Jump to content

Laws question - scrum when tackled on the last


Recommended Posts

I started playing and watching Rugby League in 1984 and so for the vast majority of the time I have seen a handover when a player is tackled on the last tackle.

I was aware that before this there was a scrum when a player was tackled on the last.

But I have just been enjoying this video of the 3rd Ashes test in 1982 (679) 1982 Kangaroo Tour..3rd Test..GB v Australia.. - YouTube

On the 42nd minute, Lee Crooks was tacked on the last and when the scrum was formed the feed was given to Great Britain.  This surprised me as I thought that the defending team would get the feed when a player was tackled on the last.

I have had a dig around and I can't find a reference to if this was always the case so for our (shall I say) mature colleagues on this site can I ask; for the limited tackle era was the feed always given to the team in possession when tackled on the last? And if so, was it used as a method to retain possession when a team had a superior pack/hooker.  I did hear about a Cup final where Alex Murphy would kick for touch or stand offside as he had a better hooker and so kept possession but I have not heard of a team just playing out six tackles over and over. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites


16 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

I started playing and watching Rugby League in 1984 and so for the vast majority of the time I have seen a handover when a player is tackled on the last tackle.

I was aware that before this there was a scrum when a player was tackled on the last.

But I have just been enjoying this video of the 3rd Ashes test in 1982 (679) 1982 Kangaroo Tour..3rd Test..GB v Australia.. - YouTube

On the 42nd minute, Lee Crooks was tacked on the last and when the scrum was formed the feed was given to Great Britain.  This surprised me as I thought that the defending team would get the feed when a player was tackled on the last.

I have had a dig around and I can't find a reference to if this was always the case so for our (shall I say) mature colleagues on this site can I ask; for the limited tackle era was the feed always given to the team in possession when tackled on the last? And if so, was it used as a method to retain possession when a team had a superior pack/hooker.  I did hear about a Cup final where Alex Murphy would kick for touch or stand offside as he had a better hooker and so kept possession but I have not heard of a team just playing out six tackles over and over. 

I’m not certain on this but didn’t we for a time award the feed to the team based on territory I.e. if you were in the opponent’s hair you got head & feed. It may have only been for a season

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, LeeF said:

I’m not certain on this but didn’t we for a time award the feed to the team based on territory I.e. if you were in the opponent’s hair you got head & feed. It may have only been for a season

Thanks.  That's interesting as Great Britain were in their own half when tackled on the last.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, Dunbar said:

Thanks.  That's interesting as Great Britain were in their own half when tackled on the last.

We definitely messed around with the awarding of the head & feed before going to the handover. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, LeeF said:

We definitely messed around with the awarding of the head & feed before going to the handover. 

Just seems bizarre to me now that a team would be the given the advantage at the scrum when caught on the last... particularly as we went straight from that to a hand over to the defending team.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

Just seems bizarre to me now that a team would be the given the advantage at the scrum when caught on the last... particularly as we went straight from that to a hand over to the defending team.

Very but that’s RL 

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is before my time, but I just watched the footage and not one player objected, so it must have been a rule at the time.  Or could it be that the second Aussie player in the tackle was offside and instead of awarding a penalty, he awarded a scrum instead?  I know he does not give any signal to suggest offside but I am just trying to find an explanation.  Also, I believe referees did have a lot more freedom to use their discretion back in the day.

This link takes you directly to the exact moment btw:  https://youtu.be/G6aPX_N6QTw?t=2518

 

  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

In 1982/83 if you were tackled on the last it was a scrum. If you were in your own half you got the feed, if you were over halfway the opposition fed the scrum. That was my recollection although I was only in short trousers at the time.

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can't remember the exact rules, but I'm sure there used were occasions when one team got the head and the other team the feed, the 6th tackle may have been one of those occasions - looks like Australia had the head at that scrum but would need to put it on a bigger screen to be sure. As mentioned above, these rules changed quite a bit in the run up to the 6th tackle handover

Edited by Cumbrian Fanatic
  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

100% League 0% Union

Just because I don't know doesn't mean I don't understand

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, Cumbrian Fanatic said:

I can't remember the exact rules, but I'm sure there used were occasions when one team got the head and the other team the feed, the 6th tackle may have been one of those occasions - looks like Australia had the head at that scrum but would need to put it on a bigger screen to be sure. As mentioned above, these rules changed quite a bit in the run up to the 6th tackle handover

I think you are right. And a knock on or forward pass gave the opposition both the head and feed at the scrum. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Scubby said:

I think you are right. And a knock on or forward pass gave the opposition both the head and feed at the scrum. 

That sounds about right. I was still playing age group rugby in 1982 and I just remember that the rules around the head and feed seemed to change every season. Scrums were  a lottery that possession did change hands, though a really good hooker could win a lot of ball

100% League 0% Union

Just because I don't know doesn't mean I don't understand

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Cumbrian Fanatic said:

I can't remember the exact rules, but I'm sure there used were occasions when one team got the head and the other team the feed, the 6th tackle may have been one of those occasions - looks like Australia had the head at that scrum but would need to put it on a bigger screen to be sure. As mentioned above, these rules changed quite a bit in the run up to the 6th tackle handover

Splitting the loose head and feed meant that if everyone was where he ought to be (big if), the half was trying to pick out the furthest hooker. This was the only time the contested RL scrum had any chance of remaining stable. Both front rows had more of an interest in binding and facing their opponents` goal-line.

Once the head and feed are combined, it guarantees the front rows will stand at an angle and make little attempt to bind. Even on the occasions when the open side props do bind, all the pressure from within is towards the touchline, which inevitably breaks the binding. And in the disintegration we finish up with one hooker sat on the other.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Cumbrian Fanatic said:

looks like Australia had the head at that scrum

 There`s an interesting little interplay between the ref and Australian hooker Max Krillich at the scrum as well. 

The ball shoots out the Austrailians` way and the ref pulls up the play steps over and then peers into the tunnel, he then seems to make a `premature striking` or `feet across the tunnel` ruling against Krilich who is retreating from the scrum and raises his hand and nods his head to the ref in acknowledgement. Given Australia had the head and Krililch pretty well first strike at the ball you would really expect them to have won that scrum. Why did the referee feel it necessary to check it?

Krilich`s acknowledgement could be taken to mean a couple of things, firstly `Guilty as charged Sir !` or a clever Captain who knows how arbitrary these penalties are and knowing that this is an away Test, all the advantages are going to go to the home side and there is no point in antagonizing the ref further. 

The commentators make the remark that Krilich has found it necessary to do this because he was losing the scrums so badly, 5 - 1, I believe they say. Couple of things:

1) The referees delayed reaction in checking in the scrum for the reason the ball came out the Australians way and then making the decision that an Australian had his leg up, it is hard to believe that the offending player could not have retracted that leg by the time the referee got over to look:

2) With Australia having the feed, Krilich really had first dibs at the ball, why would he then find it necessary to block the ball`s pass across the tunnel, surely all the advantage was with him, was his vision being blocked by the Pommie prop, hence he could only strike once the ball came into sight, is this what they call `the lost art of scrummaging`. maybe any old ex forwards on here could tell me was that the case in scrums, even without the head could a good prop block the view of the opposing hooker to negate some of that disadvantage of not having the head.

At the end of the day the whole reveals that like a lot of things in life, theoretically the scrum was a great idea with its` permutations of head and feed and advantage and so forth under the different circumstances that the scrum came to be set, but in reality they were a bit of a mess with rulings being at the whim of the referee. Hate to see them completely disappear though.

p.s. I don`t trust the commentators as well when they back the referee up by saying `He (Krilich) has been doing it all day`. No surprises there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, The Rocket said:

 There`s an interesting little interplay between the ref and Australian hooker Max Krillich at the scrum as well. 

The ball shoots out the Austrailians` way and the ref pulls up the play steps over and then peers into the tunnel, he then seems to make a `premature striking` or `feet across the tunnel` ruling against Krilich who is retreating from the scrum and raises his hand and nods his head to the ref in acknowledgement. Given Australia had the head and Krililch pretty well first strike at the ball you would really expect them to have won that scrum. Why did the referee feel it necessary to check it?

Krilich`s acknowledgement could be taken to mean a couple of things, firstly `Guilty as charged Sir !` or a clever Captain who knows how arbitrary these penalties are and knowing that this is an away Test, all the advantages are going to go to the home side and there is no point in antagonizing the ref further. 

The commentators make the remark that Krilich has found it necessary to do this because he was losing the scrums so badly, 5 - 1, I believe they say. Couple of things:

1) The referees delayed reaction in checking in the scrum for the reason the ball came out the Australians way and then making the decision that an Australian had his leg up, it is hard to believe that the offending player could not have retracted that leg by the time the referee got over to look:

2) With Australia having the feed, Krilich really had first dibs at the ball, why would he then find it necessary to block the ball`s pass across the tunnel, surely all the advantage was with him, was his vision being blocked by the Pommie prop, hence he could only strike once the ball came into sight, is this what they call `the lost art of scrummaging`. maybe any old ex forwards on here could tell me was that the case in scrums, even without the head could a good prop block the view of the opposing hooker to negate some of that disadvantage of not having the head.

At the end of the day the whole reveals that like a lot of things in life, theoretically the scrum was a great idea with its` permutations of head and feed and advantage and so forth under the different circumstances that the scrum came to be set, but in reality they were a bit of a mess with rulings being at the whim of the referee. Hate to see them completely disappear though.

p.s. I don`t trust the commentators as well when they back the referee up by saying `He (Krilich) has been doing it all day`. No surprises there.

The tunnel was supposed to be clear before the ball was put in with both hookers having their feet on the ground, and if I remember correctly, the ball was supposed to have passed the open side props feet before it was hooked. Invariably both hookers had a foot up and were trying to get an advantage, another trick was for hookers to bind with a 'loose arm' where they would slip the binding an d sit lower in the scrum to get a better view. Sometimes it was near impossible to get the ball in the scrum and it would come flying out all over the place.. 

Having the head was not always the advantage you would think, there were a couple of tricks to counteract it, one was for the scrum half to try and recover the ball so it walked to the scrum from the opposition side so his hooker seen the feet of the scrum half approaching and knew the ball was coming in. A second was for the hooker to 'tap' - he'd raise a finger on his open side hand, in this case it would be his left hand, when he 'tapped' it down he'd strike at the same time - this was a signal for the scrum half to put the ball in.

If a hooker was struggling for ball he had to try everything going but sometimes the penalties were a bit like rugby union, the ref just had to give something to get the game going. Playing as the game moved to non competitive scrums, I find them much better and would definitely not go back to how it was.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

100% League 0% Union

Just because I don't know doesn't mean I don't understand

Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 minutes ago, Griff said:

"Attacking team's head, defending team's ball" was, iirc, the mantra.

I think you could be correct, there was certainly a period were it was head for one team and feed for another, then it went to head and feed to the non offending team. I think they also messed around with which side of the scrum you put the ball in.

100% League 0% Union

Just because I don't know doesn't mean I don't understand

Link to comment
Share on other sites

28 minutes ago, Cumbrian Fanatic said:

The tunnel was supposed to be clear before the ball was put in with both hookers having their feet on the ground, and if I remember correctly, the ball was supposed to have passed the open side props feet before it was hooked. Invariably both hookers had a foot up and were trying to get an advantage, another trick was for hookers to bind with a 'loose arm' where they would slip the binding an d sit lower in the scrum to get a better view. Sometimes it was near impossible to get the ball in the scrum and it would come flying out all over the place.. 

Having the head was not always the advantage you would think, there were a couple of tricks to counteract it, one was for the scrum half to try and recover the ball so it walked to the scrum from the opposition side so his hooker seen the feet of the scrum half approaching and knew the ball was coming in. A second was for the hooker to 'tap' - he'd raise a finger on his open side hand, in this case it would be his left hand, when he 'tapped' it down he'd strike at the same time - this was a signal for the scrum half to put the ball in.

If a hooker was struggling for ball he had to try everything going but sometimes the penalties were a bit like rugby union, the ref just had to give something to get the game going. Playing as the game moved to non competitive scrums, I find them much better and would definitely not go back to how it was.

Great read, really enjoyed that, on viewing it for about the 10th time it became obvious that Krilich appeared to have both legs well across the tunnel and clearly visible to all  and sundry, makes me wonder how he ever thought he would get away with it. Funny how the ref still felt it necessary to march over and peer into the tunnel though, blind Freddy could have seen Krilich`s legs across the tunnel  from where he was initially standing, shows that refs haven`t changed though, they were officious little buggers putting on a show even in those days.

I find it interesting and we used to see it in some of our old referees from the 70`s, Greg Hartley being the classical example, they were like a mime artist explaining everything they do to the crowd with their body actions. In this case, firstly I am halting the play and now I am checking inside the scrum and now I m awarding the appropriate penalty.....priceless.

Brings back a lot of memories when you talk about hookers `slip the binding and sit lower in the scrum`, who can forget those side angle camera shots with both hookers faces peering out of the scrum each trying to get below the other.

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just an addition. Later in the game Andy Gregory kicks towards touch in general play and the Aussie winger (John Ribot) gets two hands to it but fails to catch the ball and it goes into touch. 

The scrum is formed and Australia get the feed.

It all seems weird watching it now... why would the team that put the ball into touch get the feed.

Edited by Dunbar
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Cumbrian Fanatic said:

I think you could be correct, there was certainly a period were it was head for one team and feed for another, then it went to head and feed to the non offending team. I think they also messed around with which side of the scrum you put the ball in.

They certainly did.  Changed from open side to blind side.

But that came much later.

Edited by Griff
  • Thanks 1

"We'll sell you a seat .... but you'll only need the edge of it!"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Cumbrian Fanatic said:

I think they also messed around with which side of the scrum you put the ball in.

To be fair, we have also messed around with which side of the scrum we put the ball in now.

We put it in the back.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, The Rocket said:

At the end of the day the whole reveals that like a lot of things in life, theoretically the scrum was a great idea with its` permutations of head and feed and advantage and so forth under the different circumstances that the scrum came to be set, but in reality they were a bit of a mess with rulings being at the whim of the referee. Hate to see them completely disappear though.

p.s. I don`t trust the commentators as well when they back the referee up by saying `He (Krilich) has been doing it all day`. No surprises there.

From what I gleaned at the time, the best explanation is that people so liked the idea of the scrum as an unpredictable contest for possession that they were willing to engage in a sustained act of blind faith that they made sense. The sort that`s still required at many and various points of an RU game.

Commentators were keener than most to disbelieve the evidence before their eyes. If it were a former RU player, it was second nature.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 hours ago, The Rocket said:

I find it interesting and we used to see it in some of our old referees from the 70`s, Greg Hartley being the classical example, they were like a mime artist explaining everything they do to the crowd with their body actions. In this case, firstly I am halting the play and now I am checking inside the scrum and now I m awarding the appropriate penalty.....priceless.

Don`t know if you`ve ever seen the opening sequence of the UK TV music show "The Old Grey Whistle Test". It features the outline of a figure performing exaggerated gestures, one of which is a repeated huge uppercut. 

I was always reminded of this when some of our referees signalled that a punch had been thrown. They would step right away from the players, into splendid isolation, to make sure we felt the full benefits of the display.

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 10/01/2021 at 07:34, langpark said:

This is before my time, but I just watched the footage and not one player objected, so it must have been a rule at the time.  Or could it be that the second Aussie player in the tackle was offside and instead of awarding a penalty, he awarded a scrum instead?  I know he does not give any signal to suggest offside but I am just trying to find an explanation.  Also, I believe referees did have a lot more freedom to use their discretion back in the day.

This link takes you directly to the exact moment btw:  https://youtu.be/G6aPX_N6QTw?t=2518

 

That feed was dire!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

During lockdown the NRL website put up every NSW Grand Final and State of Origin match going right back to 1966, so I amused myself watching those. I also kept a word document open making notes of rule changes as and when I spotted them. Before 1983 it seemed that scrums worked on the principle that put-in was awarded to the team in their own half, and loose head to non-infringing team. In those days I when a straight put-in was reasonably enforced the loose head must have been deemed the real advantage.

The one that really blew my mind, though. After a kick to touch the loose head was awarded to the kicking team. In the 1971 Grand Final it was absolutely St George's tactic that when they were on the last tackle about 10 metres from the opposition line they just kicked the ball sideways into touch and took their chances with the scrum.

1983 appeared to be the year they made some major changes. Head and feed both went to infringing team, the non-kicking team were awarded head and feed after a kick to touch, and the handover was introduced (although only in the instance of a player caught in possession on the last).

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...