Time to touch down

ChrisR

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It does sound like we're splitting hairs. However, this isn't the only law that requires "No delay". See Law 20 Scrum.

No Delay. As soon as the front rows have come together, the scrum half must throw in the
ball without delay.


Even before current scrum engagement management we never required the SH to feed the ball at the instance of engagement. We simply didn't want him dawdling.

I see that same requirement for a kick-off in goal. Yes, pick it up, take a look but don't make it look like you're going to run it out then dot it down. If the ball stops in goal, don't stand there letting the ops run down the pitch then ground it.

So as a referee I'd allow the time to look and make a decision. As a coach I'd expect the first player there to ground it immediately unless: The end of game hooter has sounded or the referee has indicated 'last play' in which case you'd better run it as the scrum center won't be awarded.
 
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Dickie E


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It does sound like we're splitting hairs. However, this isn't the only law that requires "No delay". See Law 20 Scrum.

No Delay. As soon as the front rows have come together, the scrum half must throw in the
ball without delay.


Even before current scrum engagement management we never required the SH to feed the ball at the instance of engagement. We simply didn't want him dawdling.

I see that same requirement for a kick-off in goal. Yes, pick it up, take a look but don't make it look like you're going to run it out then dot it down. If the ball stops in goal, don't stand there letting the ops run down the pitch then ground it.

So as a referee I'd allow the time to look and make a decision. As a coach I'd expect the first player there to ground it immediately unless: The end of game hooter has sounded or the referee has indicated 'last play' in which case you'd better run it as the scrum center won't be awarded.

I agree with all of this except this bit:

If the ball stops in goal, don't stand there letting the ops run down the pitch then ground it.

That is totally unenforcable.
 

OB..


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Yes, pick it up, take a look [...]I
For me that is a delay. By all means take a look before you play the ball, but once you touch it you must ground it without any other actions or forego the options.

Once you have the ball there is no point in taking a look unless you are thinking of doing something other than grounding it, so why should the referee allow it? It only makes his job harder.
 

Blackberry


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In my experience I have always let players have a look, what I don't want to see is any body movement to suggest s/he is trying something which s/he then decides against. Simples.

Why don't players get told this sort of thing???????? Don't you all get fed up when you become the "on-field-educator"?
 

Dickie E


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In my experience I have always let players have a look, what I don't want to see is any body movement to suggest s/he is trying something which s/he then decides against. Simples.

Why don't players get told this sort of thing???????? Don't you all get fed up when you become the "on-field-educator"?

Does it happen that often?
 

Browner

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In my experience I have always let players have a look, what I don't want to see is any body movement to suggest s/he is trying something which s/he then decides against. Simples.

Why don't players get told this sort of thing???????? Don't you all get fed up when you become the "on-field-educator"?

Perhaps the various referee interpretations ???

OB's hard line interpretation of "delay" could easy get you painted as a gotcha ref IMO, week in week out I don't see referees operating to that standard.
Most seem to operate a 'don't take a stride' or 'decide within say 1/2 secs'.

Notwithstanding these observations, in this cliphttps://www.youtube.com/watch?t=28&v=Z5SzVvpIVxoCJ introduces "immediately" [an alternative to delay] into his phraseology , however the player didn't have possession it merely bounced & touched him, so , if the ball strikes you have you delayed??? or does delay only happen if you're in possession?

IMO, being adjudged to be delaying when not in possession/control opens another can of worms entirely
 

OB..


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What is the point of taking a look if you intend to touch down anyway?
 

crossref


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For me that is a delay. By all means take a look before you play the ball, but once you touch it you must ground it without any other actions or forego the options.
.

I'd actually say the opposite -- for me if the defender reaches the ball, picks up the ball, glances up field and touches it down -- then that's 'without delay' and options.

But if the ball comes to rest in the in goal, and the defender stands over it, doing nothing, waiting for the oppo to run up and force him to play it, and eventually when the oppo get close, quickly picks and dots it down, then I'd say that was delay.
 

ChrisR

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Why don't players get told this sort of thing???????? Don't you all get fed up when you become the "on-field-educator"?


Blackberry, next time that you have some idle time start jotting down a coaching plan for a season. Figure in that you have two 2 hour (at most, mine run 11/2 hours) practices. Figure that you emphasize technical, unit and tactical skills and need to get all 15 plus subs on the same page. Exactly when do you fit in the rare occurrence of the ops kickoff going in goal?

Yes, I would expect experienced members of the deep three to know how to handle these kinds of situations but consider this: We don't get complete agreement on refereeing this situation so you shouldn't expect coaches to arrive at an approach that will be consistent with how you would rule.
 

SimonSmith


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Why don't players get told this sort of thing???????? Don't you all get fed up when you become the "on-field-educator"?


Blackberry, next time that you have some idle time start jotting down a coaching plan for a season. Figure in that you have two 2 hour (at most, mine run 11/2 hours) practices. Figure that you emphasize technical, unit and tactical skills and need to get all 15 plus subs on the same page. Exactly when do you fit in the rare occurrence of the ops kickoff going in goal?

Yes, I would expect experienced members of the deep three to know how to handle these kinds of situations but consider this: We don't get complete agreement on refereeing this situation so you shouldn't expect coaches to arrive at an approach that will be consistent with how you would rule.
A couple of points.

First, though you only get 90 minutes with them, they have other time to learn and seek out learning opportunities. The time I spend physically training is only part of my preparation.

Secondly, why not just tell them "don't run the risk. If you want the scrum back, just dot the ball down immediately. Don't do anything else at all." That removes any possibility of being on the wrong side of the referee decision.
 

OB..


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I'd actually say the opposite -- for me if the defender reaches the ball, picks up the ball, glances up field and touches it down -- then that's 'without delay' and options.
Since there is no discernible benefit in picking up the ball if the only intention is to ground it, then why pick it up in the first place? Keep it simple.

But if the ball comes to rest in the in goal, and the defender stands over it, doing nothing, waiting for the oppo to run up and force him to play it, and eventually when the oppo get close, quickly picks and dots it down, then I'd say that was delay.
As has been pointed out earlier, the law refers to "any other action with the ball". That does not cover standing there looking around without touching the ball.

On the other hand surely picking the ball up is indeed "any other action with the ball".

If the player's aim in playing the ball is to ground it, that is what he should do. Why mess around and confuse the issue?
 

Dickie E


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What is the point of taking a look if you intend to touch down anyway?

The player takes a look to assess his options - will I run it, kick it, pass it or dot it down? Weighing up options is what rugby is all about.
 

ChrisR

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The 'scrum center' option was introduced to discourage teams from kicking off into the opponents goal with the intent of gaining ground by forcing a 22.

Whereas, as OB has pointed out, it make good coaching sense to simply ground the ball and get the scrum center what negative impact is there in simply picking it up, taking a peek and dotting it down. If you penalize that action by disallowing the scrum center I would consider you to be an insufferable pedantic prick.
 

Blackberry


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Here's what the law means: you can ground the ball and get a scrum back at the centre unless you tried another option first.
 

Browner

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Perhaps the various referee interpretations ???

OB's hard line interpretation of "delay" could easy get you painted as a gotcha ref IMO, week in week out I don't see referees operating to that standard.
Most seem to operate a 'don't take a stride' or 'decide within say 1/2 secs'.

Notwithstanding these observations, in this clip https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=28&v=Z5SzVvpIVxo CJ introduces "immediately" [an alternative to delay] into his phraseology , however the player didn't have possession it merely bounced & touched him, so , if the ball strikes you have you delayed??? or does delay only happen if you're in possession?

IMO, being adjudged to be delaying when not in possession/control opens another can of worms entirely

oops, clip didn't work, try

https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=28&v=Z5SzVvpIVxo
 

ChrisR

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If you stand with one foot on the ball are you 'in possession'?

If you stand there, one foot on the ball as the ops run down the pitch are you delaying?

Would it be different if you didn't have your foot on the ball.

No can of worms for me. If you are in playing distance of the ball and elect to take no action to either take possession or ground the ball then at some point you are 'delaying' and will lose the scrum center option.
 

OB..


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Whereas, as OB has pointed out, it make good coaching sense to simply ground the ball and get the scrum center what negative impact is there in simply picking it up, taking a peek and dotting it down.
It confuses the issue. If you are not assessing other options, there is no point whatsoever in taking a look first. In fact taking a look effectively tells the referee that you are indeed assessing other options. I see no positive benefit in taking a look if you have already decided to ground the ball.
If you penalize that action by disallowing the scrum center I would consider you to be an insufferable pedantic prick.
I find that comment unnecessarily offensive. My view is entirely consistent with the law and moreover it makes life simpler for referees and players.
 

crossref


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my difference with you OB - is that I don't see 'without delay' precluding the player from looking up and assessing options.
often he'll run to collect the ball with his back to play, I don't think the Law is intended to stop him from gathering the ball, looking up to see where everyone is, and dotting it down to get the scrum back.

conversely if the ball is on the ground in goal I think the Law does preclude him from standing next to it for a prolonged period of time before taking action to touch down.
 

Browner

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No can of worms for me.

If you are in playing distance of the ball and elect to take no action to either take possession or ground the ball then at some point you are 'delaying' and will lose the scrum center option.

so anyone who sidesteps or avoids the bouncing ball or its direction change catches them by surprise [as per clip] , falls into that category , sounds a bit gotcha to me , id rather see something C&O.
 
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