Maul - BC Knees Go to Ground

Stu10


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the bold bit - isn't that what first happened in the OP

Are you referring to the OP by Gracie or the new post by number11?

I consider there to be a difference between the ball carrier going to ground and getting the ball to the ground. IMHO if the BC gets his body on the ground but the ball is not on the ground (e.g. BC gets a knee only to ground, or BC on his back with ball on his chest), then it is not a ruck; however, the BC is on the ground and is therefore obliged to release/play the ball.

In Gracie's post the BC went to ground, did not release, then got up again with the ball... penalty for not releasing on the ground.

In number11's post, either the maul has collapsed and is unplayable, since there is no mention of the ball being on the ground to create a ruck (law 17.17a and/or 17b, scrum) or green has intentionally gone off feet and killed the ball (law 17.9, penalty), depending on what actually happened. However, I'm not sure the correct decision if green had stayed on his feet, played the ball, and red (who is on the ground) did not release... penalty or scrum?

I suggest to only call a ruck if the ball is playable because I want to avoid a scenario where the team taking the ball into the maul expects to retain possession because they got the ball to ground and were going forward, but they have created an unplayable ruck (Law 19.1).

Edit - I was being lazy before, and I've now read through the earlier pages... Law Clarification 2/2011 tells us that if the ball carrier goes to ground and that player fails to make the ball available (ie does not release) the sanction is a penalty kick to the opposition.
 
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crossref


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Even more ... I'd just go for the turnover scrum
 
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Dickie E


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I reckon all the players, both teams, would normally expect a turnover.
noting, of course:

If a maul is formed immediately after a player has directly caught an opponent’s kick in open play, a scrum that is awarded for any of the above reasons will be to the team of the ball catcher.
 

Dickie E


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One of those decisions in a game where you doubt yourself!

Blue BC is wrapped up by red defender, other players quickly join in and 'maul' is called. Blue manages to get their knees to ground to immediate cries from his side that the red player must release him. Red player quickly releases the BC (I had said nothing), he gets to his feet still carrying the ball and runs towards the posts. I ping him for not releasing the ball in the tackle.

It turned out this, trying to get to ground and gain a PK was a clear tactic by Blue to overcome tunrovers. It was cute but the execution was not as clever!

My reading of this situation is that in a maul if the BC can get their knees to ground they have been tackled and the defender becomes the tackler and must release the player straight away; at the same time the tackled player must release the ball and make it immediately available; the defender can re-engage to get the ball (from their goal post side) - nice in theory but tough in atight maul situation. If the ball is not immediatley available turnover and scrum to defending side.

My sympathy was with the defenders. In a tight maul it can be hard to know that the player you were holding up to gain a turnover has managed to get a knee to ground.

In the game, I used Blue team's failure to make the ball immediately available a reason to award turnovers consistently.


But was I right?
Here are my thoughts (apologies if I've doubled up with others).

IMO the bit in bold is fundamentally wrong. Once a maul occurs and is called by the referee, then no tackle can happen so forget tackle law requirements.

The ball carrier who has got a knee on the ground must attempt to make the ball available (ie he can't stand back up again with the ball). If it was a knee that grazed the ground I'd likely ignore it.

Provided the opponent/s had him wrapped up prior to the knee, they do not need to release him and we have the classic case of the turnover scrum.

If the opponent maintained his feet (I can picture it conceptually but have never seen it IRL) then I would allow the opponent to immediately attempt to wrest the ball, but if not immediately successful, I'd give a turnover scrum.

In a nutshell, once we have a maul, nobody needs to let go of the ball.
 

Lee Lifeson-Peart


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noting, of course:

If a maul is formed immediately after a player has directly caught an opponent’s kick in open play, a scrum that is awarded for any of the above reasons will be to the team of the ball catcher.

I recall in last year's 6N that Garbisi, the Italian #10, managed to convince Luke Pearce that Italy should have the put in to the scrum after he (Garbisi) fielded his own chip before being caught and held up by the Scottish(?) players.

"Bullshit baffles brains" as my late father was known to say.
 

Dickie E


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noting, of course:

If a maul is formed immediately after a player has directly caught an opponent’s kick in open play, a scrum that is awarded for any of the above reasons will be to the team of the ball catcher.
Question: is a penalty kick an example of a "kick in open play"?
 

Stu10


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I recall in last year's 6N that Garbisi, the Italian #10, managed to convince Luke Pearce that Italy should have the put in to the scrum after he (Garbisi) fielded his own chip before being caught and held up by the Scottish(?) players.

"Bullshit baffles brains" as my late father was known to say.

I noted this at the time... the commentators said (I think it was Dallaglio) "the laws say after catching a kick, they don't say it has to be kicked by the other team", which is clearly wrong.
 

Lee Lifeson-Peart


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I noted this at the time... the commentators said (I think it was Dallaglio) "the laws say after catching a kick, they don't say it has to be kicked by the other team", which is clearly wrong.

Surely with a To3 and a TMO you'd think one of them would use TV speak for "Luke! WTF are you doing?!"
 

Locke


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There’s been several instances here of discussion of the maul becoming a “ruck”. It may just be convenience in terminology, as with the use of the word “tackle” also in this thread, but a maul cannot become a tackle or a ruck.

My reading of the laws: (Very happy to be corrected if laws show I am wrong.)

In a maul, if (otherwise legally) the ball is on the ground or the ball carrier is no longer on their feet, the maul is over and the ball must be immediately available for play. No one has to release the ball carrier. The ball carrier must release or play the ball immediately, if still in possession of the ball. Anyone on their feet and not coming from an offside position can attempt to play the ball. Offside lines have disappeared; It’s open play.
 

Stu10


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Law Clarification 2/2011 mentions several times that a maul can become a ruck.

when the ball goes to ground at a collapsed maul and there are players from both sides on their feet bound over the ball so that Law 16 – Ruck becomes applicable.
 

Locke


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Law Clarification 2/2011 mentions several times that a maul can become a ruck.
I stand corrected. Thank you, I wasn’t aware of this.

So if players from each team are on their feet over the ball, it can become a ruck. It still seems that “tackle” cannot apply? So, if not a ruck, then open play?
 

DocP


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So if players from each team are on their feet over the ball, it can become a ruck. It still seems that “tackle” cannot apply? So, if not a ruck, then open play?
That is what I originally thought but it clearly says the maul becomes a ruck, then if it is a ruck, no hands allowed apart from the "9" so basically the BC team play the ball away with no real contest other than a counter ruck.
 

Volun-selected


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So knee(s) on the ground - still a maul.
BC gets the ball to the ground - ruck and BC needs to make the ball available. If they cannot - scrum. If they can but fail to - PK.

Can the BC drop and place the ball in any direction? So maul held up just just shy of the line, can the BC drop down and make the ball “available“ by placing through the legs onto the line?
 

didds

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Good question. I cant see why not - try awarded
 

Decorily

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Can the BC drop and place the ball in any direction? So maul held up just just shy of the line, can the BC drop down and make the ball “available“ by placing through the legs onto the line?
Well it's not really "placing" the ball. ...more reaching to score which is allowed.
 

Dickie E


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That is what I originally thought but it clearly says the maul becomes a ruck, then if it is a ruck, no hands allowed apart from the "9" so basically the BC team play the ball away with no real contest other than a counter ruck.
there's more too. If the phase of play changes from 'maul' to 'ruck', then the restart for the unsuccessful end to a ruck is different to the restart for the unsuccessful end to a maul. So, in theory, if the ball carrier gets the ball to ground, his/her team will get the scrum feed o_O
 

Stu10


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there's more too. If the phase of play changes from 'maul' to 'ruck', then the restart for the unsuccessful end to a ruck is different to the restart for the unsuccessful end to a maul. So, in theory, if the ball carrier gets the ball to ground, his/her team will get the scrum feed o_O
Not necessarily, possession is given to "the team last moving forward. If neither team was moving forward, the attacking team." Therefore the defending team could get the scrum feed if they were moving forward.

However, as I said previously, I would quickly blow and declare unsuccessful maul rather than award possession to the attacking team if they would otherwise have formed a ruck that is instantly dead.
 

tim White


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OK, it can't be just me- or is it? Have you noticed how many Mauls at this world cup (clearly formed with more than one player from each team plus the ball carrier) have been called 'Tackle' once the ball carrier goes to ground?
 
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