World Rugby is set to trial a new way of deciding a winner in drawn matches, with the contest settled by a one-on-one match-up between an attacker and defender.
According to Mail Online, the concept will be tested in the new Rugby X, a five-a-side competition that will take place at London’s O2 Arena next month.
World Rugby have reportedly given the go-ahead to the trial, with the view to possibly seeing it replace penalty kicks at goal. That is still the method of deciding drawn knockout matches in the Champion Cup and World Cup.
The way the new format would work will involve one attacking player from the first team receiving the ball 30 metres out from the opposition’s tryline, with one defender from the second team stood on their 5-metre line.
If the attacker scores within the 10 seconds permitted, then the second team would have to match that or they’d lose the match.
The inaugural RugbyX tournament is being organised by commercial rights agency TRM and will feature men’s and women’s competitions happening in parallel over two sessions, each 2.5 hours in duration, enabling fans to see some of the world’s best players. Competing teams come from the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series – England, Ireland, France, USA and Argentina and will be joined by Barbarians FC.
Technical Director for RugbyX and Fiji’s former Olympic gold medal winning coach, Ben Ryan, said: “The RugbyX laws have been developed with the objective of encouraging simple, fast and skilful gameplay with minimal stoppages, whilst retaining the core fundamentals of the game we love. We look forward to the first ever showcase of RugbyX at the O2 Arena, the World’s number one entertainment destination.”