a calmer coach for the second half, and the players not descending to his level.
 

Phil E


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RFU Regulations

[LAWS]12.5 Approaches to Match Officials
No person shall approach the Match Officials at any time during the
half-time interval to discuss any issue arising from the first half of the
match nor shall enter the referee’s changing room during the half time
interval unless invited to do so by the referee. [/LAWS]
 

crossref


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true Phil - but isn't that a fall back to protect you when you don't want to talk?
in practice if a coach politely approaches you don't you normally speak to him?
 

RobLev

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true Phil - but isn't that a fall back to protect you when you don't want to talk?
in practice if a coach politely approaches you don't you normally speak to him?

What do you say to Blue's coach if he wonders why you PK'd Gold 19 times in the first half but, after being spoken to at half-time by Gold's coach, only PK'd them 3 times in the 2nd half?

Isn't the RFU regulation there to protect you both (i) from being influenced by one or other coach (or other person) and (ii) from appearing to be influenced by one or other coach (or other person)?
 

crossref


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I don't think it's any different from talking to the captain, and we do that all the time.
 

Browner

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What do you say to Blue's coach if he wonders why you PK'd Gold 19 times in the first half but, after being spoken to at half-time by Gold's coach, only PK'd them 3 times in the 2nd half?

Isn't the RFU regulation there to protect you both (i) from being influenced by one or other coach (or other person) and (ii) from appearing to be influenced by one or other coach (or other person)?

I was a Coach at a U14 game (CB champions v neighbouring CB champions , merely to explain context) where the opposition coach immediately headed to the referee at half time clearly wanting to have his say etc....

The referee (L6- I think?) asked the coach to wait whilst he summoned me onto the pitch to include me in the conversation.

He called me over and said something along the lines of "Blacks coach wishes to speak to me mid match, so before he does, you need to hear the conversation for transparency reasons"

Then ....
Ref : does the subject concern any player safety matter?
black coach : no not really
Ref: then i think that concludes our discussions.
Black coach : i want to talk about some of the 'unsafe' decisions you've made
Ref: if its not related to player safety then i dont debate decisions with coach's mid match. So unless you've anything else then thank you gentlemen.

I chuckled inwardly as the black coach turned and sheepishly wondered off muttering under his breath, BC then asked me " is that guy for real?" my only response was, "he sounds competent to me"

I've since tried it, and it works a treat ..... One eyed coaches suddenly become all coy when speaking in front of their opponent coach !
 

crossref


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in certain circs I think that's great.

but refs don't feel the need to have both captains present when speaking to one of them. (of course sometimes you do)

I think refs can be too precious. If a coach approaches you, politely, and says : 'can I just ask, the PK in the 22 at 30m, around the ruck - I missed what it was for?' I wouldn't say 'hang on I'll fetch the other coach' I'd just tell him the answer.
 
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Dixie


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yeah, that's a whole different question!

Q1 - should you be willing to discuss PK reasons and themes with a coach at half time - yes, why not?

Q2 - when dealing with an aggressive coach, how can I make best use of the opportnity I have to talk to him at half time?


Q2 is a great question.

If a coach is behaving aggressively should that make you more or less interested in having a half time conversation? is it an opportunity to confront and lay down the law, or an opportunity to explain and bring him round. Or should you ignore him lest you pour pettrol on the fire .
These are good things to discuss.
Crossref is perhaps more sanguine about coach discussions than I am - or perhaps he just gets a better class of coach in London. A coach who asks a constructive question ("is there anything I need to draw to my team's attention ref?) is going to get a constructive answer, but when a guy starts off with "what the f&*k is going on with all penalties, ref?" then he's not going to be satisfied with any answer other than the one he's never going to get: "I got them al wrong, and I'm so sorry. I know it looks like I'm being biased against you, but I promise I'll even it up in the next half".

Given that no answer will satisfy, any engagement with the coach at this point is going to be unsatisfactory. At best you'll get into a debate about each decision, trying to justify decisions that have been and gone, when you need to be focusing on what you'll do next half. I believe that at higher levels it is considered inappropriate for a coach to speak to the ref at half time, and I see that as good practice. They are trying to influence you, and neither you nor the game are well served by changing your approach half way through the match.

So I think Taffy's approach of trying to close down the coach was justifiable. Given time, he'll learn more effective ways of doing that - as with so much of the game, it is man management. And as with so much man management, the realisation of the best way to handle it usually reveals itself several moments after the last opportunity to use it has just passed.
 

didds

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If its during the match i'd suggest the answer is "ask your captain, because I explained to him already". 'Cos you would have said presumably as you award the PK something along of the lines of "red 7, in at the side, PK".

Half time MAYBE a very quick word.

didds
 

crossref


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If its during the match i'd suggest the answer is "ask your captain, because I explained to him already". 'Cos you would have said presumably as you award the PK something along of the lines of "red 7, in at the side, PK".

Half time MAYBE a very quick word.

didds

yes, this whole thread is about half time..
 

RobLev

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I don't think it's any different from talking to the captain, and we do that all the time.

Generally in the hearing of the other captain, and in the course of play. And its not the talking to them, but the listening to them; and captains who use their privilege of talking to you to argue over your decisions don't do it twice?
 
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