Referees in Wales
- Jan 5, 2018
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- Current Referee grade:
- Level 2
The 2009 book (the year of the ruling) said:The old version said may and they changed to must. I believe the old version said the non-offending team may reduce the number in the scrum to match, but didn't have to, therefore they had the option of 8v7 or 7v7 scrum in the event that the other team lost a forward. This was changed to state they MUST have equal numbers and therefore any reduction in numbers on one team MUST be matched by the other team.
This u19 variation and update to state each team MUST have equal numbers in the scrum is a safety-oriented law, not technical or administrative. Reducing the scrum to 7v7 when a back is sent off has no bearing on safety and is not the intended outcome, despite the poorly written instructions.
At least we all agree that the Powers That Be did a poor job trying to clear this up!
Though not in the interveening year apparently "...when the team cannot field eight suitably trained players in its scrum..."the thing is - it's quite rare that a team actually CANNOT supply eight forwards.
1 - a front row or second row player is missing, they'll often have another one on the bench
2 - if a back row player is missing - anyone can paly back row (no STE)
The laws don't really address that either - what happens if a team make a substitution to maintain eight forwards. Are they allowed to ?
In fact in the case of front rows, if they are able to maintain contested scrums, they are required to
The 2009 book (the year of the ruling) said:
A team must have fewer than eight players in its scrum when either the team
cannot field a complete team, or a player is sent off for Foul Play, or a player leaves the field
because of injury.
2010 the book said:
Exception: A team must have fewer than eight players in its scrum when the team cannot
field eight suitably trained players in its scrum due to either the team not fielding a
complete team, or a forward player being sent off or temporarily suspended for foul play, or
a forward player leaving the field because of injury.
This stayed until 2018 when "may" was introduced:
When a team is reduced to fewer than 15 for any reason, then the number of players in
each team in the scrum may be similarly reduced. Where a permitted reduction is made
by one team, there is no requirement for the other team to make a similar reduction.
However, a team must not have fewer than five players in the scrum.
UNDER-19 Law variations
in 2022 the law book replaces may with must, suggesting things are reverting back to the pre 2009 ruling position. reason could there be?
I have copies for the 1970s onwards, plus some earlier ones, including a photocopy of the first edition.Aside from the current topic, where do you find a copy of older versions of the laws? Do you more experienced people have personal copies, or are they online somewhere?
https://1drv.ms/u/s!AuT08smH9xrYuKFzrUAnfQBlUMGJtw?e=0S3XfO Is a link to mine. Let me know if it worksI could try a "file share" with what I've got let me look later.
I have all the ones you listed. AFAIK they have stopped printing law books and put them on-line instead.https://1drv.ms/u/s!AuT08smH9xrYuKFzrUAnfQBlUMGJtw?e=0S3XfO Is a link to mine. Let me know if it works
I use this site - http://www.rugbyfootballhistory.com/laws.htm - which also has some background on the original laws.Aside from the current topic, where do you find a copy of older versions of the laws? Do you more experienced people have personal copies, or are they online somewhere?