22 drop even though didn't end up in goal?

Flish

Rugby Club Member
#1
Odd one from a game playing in yesterday, blues kick and chase, but too long and would have gone dead in goal, *but* thanks to the huge puddle in front of the posts the ball stops dead in the puddle, in the field of play. Ref peeps on safety grounds, this we all bought, but he awarded a 22 drop out to greens, because it *would* have gone dead, is this right.

We thought it should be a scrum to restart, not sure where from, or even who gets the put in, but we would have accepted the call, but a 22 because it 'would have happened' seems odd, thoughts?
 

Accylad

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#2
For me the puddle in goal would have been dealt with prior to KO with brushes and forks.

hopefully the ref played to the point where is could have been dangerous eg players dive on ball in puddle and result mess on ground could be dangerous. If a player from either team could get there unopposed and picked it up no need to stop the game.

Then yes if stop for safety restart with scrum. Team last in possession to put in for me. This would be a difficult call to sell if defending team likely to get to the ball first but for the puddle so I might sell the alternative. Hence a reason why the puddle should have been dealt with.....
 

Phil E

, Referees/Trains Referees in England
#3
If there's a "huge" puddle, then you shouldn't be playing on that pitch.
But if you agree to play then you have to accept what the puddle does.

You can't have it both ways.
 

Flish

Rugby Club Member
#4
He dealt with the dog turds, broken bottles and tin cans before, this was a thirds vs 2nds match, so not the top tier of facilities :-(. The puddle was fairly self policing, no one wanted to dive in it and the game managed to naturally avoid it until this moment mid second half.

There was no real contest for this kick chase, and like I said it would have gone dead before a player got near, so yes, defence would have been a bit aggrieved if scrum too last in possession, as possession *would have* been theirs, it was just the 22 drop award that confused most of us
 

RobLev

Rugby Club Member
#5
For me the puddle in goal would have been dealt with prior to KO with brushes and forks.

hopefully the ref played to the point where is could have been dangerous eg players dive on ball in puddle and result mess on ground could be dangerous. If a player from either team could get there unopposed and picked it up no need to stop the game.

Then yes if stop for safety restart with scrum. Team last in possession to put in for me. This would be a difficult call to sell if defending team likely to get to the ball first but for the puddle so I might sell the alternative. Hence a reason why the puddle should have been dealt with.....
I agree that there's no justification in Law for a restart 22; but:

Bearing in mind that the ball stopped in the puddle, wouldn't the restart scrum have taken place there...?
 

colesy

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#6
Compromises always have to be made at the lower levels. Teams pitch up with less than 15 players, often much less. No STE front row. Dog poo on the pitch. Junkie's needles in the less salubrious areas. Sometimes rabbit holes that need filled in with sand. The away team gets trapped on the motorway because of a big smash and turn up 45 minutes after the scheduled KO time in the winter with daylight fading fast. No touch judges, appointed or unappointed or arm twisted. The away team cries off when you're in the changing room and ready to go out for your warm up. There's no ref's room and you change with the players. There's no ref's shower and so you shower with the players. You have a changing room to yourself but you're sharing it with the post protectors, the flag poles and the boiler, sometimes the mowing machine. The presence of a big puddle seems just a little trivial. I've been there; my view has always been "let's play on lads, we're all here to get a run out, and if the ball goes near the puddle, I'll blow up." Just like when the one man and his dog refuses to TJ and I say to the captains that my decisions about touch are going to be a bit arbitrary, so under those circumstances would be my decisions regarding the puddle. A 22 DO seems equitable enough to me, given the logic applied by the ref.
 

Dixie

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#7
Technically, the game being stopped on safety grounds, the correct restart was a scrum to the attacking team:

20.4(d) Scrum after any other stoppage. After any other stoppage or irregularity not covered by Law, the team that was moving forward before the stoppage throws in the ball. If neither team was moving forward, the attacking team throws in the ball.


However, as has been mentioned there are times when the technically correct decision is suboptimal. In this case, the referee decided that it would be unfair if the attackers, having overcooked their kick and chase, got a huge benefit from the existence of the puddle. Given that the very playing of the game is a compromise (an "observed" ref allowing a game to kick off in such circumstances would be heavily slated, having ignored the prime safety directive), the ref's decision can perhaps be seen as equitable. Did anyone fancy scrummaging in the puddle?

Law 1.6(b) The referee will attempt to resolve the issues but must not start a match if any part of the ground is considered to be dangerous.
 

Flish

Rugby Club Member
#8
Fair enough, it was one of those things that just seamed odd and none of us were quite sure what *should* have happened, so was intrigued, if nothing else maybe he just didn't sell it confidently enough, of course we didn't know either!
 

crossref

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#9
Personally I think it was the wrong decision. The Law is clear.. So you are duty bound to apply it. Scrum blue, bad luck red... .
 

OB..

, Advises in England
#10
So is the law about not using your hands in a ruck, yet you and all other referee allow the scrum half to dig for the ball. Do you stop a hooker from standing with his feet across the line when throwing in?

Materiality? Contextuality? Empathy?
 

ctrainor

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#11
For me the ref did a good job. Sold his decision well and got on with the game.
I may reffed on many pitches like that and it's all about the players having a game.
I would have perhaps restarted with scrum defence away from the puddle.
 

crossref

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#12
Perhaps the whole game depends on the decision .. Doesn't empathy and equity and materiality require you to referee to the Law
 

Dickie E

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/australia
#13
Personally I think it was the wrong decision. The Law is clear.. So you are duty bound to apply it. Scrum blue, bad luck red... .
An issue with this is that Blue may now start tactically kicking for the puddle in the knowledge that they will get the scrum feed
 

Flish

Rugby Club Member
#15
We're not that good, we had wind advantage too that half, one time we used it the kick was long and ended up in the puddle!
 

Dickie E

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/australia
#16
if they can do that, they def deserve it!
the huge puddle in front of the posts
maybe we have different mental pictures of what 'huge' is


I wonder what the ref would have done if the ball had gone into the puddle from KO.

"George, don't catch the ball. Let it roll into t' puddle and we'll get a scrum back on half way"
 
Last edited:

menace

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/australia
#17
I bet the ref just didn't want to deal with a breakdown in the puddle and get his boots wet!

For Christ sake...it's winter, therefore it's wet, puddles happen....just splash in them and have a bit of fun! You get to be a kid again and slide in the mud and not be told off by your mum or wife! Play on..no need for whistle. Yippee-ky-ay. :pepper: :biggrin:

Ps- forgot the smiles.
 
Last edited:

crossref

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#18
Dickie E:292477 said:
if they can do that, they def deserve it!
the huge puddle in front of the posts
maybe we have different mental pictures of what 'huge' is


I wonder what the ref would have done if the ball had gone into the puddle from KO.

"George, don't catch the ball. Let it roll into t' puddle and we'll get a scrum back on half way"
This is the nice thing about following the Law. We dont have to imagine the 'fairest' response to different unusual events, each ref getting different answers.. We just follow the Law. Indeed following the Law IS the fairest action.

The Law could quite easily have required the Ref to work out what *would* happened and proceed accordingly (indeed, in goal that is the Law). But the Law doesn't say that, it says award a scrum.
 

Na Madrai

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#19
Had a somewhat similiar situation last Saturday.

With my match being called off, I ended up doing a seconds match at a low level. One entire half of the pitch was a sea of mud, not a blade of grass to be seen. After thirty minutes of play, this sea extended pretty much the length of the pitch - thirty minutes each way as we wanted to get into the showers before before the colts playing on the first team pitch.

As the out-half attempted to start the second half, he pointed out to me that when he dropped the ball it stood up on end and he was unable to drop kick it! I spoke to the opposition skipper and informed him that it would be a punt kick to get the match underway.

He agreed and off we went. Sometimes, there are circumstances where referees simply have to make the best of a poor thing!

Incidently, refereed three matches this weekend, all of which ended in a draw! First for meself.



NM
 

Dixie

<img src="http://www.rugbyrefs.com/flags/england.p
#20
Personally I think it was the wrong decision. The Law is clear.. So you are duty bound to apply it. Scrum blue, bad luck red... .
So is the law about not using your hands in a ruck, yet you and all other referee allow the scrum half to dig for the ball. Do you stop a hooker from standing with his feet across the line when throwing in?

Materiality? Contextuality? Empathy?
Another clear law is the one that says you must not start the game if any part of the ground is unsafe. If we've going to be inflexible on clear laws, then the game simply doesn't go ahead if there's a bit of ground where you need to blow up for safety.