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Fans bemused as France make use of 'attacking' new rule for defensive purpsoes

BY Jack Tunney  ·  Wednesday Jul 10, 2024

A new law introduced by World Rugby to help speed up the game has come under fire this week after France found a quick loophole in their recent U20s World Championship match against Wales.

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The new law is being trialled by the sports governing body alongside several other laws in this year’s U20s World Championship as they look to improve and progress the spectacle of rugby.

Over the years, law changes have helped improve the game greatly to ensure faster and more exciting play, attracting more fans and players to the sport, but sometimes the new laws simply don’t work – this could well be one of them.

The change introduced is that players can now call a ‘mark’ straight from the kick-off, which is designed to stop teams kicking deep into the opposition half, and instead offer a better challenge under the high ball.

France decided to work their way around this new rule when they called the mark just inside their own 22. They elected to do this to allow the Welsh players to tackle them inside their own 22 following a tap and go in which they stayed still, allowing them to kick the ball straight out from the ruck.

Fans were left bemused and quite simply frustrated by the manipulation of the new rule, adding that it instead slowed the game down, calling for the new law to be scrapped immediately.

“Well this is pathetic” one fan complained. “Can’t imagine any self respecting forward wouldn’t want to run it straight in that situation. Massive amount of space in front of him. Ridiculous tactics and over coaching.”

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“A mark from a kickoff is a jarring rule, honestly I don’t get why it was implemented”, another fan added.

In this episode of Walk the Talk, Jim Hamilton chats with double World Cup winner Damian de Allende about all things Springbok rugby, including RWC2023 and the upcoming Ireland series. Watch now for free on RugbyPass TV

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