We give you the lowdown on point s of law in this new series
When Sam Underhill’s try against the All Blacks was ruled out for Courtney Lawes being offside when charging down TJ Perenara (above), it caused a lot of debate. We ran an online poll asking whether people thought he was onside or offside and the result was exactly 50-50!
At the start of 2017-18, World Rugby introduced a law that created a ruck when a single player stood over the ball in a tackle. In April 2018 the law was amended slightly, meaning offside lines are created when one player arrives but a ruck is created when at least one player from each side are in contact. Tony Spreadbury, RFU’s head of professional game match officials “In this situation, no England player was on his feet. There was no ruck but an offside line due to the NZ players on their feet over the ball.
“Each team’s offside line runs parallel to the goal-line through the hindmost point of any player in the tackle or on their feet over the ball.
“The tackle ends when a player on their feet gains possession of the ball (not just placing hands on it) or the ball leaves the tackle area. The officials had to decide if (Lawes) was onside before the ball left the tackle area or the NZ nine picked it up.” @ugomonye HUUUUGE decision, but think the TMO has got it right @JontyUpNorth Tackle only, no ruck. Ball was out of the tackle area hence tackle over, no offside line. A tackle ends differently to a ruck @RonanB It was tight but Lawes was just in front of the last foot when the ball was picked up @DJBurges If Lawes was offside, then every player at every ruck ever formed is offside @RobGodfrey1979 Lawes was onside! Scrum-half had hands on @stodders79 Both teams allowed leeway at offside line. If either fell foul that’s price of taking the risk