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.
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.
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“Negative effect” – Nigel Owens wants FIVE law changes to encourage ‘expansive rugby’
The Welshman, who hung up his whistle two years ago, has come up with four possible changes to encourage expansive rugby.
#1. Scrap the goal-line dropout
Owens wrote: “As for goal-line dropouts, I was a big fan initially because I felt it would prevent attacking teams from numerous pick-and-gos near the try line, with teams instead attempting to move the ball wide to avoid being held up and losing possession. But I’m not sure it has worked as planned. We still see plenty of pick-and-gos until teams get over, we still see plenty of mauls and the number of collisions hasn’t decreased.
“We are also seeing fewer scrums near the goal line, and to be honest I’m not sure that is a good thing. The scrum needs to be an important part of the game, and right now we are not seeing the benefits of it. Rugby must continue to be a game for all shapes and sizes, and at all levels, too.
Attacking teams are also kicking longer knowing that if the ball rolls dead, the defending team has to do a goal-line dropout and they can get the ball back. We’ve also lost the short dropouts we used to see from the 22-metre line where teams would compete to win the ball back, or a quick dropout would be taken, because teams now backed up on their goal line just kick the ball long to escape and what happens? The opposition kick it back.
“From initially believing it would work, I would now like the goal-line dropout law to go to be honest. If anything it is having a negative effect.”