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Thread: Play in spirit of the game, referee warns

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    Legend Contributor Flamethrower's Avatar
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    Play in spirit of the game, referee warns

    Play in spirit of the game, referee warns
    By DAVID LONG - Sunday News | Sunday, 10 February 2008
    Play in spirit of the game, referee warns - Rugby news & coverage - Stuff.co.nz


    Top whistle blower Lyndon Bray has urged teams not to use cynical tactics to exploit the experimental law variations.

    With the Super 14 kicking off next weekend, it's still a mystery how teams will adjust their game plans, especially the South African sides.

    With most penalty offences being downgraded to free-kicks, there could be a tendency for teams to cheat more at the breakdown. But Bray hopes that's not the case and warns teams they'll feel his wrath if they go down that path.

    "I hope (teams won't cheat) because from what I've seen in New Zealand we've entered into the spirit of what these changes mean for the game," Bray said.

    "What everyone's got to realise is that if I give a freekick I still have the opportunity to warn and I still have the yellow card and can go to a penalty, so those punitive actions still exist for the referee.

    "My responsibility is to make sure I get on top of any negativity, just as with the old game.

    "What has changed though is the thinking around the tackler and the way the tackler is either getting to his feet or getting out of the way.

    "Coaches and players are buying into that and so are we. So we'll see a faster decision from the referee and a faster release of the ball."

    Just like players and coaches, to a certain extent referees will be venturing into the unknown this season, although as it's looking like rugby is going to be a faster game refs will need to be in peak physical shape.

    "There's a physical element in terms of the game moving on," Bray said. "But it's more fluid in a sense in that you can keep moving, which in a way is easier than stop-starting all the time.

    "It's having the ability to switch your mind off the last play and go straight into the new play, so we'll probably have less down-time.

    "It's definitely going to be trial and error and the challenge is to get the balance right."

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    Legend Contributor brokendown gunfighter's Avatar
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    lyndon actually reffed in Perth for a couple of seasons in the late 90's

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    Veteran Contributor JediKnight's Avatar
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    Let's hope the refs keep in the spirit of the game & make correct decisions (not just refs but touchies & TMOs).

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    Immortal GIGS20's Avatar
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    Lyndon is right to make that call before the season starts, but the amount of cynicism employed by teams on the pitch will be directly proportional to the stringency of his enforcement of the rules. Rugby teams (those from South Africa in particular...but not exclusively) are famous for pusing all the way up to the limit and remaining there for extended periods. I'm sure some south african teams keep pushing the limit until the Ref warns a player with the threat of yellow before backing off.

    Ritchie McCaw is similarly famous for entering from the side of the ruck and failing to bind in the scrum.....he won't stop that until the refs start pinging him for it (why should he?)

    So .....Well said Mr Bray, I like the attitude....I'll believe it when you and your peers deliver on the field CONSISTENTLY!

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    C'mon the

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    Discipline is something that bodes in our favour against the Sharks last year we used it to beat them and this year with new laws, less leadership and the more frustration those things bring they'll probably be worse discipline wise. You only have to look at their trial match with the Lions to see that if you keep the pressure on they'll screw up.

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    I would have thought the whole point of testing the ELVs is to find out how they can be exploited, otherwise why not just codify them? They ELVs came about because the existing rules promote a disproportionately defensive game - they wouldn't need changing if everyone "played in the spirit of the game".

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    Immortal GIGS20's Avatar
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    Andy, I know rugby is 'the game played in heaven' but only once we actually run onto pearly gates park are we likely to see every team play within the spirit of the laws (even then I have my doubts about Schalk Burgher)

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    C'mon the

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