Thanks to continuous reset scrums, countless aimless kicks and frequent debatable penalties, the game of rugby has sadly become as ill as the world, with fans infected with frustration and boredom due to the lack of attacking rugby on display and the stop-start nature of the modern game, writes Dean Boyle.
Here are 3 law changes I’d like to see introduced to make rugby a better spectacle for all to enjoy:
1. Award a free-kick after one reset scrum
A free-kick will encourage the team with possession to attack in the form of quick tap. This is because it doesn’t allow for a kick for goal and kicking for touch will result in the opposition receiving the lineout throw.
With this option, teams will have to scrum more accurately without spending tedious amounts of time on reset after reset. It should be awarded to the team in possession, but they can still be penalised for a clear and obvious infringement at the first scrum.
This will limit scrums to one, bringing more of a flow to the game by creating more time for actual rugby to be played.
2. Allow for a ‘mark’ from any kick
As it stands, when a player catches the ball on the full (without it bouncing) in their own 22m area, they can call for a ‘mark’.
By allowing for this anywhere on the field will limit teams box-kicking and aimless kicking in general as it will give away attacking ball anywhere on the field.
It will limit kicking and encourage using the ball to run unless clearing for touch.
After all, we all want to see tries scores – not kicks made!
3. Create a 5m gap from the ruck on defence
This is the law I’d like to see changed most as it will allow more space on attack, giving teams the freedom to attack the advantage line and offload in the tackle to continue the attacking move .
Rugby league has this rule and there is a reason it is a more popular sport than rugby union in Australia as it offers more of an attacking spectacle.
Rugby was intended to be a balance of physicality and speed, strength and skill.
However, it has turned into a defence-minded sport where sides with less possession more often than not end up winning.
These three changes would restore the balance and bring back the spectacle the game was always meant to be.