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Posted by: P G Tips
Date: 15/11/2019 08:29

Agree- seems a bit of a cop out.

Sam Underhill interviewed on the same topic in May:

“The breakdown is one of the last grey areas of the game for me. The law at the moment is you have to make an effort to bind before you hit a ruck. The letter of the law is you make an effort to bind onto a player before you enter a ruck. That never happens.

“It doesn’t happen because it can’t happen. If you try and bind on to someone before you try and move them off the breakdown, you’re going to be there late and you’re not going to have enough momentum to get them off the ball.

“I understand it is the way the game is played and it’s commonly interpreted the same, but my issue is if all clean-outs are illegal by the letter of the law then you can’t differentiate between the bad ones and the okay ones.

“If everyone is breaking the law by not binding before they hit a ruck you can’t penalise the people that really don’t do it right, those who hit them hard, go off their feet and stuff.

“I’m not going moan about it because it is part of the game, it is how it is played at the moment, but it can be a bit confusing at times. I’d probably like to see it treated similarly to a tackle because that is effectively what a breakdown is now.

“It is sort of a tackle but the problem is you get a lot of them where there is no effort, there is no arms involved and players are flying in off their feet. It’s a lot of momentum. If you’re trying to get over the ball and have two blokes who are over 100 kilos flying into you off their feet, it can be pretty difficult to survive that.

“It’s sort of acknowledged that that is the way it is at the moment but I’d probably like to see the ambiguity cleaned up. Also for the refs because the refs have a hard enough job as it is being consistent in their interpretation and in being fair.

“For them they have got a pretty hard job because I don’t think the guidelines are particularly clear as to what is and isn’t okay – and you probably see that a spectator. It’s a part of the game but if you want to make the game safer and reduce injury rates, it’s probably a good place to start,” he continued.

“You know it [the impact] is coming but the physics of it are pretty difficult if you have got that much momentum coming at you that quickly, it is nearly impossible to survive that.

“If you have got the majority of clean-outs where there is two players and they’re both off their feet and neither of them are making an effort to do a wrap in any way, then you’re going to struggle to survive.”

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