non contested "maul"

Jarrod Burton


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I really hope someone (ideally The Powers That Be) clarifies this.

Got collared on arrival yesterday by one of the coaches who wanted to clarify how I’d ref uncontested mauls at the lineout. He was under the impression that if the defense didn’t engage and just stood there then the other team couldn’t run into them, so allowing the defenders to create an impassable wall/fall victims of flying wedge just by standing still.

He was shocked that I didn’t agree with him as, as far as I was concerned, if the ball stayed at the front they could march down the the length of the pitch. If defense engage (or got grabbed, or just got plowed into by the advancing team) it was a maul, if his team moved more than a meter it was leaving the lineout and a PK, but they could tackle if they wanted. However, if the ball got moved back it was “use it” time. (I’m fortunate in that USAR have a specific callout of this shenanigan.)

Good news was that the look of absolute confusion from said coach was ended by him mumbling “ok, we won’t bother with that then..”

Job done :) - this time.
My emphasis - I'm not ok with a team grabbing a defender and dragging them in to form a maul, its illegal to tackle a player without the ball and dragging a player in to force them to play the way the BC team wants is unsporting.
 

Stu10


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I really hope someone (ideally The Powers That Be) clarifies this.

Got collared on arrival yesterday by one of the coaches who wanted to clarify how I’d ref uncontested mauls at the lineout. He was under the impression that if the defense didn’t engage and just stood there then the other team couldn’t run into them, so allowing the defenders to create an impassable wall/fall victims of flying wedge just by standing still.

He was shocked that I didn’t agree with him as, as far as I was concerned, if the ball stayed at the front they could march down the the length of the pitch. If defense engage (or got grabbed, or just got plowed into by the advancing team) it was a maul, if his team moved more than a meter it was leaving the lineout and a PK, but they could tackle if they wanted. However, if the ball got moved back it was “use it” time. (I’m fortunate in that USAR have a specific callout of this shenanigan.)

Good news was that the look of absolute confusion from said coach was ended by him mumbling “ok, we won’t bother with that then..”

Job done :) - this time.
Since you are based in the US, "The Powers That Be" have clarified this... @Locke has posted guidance from USARR. I don't agree with it personally, however, it is a specific guidance that you can refer to when asked by a coach or player in USA.
 

Locke


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Since you are based in the US, "The Powers That Be" have clarified this... @Locke has posted guidance from USARR. I don't agree with it personally, however, it is a specific guidance that you can refer to when asked by a coach or player in USA.
It seems to be the consensus here that allowing the wedge to travel is dangerous and poor play. I can agree. I find refusing to engage the maul and leaving the play in this weird stand-off scenario to also not be positive play (although admittedly with less risk of injury).

So, what’s the best solution? If you could rewrite the laws or GMGs around this, what would you like to see happen? The simplest and safest that I see is that, if opposition doesn’t engage the maul, the team in possession must not travel forward and immediately play the ball away. The downside to this in my mind is that any team that has a weaker maul can just refuse to allow an organized maul to form all game. This doesn’t feel like rewarding positive play. What are your thoughts?
 

didds

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....

He was shocked that I didn’t agree with him as, as far as I was concerned, if the ball stayed at the front they could march down the the length of the pitch. I...
which isnt what some here would have answered presumably ? ie thois soituation represents a FW in concept with or without walking upfield?

(FTR I reckon that is fair game if not we get the uneditifying mexican stand off debated aboveat the very least, OR an immediate PK just for doing nothing defensively.
 

Volun-selected


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Completely agree with all the points above which is why I’d prefer a deeper view of this from the very top. I am luckier than some in that USAR have called this out so I can point to that, but I’d prefer it to be resolved as several players bound together barreling into a line of opponents isn’t healthy.

One option (just an idea building off @Locke ) could be that any lineout defender who chooses to not engage is deemed out the game and must withdraw to the offside line giving the attacking team a 10m gap until the ball leaves the lineout or is carried over the mark of touch. If no maul the team in possession cannot advance. If the BC advances in anticipation they have to return to the mark without delay to play the ball.

Either the ball comes in and a maul forms (assuming the catcher doesn’t just bat it back) or the defenders withdraw, we call “use it” and the BC has 5 seconds to make the most of the 10m space. That would penalize the team choosing not to engage but keep the game moving.
 

didds

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The downside to this in my mind is that any team that has a weaker maul can just refuse to allow an organized maul to form all game. This doesn’t feel like rewarding positive play. What are your thoughts?
As above etc - these interpretations merely reduce the tactical options available. Until we reach the stage (in extremis) whereby all lineout ball must be played away immediately, so we just ditch the idea of lineouts and restart play with a tap on the 5m interaction with the LoT.

cant think where I may have seen that before... ;-)
 

Stu10


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"But last week...." will be the next thing out of his mouth. Guaranteed.
Ha, you can apply this phrase to a million different aspects of the game!!!!!!!!!!! ?

It seems to be the consensus here that allowing the wedge to travel is dangerous and poor play. I can agree. I find refusing to engage the maul and leaving the play in this weird stand-off scenario to also not be positive play (although admittedly with less risk of injury).

So, what’s the best solution? If you could rewrite the laws or GMGs around this, what would you like to see happen? The simplest and safest that I see is that, if opposition doesn’t engage the maul, the team in possession must not travel forward and immediately play the ball away. The downside to this in my mind is that any team that has a weaker maul can just refuse to allow an organized maul to form all game. This doesn’t feel like rewarding positive play. What are your thoughts?
I'm inclined to disagree with this... nothing is stopping the BC plus one pre-latched player from advancing up the field, therefore either (1) a maul can still be initiated by carrying to engage an opposition player, or (2) if the defenders leave a gap in the lineout then the BC can simply run through and up the pitch.

The latest GLT call out the flying wedge as illegal and also endorse the single pre-latch... the problem and the solution are presented on the same page!

If I could re-write, I would make forming the wedge illegal, but first (and immediately) "use it" before going straight to the whistle for a stationary wedge. If it moves forward, immediate penalty.
 
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