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Rugby League

Super League may change penalty rules

23rd April 2019, 18:17 by Nick Harris

Super League officials have announced they are working to try and cut out "play-the-ball" penalties in the game.

Players in the competition deliberately play the ball into a member of the opposition who has failed to get out of the way and fallen behind him in the tackle, leading to a penalty every time.

It has become quite clear that players are doing it on purpose to win a penalty which, the laws of the game state, has to be given for a player failing to get out of the way.

Fans and former players alike have condemned the tactic and now the game's officials are trying to do something about it.

A statement read: "Super League has been increasingly concerned by the rising number of players taking advantage of the strict application of the laws around players lying in the ruck at the play-the-ball and has been working with the RFL to find a solution.

"Super League is keen to stop players using the rules to gain an unfair advantage and supports referees who penalise obvious gamesmanship.

"Super League endorses the combination of this with allowing match officials to apply a less strict, judgement-based interpretation of the rules based on observations at each ruck."

The obvious worry is that some refs will penalise a player one week whilst another might not do the week after, so further clarity is expected.

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Nick Harris is a long-standing journalist who specialises in football and rugby league. An avid golfer, Nick also follows the major boxing fights closely.

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