World Rugby reduce scrums among number of major new laws, David Flatman slams changes - Ruck

World Rugby reduce scrums among number of major new laws, David Flatman slams changes

In a bid to enhance the spectacle of rugby union, World Rugby has unveiled a trio of law amendments set to come into force from July 1, with England’s upcoming tour of New Zealand set to showcase these changes in action.

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The foremost alteration entails the removal of the scrum as an option following a free-kick, compelling teams to either kick or tap instead.

This move aims to stimulate more expansive gameplay and discourage prolonged bouts of ‘kick tennis’, a phenomenon that often left spectators disenchanted.

Furthermore, adjustments to the offside law during kicks in open play seek to foster greater fluidity. Under the revised rule, players in an offside position must now retreat, creating additional space for the opposition to exploit.

The amendment, coined the ‘Dupont Law’ after France’s scrum-half Antoine Dupont, rectifies a loophole that allowed offside players to advance unchecked.

The final amendment targets player safety by outlawing the “crocodile roll”, a potentially hazardous maneuver involving the rolling of a player on their feet out of the tackle area. This infraction will now incur a penalty.

Moreover, World Rugby has unveiled a trial of a revised red card process, set to be implemented in competitions such as the WXV women’s tournament and the Pacific Nations Cup.

This new protocol mandates automatic bans for red cards involving foul play, while permitting the replacement of a sent-off player after 20 minutes, thus restoring a team to its full complement of 15 players.

Reflecting on these changes, World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont expressed optimism about their impact on the sport’s entertainment value. “I believe that the law amendments and suite of closed trials will add to the entertainment factor,”

The latest odds for the 2025 British & Irish Lions Tour Captain – by BonusCodeBets

1/1 – James Ryan (50%)

4/1 – Maro Itoje (20%)

5/1 – Jac Morgan (16.7%)

10/1 -Jamie Ritchie (9.1%)

16/1 – Owen Farrell (5.9%)

20/1 – Peter O’Mahony (4.76%)

The current 36-man British & Irish Lions squad for 2025, according to the bookies

Andy Farrell faces numerous challenging decisions leading up to finalising his Lions squad, yet bookmakers appear confident in predicting the players destined for Australia next summer. 

We found it intriguing to project a smaller squad based on the favored contenders according to bookmakers’ odds as of April19, 2024.

The Lions will play a New Zealand and Australia invitational XV as part of their nine-match tour down under in 2025. 

The historic fixture in Adelaide will precede Test matches with the Wallabies in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. 

A sell-out at the 100,000-capacity Melbourne Cricket Ground would smash records for a Lions Test match. 

The series finale will be played in front of more than 80,000 fans in Sydney’s Olympic Park.

The 2025 Lions tour fixtures in full

  • Saturday 28 June: v Western Force, Optus Stadium, Perth
  • Wednesday 2 July: v Queensland Reds, Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
  • Saturday 5 July: v New South Wales Waratahs, Allianz Stadium, Sydney
  • Wednesday 9 July: v ACT Brumbies, GIO Stadium, Canberra
  • Saturday 12 July: v Invitational Australia & NZ XV, Adelaide Oval
  • Saturday 19 July: First Test, Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
  • Tuesday 22 July: v Melbourne Rebels, Marvel Stadium, Melbourne
  • Saturday 26 July: Second Test, Melbourne Cricket Ground
  • Saturday 2 August: Third Test, Accor Stadium, Sydney

The bolded players in our proposed Lions squad represent the starting XV, according to current odds.



  • Duhan van der Merwe (Scotland) – 1/16
  • James Lowe (Ireland) – 1/8
  • Hugo Keenan (Ireland) – 1/5
  • Tommy Freeman (England) – 4/9
  • Immanuel Feyi-Waboso (England) – 8/11
  • Mack Hansen (Ireland) – 2/1


  • Bundee Aki (Ireland) – 1/5
  • Ollie Lawrence (England) – 1/4
  • Sione Tuipulotu (Scotland) – 2/7
  • Robbie Henshaw (Ireland) – 8/11


  • George Ford (England) – 1/10
  • Marcus Smith (England) – 8/15
  • Finn Russell (Scotland) – 8/11