Rugby Union Scrums, A Travesty?

Neil ofthe nene

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Watching the Lions SA test. How have the authorities allowed such a bastardisation of the put in at the scrum?

Quite clearly the ball is being put in down the near channel, not fed straight for the hookers to compete over. Might as well not bother and just start with a free kick.
 

Arry

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Watching the Lions SA test. How have the authorities allowed such a bastardisation of the put in at the scrum?

Quite clearly the ball is being put in down the near channel, not fed straight for the hookers to compete over. Might as well not bother and just start with a free kick.
Same farce as the offside rule for footy
 

Godber

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Watching the Lions SA test. How have the authorities allowed such a bastardisation of the put in at the scrum?

Quite clearly the ball is being put in down the near channel, not fed straight for the hookers to compete over. Might as well not bother and just start with a free kick.
Yet go a couple of inches out at the line outs and the ref blows up.
 

Scribe

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Hi Neil I have my own theory on this, the objective of scrums has changed from using it as a platform to launch an attack from, to an opportunity to win a penalty, which unfortunately has lead to more scrums collapsing. Due to the strength / weight ratio increasing massively from the amateur days, Hookers have become a third prop as both feet stay on the ground adding weight / strength to the drive,

I believe that the IRB recognising this have all but dropped the law that requires that the ball is fed down the middle of the scrum in order that both hookers can compete for the ball, on the grounds of player safety.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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Hi Neil I have my own theory on this, the objective of scrums has changed from using it as a platform to launch an attack from, to an opportunity to win a penalty, which unfortunately has lead to more scrums collapsing. Due to the strength / weight ratio increasing massively from the amateur days, Hookers have become a third prop as both feet stay on the ground adding weight / strength to the drive,

I believe that the IRB recognising this have all but dropped the law that requires that the ball is fed down the middle of the scrum in order that both hookers can compete for the ball, on the grounds of player safety.
Strangely I have come to the same conclusion overnight. The scrum is no longer a fight for posession with the odds in the favour of the side putting the ball in. Would it not therefore be sensible to downgrade offences at the scrum so that the outcome is a free kick rather than penalty? That way the incentive to try and gain a penalty that could produce three easy points or an attacking lineout is removed.

Would this lead to a better game with the ball having to be played in hand more after a scrum rather than a lineout or attempt at three points?
 

Scribe

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There is a downside to downgrading scrum offences to a free kick, where an attacking side has a 5 Metre scrum and is driving for the line for a pushover try, the defending side only need to infringe to give away a free kick, which is easier to defend than a penalty, which the attacking side can elect to take a scrum again. Referees do have the power to call a penalty try for consistent infrigement close to the line, that had the offence not occurred would have most likely ended in a try, however in practice it takes a fair amount of offences, before referees take that option.

I do fear that the days where teams took pride in their scrummaging prowess have gone for good Australia & New Zealand have made no secret that they would prefer that scrums were un-contested and sadly I think that may well be the way things will go. :(
 

satinet

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The problem with uncontested scrums is you would suddenly have at least 3 players who were a lot more mobile and athletic on the pitch, which would reduce scoring. Hence why League has 13 players, I guess.
 

Scribe

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The problem with uncontested scrums is you would suddenly have at least 3 players who were a lot more mobile and athletic on the pitch, which would reduce scoring. Hence why League has 13 players, I guess.
There is no simple solution to the problem if you raised the penalty amount scored from a scrum infrigement from 3 to 5, then the focus becomes on making the opposite side concede a penalty, so the problems go on. Many year's ago my brother reckoned that the two rugby codes League & Union would re-unite and I have to wonder if he was right.
 

BBear

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I have no problem with crooked feeds into the scrum. Happy for the team with the put in to retain possession.

Rugby Union will never change to uncontested scrums imo.
 

davylad

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I'm not too sure what they should do, but it's a very important part of Union. Couldn't they stop the clock, as there's a lot of time wasted. The two codes have grown further and further apart in recent years, League is very simple, but to say Union is technical is an under statement. Just thinking about years gone by, the lad was a hooker in league, and was a tremendous ball winner, whether with the head or against it. Then the authorities changed the laws of the game, he along with some other 9's, were given 8 game bans a few years ago, for supposedly "feet up" in other words they weren't allowed to use their ball winning skills. That's when we started to see half backs going in the scrums, something most of them wouldn't have dreamed of doing, knowing they were going to cop one or two. It was maybe for the better as it's a fantastic sport for most people nowadays, I still have some reservations myself.
 
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Scribe

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@davylad agree with you about it being a very important part of Union, I spent most of playing days in the pack, three years propping and can say that back then it was a physical contest based on upper body strength & technique, I have had great games, games and some bad ones, but can say hand on heart there was never any intention of dropping a scrum, but they happen, especially where a much stronger front 5 are dominant.

Well that was the past, I can't see how scrums can be seen as a contest area, when the ball is fed at an angle between the prop and flanker but it is legal following a law amendment in the 2017-18 season here
 
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