Monday, 1 April 2019

World Rugby to consider Golden Oldies tackle laws

Another interesting tit-bit to come out of the recent World Rugby player safety symposium in Paris is a proposal to introduce Golden Oldies type tackling laws into mainstream rugby.

Although precise details have not yet been confirmed and require clarification, it is believed that the proposed new laws would mean that any player wearing red shorts may be "claimed and held" but not tackled, any player wearing gold shorts may not be held or tackled, while any player wearing purple shorts may not be held, tackled, touched or obstructed. All such players, it is proposed, may only run with the ball for a total distance of 15 metres before passing to a team mate.

The devil will be in the detail and obviously there will need to be limits to the numbers of players in special shorts per team, but the proposal is clearly being considered with player safety in mind and would allow teams to protect certain players who would otherwise vulnerable to injury.

World Rugby has confirmed that no decision has yet been made on this matter and no changes would be made until after the World Cup in Japan. If endorsed, however, it is expected that the new laws will initially be trialed in French amateur rugby with a view to being introduced, if successful, by 1st April 2020.

For the record I am in favour of any measure that improves player safety...

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