View Full Version : Rugby Officiating

1st Apr 2014, 23:30
I was cruising the net looking for gratuitous violence, and came across this clip. The fight itself is hardly worth mentioning; I much prefer hockey fights, but that's not the point. About 1:23, there is some discussion between various officials and players. The bearded official on the field chats with some players, then goes to talk to a balding official on the sidelines. It almost seems like Beard is negotiating with Baldy on the players behalf. Most other sports, the official on the field who is in direct contact with the players is the one in charge. Is rugby a bit different?

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1st Apr 2014, 23:48
The referee (Beardy bloke) is in charge. However if you watch the clip he is out of shot until about 1 minute 20 in. He will be positioned further infield.

He does this to get an overall picture of what is going on, Referees tend not to get up close with the moving action so as not to get in the way, (they don't sit on top of the players), but also to get a good overall view of the action.

When the fight started near the touchline, the referee would have been unsighted as to how it started.

The touch judge (baldy), (2 per match; also qualified referees, often called assistant referees) was much closer to the start of the fight.

The referre often refers to the touch judge(s) to find out what exactly happens, and does take advice as to what the course of action should be. Using this information he then makes his decision.

He talks to the players in order to calm them down, often approaching the captain to tell him to get control of his players.

In this instance you could think of the touch judge as being a quallified witness

Straighten Up
2nd Apr 2014, 01:18
You see much less backchat in rugby towards the officials as it results in overturned penalties, additional 10m loss of territory or a sin binning. Usually in rugby only the captain can talk to the referee and the referee will call the captain over whenever he wants to bo🔣🔣ock one of his players.

2nd Apr 2014, 01:24
Yep, that's one advantage of American football over the global type: the refs are in charge, not the prima donna players.