It has just been announced that the laws of rugby union are going to be cut by 50% – apparently the idea is to make the game easier to understand –
It seems that the recent controversies on the Lions tour have prompted this move by World Rugby
World Rugby has set up a technical group to look at overhauling the laws of the game.
And it could well result in half the law book being shredded.
In an attempt to simplify the laws and make the game easier to understand, a World Rugby technical group will head up the ‘Laws Simplification Project’ which is set to be completed by late 2018.
I’m all in favour of removing some of the original laws that referees are just too zealous about these days.
This is one of my personal favourites –
Rule 58 -‘ No one wearing projecting nails, iron plates or gutta percha on any part of his boots or shoes shall be allowed to play in a match’
Allowing nails and hidden knives in boots would increase the fun for spectators immensely, not to mention the liberal use of ‘gutta percha’.
In case you’re wondering it is – a tough plastic substance from the latex of several Malaysian trees (genera Payena and Palaquium) of the sapodilla family that resembles rubber but contains more resin and is used especially as insulation and in dentistry in temporary fillings
And no – I have no idea why the RFU insisted that officials should check that this stuff was not being added by the front row to improve the amount of damage they could inflict with a good shoeing.
Rosa Klebb in ‘From Russia with Love’ demonstrated just how useful a hidden blade can be in dealing with a super spy. It would work equally as well with a flanker who is constantly offside I imagine.
I also fail to see why everyone thinks the laws are too complex – rule 20 from the original law book is so precise that even a Kent Society ref could understand it –
Frankly I think there is a danger of dumbing down the game with this ‘shredding’ of the laws – presumably the new rules will be added as an appendix to proper rugby books –