'Changing the game into a circus': Fictional NRL rule change to stop six-times farce

‘Changing the game into a circus’: Fictional NRL rule change to stop six-times farce

The NRL is reportedly considering a shock rule change that would extend the game beyond 80 minutes to prevent teams from abusing the late-game six rule.

The Daily Telegraph reported that the NRL will explore the option for teams to play their set of six even after playing time has expired.

This would mean that teams could play their set of six even after 80 minutes and potentially before half-time to avoid the negative tactics of defensive teams.

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The rule change would mean that a half or match ends after the last save of a set or if the attacking team relinquishes possession.

The potential law change is aimed at making defending teams intentionally give away set restarts to run out the clock in the dying stages of halves and games.

Most notably this season, Ben Hunt committed a professional foul in the Dragons’ clash with the Raiders by tackling dummyhalf when it was not the rule to cause the game to end despite not being penalised.

Also in Origin I, Queensland held Isaah Yeo in the final play of the match to secure a 16-10 win, knowing that a goal from six again or even a penalty goal would not be enough for the Blues to beat them.

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Ben Hunt was not penalized for awarding the penalty.Source: Supplied

The NRL Rules Committee will examine a potential rule change in the pre-2023 off-season.

However, Paul Kent gushed on NRL 360 that this is just another rule change that isn’t needed if the referees get it right.

“I hate it,” Kent said.

“That’s what happens so often in rugby league, someone makes a mistake like the umpire did last night, which we all recognized and the NRL recognized.

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Isaah Yeo was held at the last tackle of Origin I to allow time to run out.Source: Getty Images

“And instead of saying, mate, do it right next time, we come up with a rule that we try to use as a safety net against that, and we have no idea where the bubble in the carpet is going to pop next.”

“And it happens all the time. We saw it with the six-again rule. All of a sudden, teams worked out that it’s actually advantageous to give six-again.

“We’re going down this path where we’re just breaking the rules, where we don’t know where we’re going to end up, and we’re turning the sport into a circus.”

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Paul Crawley believes that rather than changing the structure of the rules, it is enough to get the referees to properly enforce the existing rules.

“Just kick the bloody penalty,” Crawley said.

“Seriously, if the referee in Ben Hunt’s situation takes the penalty and fouls Ben Hunt as he should, problem solved.

“But you can’t change the rules to get two extra games at the end of Origin when Isaah Yeo is tackled two meters from the line.

“You can’t extend the game for the Blues to win.

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