All Square

Much was made of the fact that the Lions v All Blacks tour ended in a drawn series, with neither side or their supporters knowing quite what to do when the final whistle went at Eden Park.

Obviously it will be different on Saturday in the Super Rugby last four play-offs – this is knockout rugby.

Determining Winners of Super Rugby Finals Series Matches
– if the teams are tied at fulltime in any Finals Series Match
then the following will apply until a winner is found:

  1. a) Extra Time – the procedure will be:

(i) After a five minute rest period, the extra time is played
in two 10 minute periods with a two minute halftime;
(ii)Before the extra time begins, the match Referee will do
a coin toss with the two captains one minute before the new
kick-off. The winner of the coin toss decides if his team wants
to kick-off or if his team wants to choose the side of the pitch
it wants to play on for the first 10 minute period;
(iii) For the second 10 minute period, the teams change sides
and the team that did not kick off in the first period does
(iv) Coaches are not permitted on the field during the rest
period or halftime.
(v) Teams and match officials must remain on the field during
the rest period and at halftime.
(vi) Injury time is added to the two 10 minute periods.

  1. b) Sudden Death – if the match is still tied at the end
    of extra time, the procedure will be:

(i) An up to 10 minute sudden death period is played after another
five minute rest period;
(ii) The first team to score (by a penalty, drop-goal or try)
will be the winner;
(iii) As for extra time, one minute before sudden death begins,
the match Referee will do a coin toss to choose which team kicks-off
and on which side of the pitch they will play.
(iv) Teams and match officials must remain on the field during
the rest period.
(v) Injury time is added to this period of play.


Kicking Competition – if the match is still tied at the
end of sudden death, the Referee will conduct a place kicking
competition to determine the winner of the match, according
to the following procedures:

(i) All Players and Match officials will remain on the Playing
Area. The Referee will call the captains of the two teams together
and will conduct a coin toss. The winner of the coin toss then
may either choose which Team kicks first (in which case the
loser chooses the end at which all place kicks will be taken)
or choose the end at which all place kicks will be taken (in
which case the loser chooses which Team kicks first).

(ii)Each Team must nominate five Players to take part in the
competition. Only Players on the Playing Area at the final whistle
of extra time may be nominated. No substituted Players, injury-replaced
Players or Players who have been shown a red card may take part
at any time. For clarification purposes, any Player who has
received a yellow card and who remains in the sin bin at the
time of the final whistle of extra time may not take part in
the place kick competition (including during ‘sudden death’).
The order in which the nominated Players will kick does
not have to be predetermined.


The Match Officials and the ten nominated Players (five from
each team) will assemble on the halfway line. Team management
and Players not nominated must remain behind the halfway line
in the side of the Playing Area not used. No one other than
the Match Officials, the Match Manager, two Ball persons and
the participating Players are allowed in the part of the Playing
Area being used for the competition (including around the Playing
Area, behind the posts, etc).


The five Players from each Team will place kick from three different
points, all on the 22 metre line, as follows:

First point:
Second point:
Third point:

(v) The Referee will start the competition by calling the first
Player selected from the Team kicking first to the first kicking
point. Once the Player has taken the place kick, the Referee
calls a Player from the opposing Team to take his place kick
from the same point.


The next two Players (one from each Team) will place kick from
the second point in turn. This will continue until all five
Players from each Team have place kicked (the next players place
kicking respectively from the third point, the first point and
finally the second point), or until one Team is unable to equal
the score of the other Team within the remaining number of kicks
(at which time the Referee will declare the winner).


If there are an equal number of successful kicks once each Team
has completed its five place kicks, the competition continues
on a ‘sudden death’ basis, following the same order of kickers
used in the first five kicks.

(viii) The competition will continue two kickers at a time (one
from each Team), going progressively through the three kicking
points as stated above (and repeating the process if necessary)
until one player succeeds with a place kick and the player from
the other Team taking the same place kick misses it. Once this
occurs, the Team of the player who succeeded with the place
kick will be declared the winner. Each of these additional kicks
shall be taken by the same 5 players in rotation.


Throughout the place kicking competition:

(a) Once a Player has positioned the ball on the kicking tee,
he must take the kick within one minute. Should he take longer,
the Referee shall declare the kick unsuccessful.

(b) After each kick, the Referee records the number of the Player
and whether or not the attempt was successful. The Sideline
Manager / Substitution Recorder will record the same details
on the official Match report.

(c) Whether or not the kick is successful in each case is the
sole decision of the Referee, who may at his sole discretion
rely on the assistance of his assistant Referees. The Referee’s
decision shall be final and binding.

(d) Once a Player has completed their place kick, they shall
return to stand with their Team behind the halfway line in the
side of the playing area not used.

The idea of progressing to a final based on a kicking contest seems rather unsatisfactory to me and you would hope that in the event of a tie at full and extra time ‘sudden death’ would sort out a winner.

In view of altitude and the kicking talents on both sides it is highly unlikely that there wouldn’t be a result in the game between the Lions and the Hurricanes. Hopefully the game in Christchurch won’t have to be decided with players who don’t normally take shots at goal deciding who goes forward.

I can only recall one major match where this sadly happened – in 2009 Leicester Tigers knocked out Cardiff in a Heineken Cup semi-final by 7-6 on penalties –

Even Richard Cockerill, who was the Tigers coach at the time thought it was a poor way to decide such an important match.

Hopefully it won’t come to this in either game tomorrow.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s