Changes can im­prove game

South Wales Evening Post - - LETTERS -

AS we progress through forth­com­ing Six Na­tions and on to the global win­dow of the World Cup maybe now is the time to take a look at how the game needs to take a look at cur­rent is­sues in our game.

Many hard-line rugby sup­port­ers feel that the game is be­com­ing bor­ing with con­stant kick re­turns, lack of pen­e­tra­tion and lat­eral pass­ing moves that go nowhere other than an­other break­down or col­li­sions with the op­po­site num­ber, our skill sets are no longer a key part of the game. Surely now is the time to con­sider adding an­other five yards (me­tres) on to the off­side line to give more op­por­tu­ni­ties for the run­ning game to re­turn. Rather than con­cen­trate on de­fence, rugby is about scor­ing tries not tack­ling.

Of­fi­cials must take ac­tion over the safety of the play­ers at all times and rely more on TMOS to re­lay foul play as neck rolls and high tack­les con­tinue to be missed, but all should be awarded red cards. Play­ers and coaches will soon learn, which all in turn will hope­fully pre­vent more in­juries such as Leigh Half­penny’s.

Also just as im­por­tant is for all ex-rugby play­ers in the com­men­tary box to stop giv­ing their out­dated and ir­rel­e­vant opin­ions on refeer­ing de­ci­sions dur­ing the tele­vised games. The game has changed im­mensely since many of them last played with the hits and tack­les bear­ing no re­sem­blance to the game they once played.

Fi­nally in­stead of con­tin­u­ally neu­ter­ing the scrum and line outs please stop the clock so this part of the game of rugby re­turns to one of what it should be – a test of strength and stamina and not one of how to de­lay progress and take a breather, ball de­liv­ered straight down the mid­dle, no slip­ping the bind to the el­bow and hope­fully the best team wins.

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