Rugby rules introduction of new high tackle sanction

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World Rugby has issued its guidelines in clarifying what constitutes a penalty, yellow card or red card in the instances of shoulder charges and high tackles.

With research demonstrating that 76 per cent of concussions occur in the tackle, with 72 per cent of those to the tackler, and that head injury risk is 4.2 times greater when tacklers are upright, the framework is aimed at changing player behaviour in this priority area, via the promotion of safer technique and builds on the January 2017 edict on tougher sanctioning of high tackles.

“Available as a step-by-step PDF, also supported by an educational video that illustrates what match officials are looking for when determining a sanction.”

World Rugby has also outlined as follows which of these merits a penalty, yellow card or red card.

Red Card

  • Shoulder charge (no arms tackle) direct to the head or neck of the ball carrier, and mitigation is not applied
  • High tackle with any contact between the tackler’s shoulder or head and the Ball Carrier’s head or neck, with high degree of danger, and mitigation is not applied
  • High tackle with first contact from the tackler’s arm, direct to the BC’s head or neck, with high degree of danger, and mitigation is not applied

Yellow Card

  • Any red card offence where mitigation is applied (as per framework)
  • Shoulder charge to the body (no head or neck contact), with high degree of danger
  • High tackle with any contact between the tackler’s shoulder or head and the BC’s head or neck, with low degree of danger, and mitigation is not applied
  • High tackle with first contact from the tackler’s arm, direct to the BC’s head or neck with low degree of danger, and mitigation is not applied
  • High tackle with first contact from the tackler’s arm, which starts elsewhere on the body and then slips or moves up to the BC’s head or neck, with high degree of danger, and mitigation is not applied

Penalty

  • Any yellow card offence where mitigation is applied (as per framework)
  • Shoulder charge to the body (no head or neck contact), with low degree of danger
  • High tackle with first contact from the tackler’s arm, which starts elsewhere on the body and then slips or moves up to the BC’s head or neck, with low degree of danger and no mitigating factors
  • High tackle with first contact above or over the shoulder of the ball carrier, but without contact to the head or neck of the ball carrier during the execution of the tackle (seat belt tackle

 

 

 

 

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