England had to fight extremely hard to come through as victors in yesterday’s Six Nations clash with Wales. Their Severn Bridge neighbours had the scoreline in their favour for much of the match, with England only regaining the advantage in the dying minutes.
England made life extremely hard for themselves after conceding one early try and receiving not one, but two yellow cards in quick concession. Even when they returned fire with a trademark Ben Earl finish, George Ford failed to add the extras after his run up was interrupted by charging Welsh players.
The men in white finally came through good with George Ford knocking over the winning penalty to take a 16-14 victory.
Speaking to a crowd of journalists after the match, all of which wanted to ask the same question, Ford spoke very honestly about the conversion incident.
“It doesn’t make sense to me that, I’m trying to use the full shot-clock time as we’ve got men in the bin, you’re at the back of your stance, have your routine, and if adjusting your feet like that is initiating your run-up then… I’m not too sure to be honest.
“Some of us kickers are going to have to stand like statues at the back of our run-up now. A lot of things with kickers are, you want to get a feel, and sometimes you don’t quite feel right at the back of your run-up, so you adjust it a bit and think ‘right I’ve got it now’.
“You want your chest to be at the ball and all of those things. What it means for us kickers is that we’ve got to be ultra diligent with our setup and process, as if they’re going to go down that route and look for stuff like that, we can’t afford that.”
World Rugby Chief Communications Officer, Dominic Rumbles has countered those questioning the referee’s decision with the official rule book, stating:
‘All players retire to their goal line and do not overstep that line until the kicker moves in any direction to begin their approach to kick. When the kicker does this, they may charge or jump to prevent a goal but must not be physically supported by other players in these actions.‘