It Happened to Me

The following scenarios have happened to our members.

Subject In goal
Situation The ball is kicked by the attacking team and stops in the in goal. A player from each team is racing to get to the ball first. The defending player wins the race but hasn’t got time to ground the ball so he kicks the ball over the dead ball line. 22 or 5 metre scrum?
Decision 22 drop out. All that matters is who put the ball in the in goal. Who makes it dead is immaterial.
Subject In goal
Situation There is a defending scrum 5 metres out from the goal line. The defending team wins the ball. The halfback throws a dive pass to his fullback. The fullback completely misses the ball and it goes over the dead ball line without being touched. 5 metre scrum or penalty for throwing the ball out?
Decision 5m scrum.
Subject Uncontested Scrums
Situation A prop was late to the game (went to wrong ground) so the first scrum had to be uncontested. The prop then turned up 5 mins late. His team wanted contested scrums, the other team objected. Can I reinstate contested scrums in this situation?
Decision SJRU 2011 Competition Rules allow you do that. See Rule 4.14(D)iii.
Subject Water runners
Situation Knox ahead by 7 points mid way through first half, hot and dusty field. Knox awarded a penalty under the black dot, 20 meters out. As the kicking tee comes on, carried by a guy with a water bottle, another manager runs on to half way with 3 bottles. Referee objects to having 2 water boys on while the kick is being taken. Orders off the second one who walks slowly back to the sideline. Ref then reverses the penalty and awards it to Liverpool ??
Decision The ref's call.
Subject Uncontested scrums in School games
Situation In uncontested scrums, I understand that the No.8 cannot take the ball away from the back of the scrum. I reffed on Saturday for Shore School 4ths and had occasion to introduce uncontested scrums when a Joeys prop left the field. I explained the rules of the uncontested scrums but neglected to mention the No.8 taking the ball away. Of course, first scrum the Shore No.8 took the ball away. As the Shore boy did this in good faith, I elected to allow play to continue and then allowed this situation to occur for the rest of the match. I would like the group's opinion of my decision, and also what restrictions are placed upon the respective halves in these circumstances.
Decision The number 8 may play the ball. No special restrictions apply to half backs.
Subject Hands in Ruck
Situation I gave a pre-game speech re when I call a ruck there must be no hands in the ruck. During the game I called ruck. The LAST player in the ruck disengaged (ie unbound) and picked up the ball which was at his feet. What do I do? Do I penalise him for hands in the ruck? Or is the ball out and hence it is no longer a ruck?
Decision If last man then OK as long as not bound by other players when picking up the ball.
Subject Maul
Situation A maul crosses the goal line and stops moving but the attackers in possession can not ground the ball. It is ripped by a team mate who dives and grounds it. Is it a try?
Decision If the action is within the short time usually given for a ball to come out of a stationary maul then OK; otherwise it was held up. The meeting felt that 4 seconds was about the right time.
Subject Lineout numbers
Situation At a lineout the throwing side receiver pretended to join the lineout and then stopped. His opposite did join to oppose him. Were numbers laws breached?
Decision The Law states that the non-throwing team needs to be given time to match numbers and if he joined as a result of the throwing team's pretence and was not afforded time to leave then he is not in the wrong: PLAY ON
Subject Deliberately slowing play at penalty kick / free kick
Situation Captain deliberately slowing down play at a quick PK/FK by approaching referee
Decision Easy ways to do this were: call out "play on" and advise the captain to "move back! You are offside!" If the reason has already been signalled then you have the right to let play continue quickly.
Subject Dangerous Tackle
Situation Ball kicked, defenceless receiver waiting for ball. Kicking team player on-side ran through and pushed waiting player to the ground with intent but without malice and without injury apparent to the ref. Should advantage be played?
Decision If a tackle is dangerous then it is YELLOW CARD or more. Just because a tackle is late or early does not mean it is dangerous. If there was no issue of safety then advantage should be played. In this instance the early tackle did not appear to be dangerous [but it was illegal under obstruction law, not tackle law].
Subject Interchange of Players
Situation Many players are being interchanged in a game and the ref thinks an unfair advantage is being created. What should he do?
Decision The SJRU Competition Rules allow for unlimited interchange. However, Ref does control when the players can interchange and only when ball is dead (scrum or lineout). From 2011 and for U15 and up, there are just two scheduled interchange opportunities per half.
Subject Charge Down
Situation "I have just finished dealing with a call from a bemused coach in relation to a charge down. He described the following situation which occurred in a recent midi game. One of his players legally charged down a drop out and the ball rebounded into the in-goal. A player from the same team who was on-side grounded the ball. The referee disallowed the try and awarded a scrum to the defending side for a knock-on (which he awarded 5 metres out). When asked about the incident after the game the referee stated that it wasn't a charge down because the player did not turn his head to the side and therefore he was intentionally knocking the ball on.
Decision The referee was in error and did not understand the charge down Laws, nor the safety issues involved in teaching players to go into a charge down by turning their heads away from the kick and the kicker at a time when there is likely to be physical contact. Charge downs are intentional and are not illegal.
Subject Fair catch
Situation Blue kick deep toward red 22; red player stationary takes catch and calls Mark; whistle blows play stops and teams move toward respective positions; referee arrives at 'Mark' to realise red player was outside 22m. What is the right decision?
Decision Scrum to Blue at the mark as the 'attacking team' as it could not be said that either team was moving forward prior to stoppage.
Subject Free Kicks
Situation I had an issue with our referee on the weekend (Burke Cup - Colleagues vs St Pats), as he didn't know the law relating to free kicks. As an open-side flanker, it's a law I like but more often than not this year I have been busted for it. Here's what happens:


* Free kick awarded to St Pats within their 22 at a crucial part of the match.

* Kicker gets the ball and walks back a few steps to wind up for a kick.

* My team and I retire our 10m (I actually asked the ref if I was back my 10m and he said yes)

* As soon as the kicker moves to kick, I charge trying to prevent the kick

* I get penalised (full arm penalty) on the mark much to the St Pats crowds' pleasure!!
Decision The player has good grounds for being unhappy. Have a look at Law 21 8 (e) and (f). These laws have been in place since the inception of the Free Kick Law. As soon as a player starts to approach to kick, his opponents can charge with an intention of stopping the kick from being taken. They can charge down the kick (play on afterwards) and can attempt to wrap up the kicker (scrum to them if successful).
Subject Knock on over goal line
Situation The attacking blue team kicked through and then knocked on just before the goal line. The ball was propelled over the goal line by blue but then forced by red. Should I play advantage and so award a 22 dropout or should there be a 5m scrum, red feed? I had a NSW referee coach in attendance and knew the safe decision was to go for the scrum but there was a clearly greater advantage [confirmed by red captain] to awarding a 22 drop. What would you do?
Decision Law 12.1 states; "the outcome of a knock-on or throw-forward (c) Knock-on or throw-forward into the in-goal. If an attacking player knocks-on or throws-forward in the field of play and the ball goes into the opponents’ in-goal and it is made dead there, a scrum is awarded where the knock-on or throw-forward happened."


As the specific instance of the ball being made dead is covered by this Law the ref has lost the option to carry on with advantage and should apply the Law as stated. If red had wanted play to continue and try to obtain an advantage they had the option to run the ball.