Uncontested scrummages

Some of you may have noticed some discussions regarding what happens when a team has to go to uncontested scrummages due to either and injury or a yellow or Red card being shown to a front row player. Unfortunately like with other points of law there seems to be a range of opinions from the sidelines but as the man in the Middle the referee should be clear.

This is the scenario that started the discussion.  Fortunately the referee on the day got it right.

This was a level 7 game (D&N1), and both sides had one front row replacement.

Team A substituted (tactically) their tight head in the 1st half.

The replacement tight head was subsequently injured in the second half.

He was duly replaced by the starting tight head, as per regulations.

However, this player (starting tight head) was then sin binned for 10 minutes.

The referee allowed Team A to keep 14 men on the field (as it was the 2nd occasion), but went to uncontested scrums.

He required both teams to have 8 forwards in these scrums.

Here is a link to help you Uncontested Scummages

Promotion and Relegation review 2016-2017

Promotion and relegation review 2016-2017
As you would expect most of the promotions and relegations have been decided but there are one or two that are going down to the wire fixtures left which should provide an interesting end to the league season. Throw in the odd play off and there is still plenty to talk about.

Read More………..

Appointments and Who’s the Ref

Members are reminded to

  • Ensure you enter your availability onto Who’s the Ref (WTR)
  • Please accept or decline fixtures ASAP.  Clubs will not be able to see your appointment to confirm until you have accepted the fixture
  • Please remember to fill in the score ASAP after the game has taken place.
  • If the game is Cancelled, Postponed or Abandoned Please email Alan Thompson with details

Law implementation changes from January 3rd 2017

From January 3rd 2017 there is a significant step in the interpretation of the law and the sanctions that are being applied for reckless and dangerous tackles particularly to the head and neck area
In a change to law, World Rugby has redefined illegal (high) tackle categories and increased sanctions to deter high tackles via a law application guideline. This will apply at all levels of the game from 3 January 2017 introducing minimum on-field sanctions for reckless and accidental contact with the head, effectively lowering the acceptable height of the tackle.The guideline will be supported with a global education programme.

From 3 January, two new categories of dangerous tackles will carry penalty offences to deter and eradicate high tackles:

See official RFU communication including example videos

Reckless tackle

A player is deemed to have made reckless contact during a tackle or attempted tackle or during other phases of the game if in making contact, the player knew or should have known that there was a risk of making contact with the head of an opponent, but did so anyway. This sanction applies even if the tackle starts below the line of the shoulders. This type of contact also applies to grabbing and rolling or twisting around the head/neck area even if the contact starts below the line of the shoulders. Minimum sanction: Yellow card
Maximum sanction: Red card

Accidental tackle

When making contact with another player during a tackle or attempted tackle or during other phases of the game, if a player makes accidental contact with an opponent’s head, either directly or where the contact starts below the line of the shoulders, the player may still be sanctioned. This includes situations where the ball-carrier slips into the tackle.

Minimum sanction: Penalty


January 2017 Training Meeting

The Society Training meeting will be held on the Friday 20th June 2017

We will be covering the CMOD tackle module in our January meeting at Durham City.

Details have been sent regarding booking

All referees should really make an effort to ensure they attend CMOD events

John Heselwood


Referee Society Training meeting

This month as is the norm we are going to be running our usual training session on the 3rd Friday in November (18th) when the theme/subject matter will be the scrum. What will be slightly different is that the content of the module and material we will be presenting has been produced by the RFU. This has a number of advantages for us all, not least being the opportunity to build a a personal store of recognised training.

In order that attendance can be confirmed you need to register your intention to attend.


Society referees should have received a special login link.  Anyone else that wishes to attend will need to go through the RFU course registration process

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