The International Rugby Board’s Rugby Committee has ratified recommendations made at the Experimental Law Variations (ELV) Conference on which ELVs should be recommended to the IRB Council for adoption into Law.
The Rugby Committee met in Dublin earlier this week to review the ELV programme, including the SANZAR variations and the collective recommendations of the two-day Conference in London last month in order to formulate its final recommendations for the IRB Council meeting on May 13.
In total, 10 of the 13 ELVs that comprise the current global trial programme have been recommended by the Rugby Committee for adoption into Law, supporting the recommendations made by the Game’s senior stakeholders at the Lensbury Conference.
These ELVs include the five-metre scrum offside line, the quick throw-in, lifting of lineout jumpers, assistant referees and kicking directly into touch from the 22. The Committee also made recommendations that three Union-specific ELVs be adopted into Law, including the ability for a Union to implement a maximum 15-minute half time in matches under its jurisdiction.
The Rugby Committee evaluation is the latest step in the global ELV consultation and evaluation process which began with the Conference of the Game in 2004. On May 13 the IRB Council will decide which ELVs, if any, should be fully integrated into Law.
Recommendations for the IRB Council
The following is recommended to the IRB Council for adoption into Law:
Law 6 – Assistant Referees able to assist Referees in any way the Referee requires
Law 19 – If a team puts the ball back in their own 22 and the ball is subsequently kicked directly into touch there is no gain in ground
Law 19 – A quick throw may be thrown in straight or towards the throwing team’s goal line
Law 19 – The receiver at the lineout must be two metres back away from the lineout
Law 19 – The player who is in opposition to the player throwing in the ball must stand in the area between the five metre line and touch line and must be two metres from the line of touch and at least two metres from the lineout
Law 19 – Lineout players may pre-grip a jumper before the ball is thrown in
Law 19 – The lifting of lineout jumpers is permitted
Law 20 – Introduction of an offside line five metres behind the hindmost feet of the Scrum
Law 20 – Scrum half offside line at the Scrum
Law 20 – The corner posts are no longer considered to be touch in goal except when the ball is grounded against the post
Union-specific ELVs Recommended to Council:
Unions may implement rolling substitutions at defined levels of the Game
A Union having a jurisdiction over a Game may implement a half time interval of not more than 15 minutes
A Union may implement the Under 19 Scrum Law Variation at a defined level of the Game under its jurisdiction
The following is not recommended to the IRB Council for adoption into Law:
Law 17 – Maul – Head and Shoulders not to be lower than hips
Law 17 – Maul – Pulling Down the Maul
Law 19 – Freedom for each team to determine Lineout Numbers
The Sanctions and Tackle/Ruck ELVs will not be recommended to the IRB Council for adoption into Law. However, the Rugby Committee has deferred these areas for further consultation.