SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 04: Referee Ashley Klein gives a penalty during the round 20 NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Parramatta Eels at WIN Jubilee Stadium on August 04, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

The NRL are reportedly set to make one rule change for 2022 regarding use of six again in general play.

The six again rule was first brought in during the lockdown of 2020 in an attempt to speed up the game, allowing teams to receive a six again for ruck infringements rather than a penalty.

It meant teams were forced to find other ways of preventing teams from scoring on their own line, with the cumulative fatigue on defensive lines weighing heavily.

The six again rule was then expanded ahead of the 2021 season to allow offsides to be added to the six again, with teams regularly using it as a preventative measure in the second half of 2020.

The NRL were criticised for their decision to expand the rule, with offending teams giving away infringements in their own end receiving no real penalty early in the tackle count.

The Daily Telegraph are now reporting however that the NRL will change the rule to see teams awarded with a penalty for offside and ruck infringement offences in their own half, rather than the six again.

Once an attacking team crosses halfway, then the rules of 2021 - seeing a six again for all ruck infringements and offsides - would apply.

While it's understood the game don't want to make more rule changes, they believe this is a major flaw in the rules - and most coaches, players and fans would agree.

Teams gaining no advantage for an offence in their own half last year was widely panned by fans, and a blight for coaches.

It's anticipated the NRL will make an official announcement regarding rule changes in the coming weeks, before the commencement of pre-season fixtures in mid-February.

1 COMMENT

  1. Wouldn’t it be nice if the NRL were to issue a statement explaining what rule change they intend to make, what they hope to achieve, and how they will judge (at the end of the season) whether or not the change was successful?

    Then they could ask for comments, and see what coaches, players, referees and fans really think.

    And only then to decide on whether to make the rule change or not.

    Speaking philosophically, every rule change brings:
    – expected positive outcomes
    – unexpected positive outcomes
    – expected negative outcomes
    – unexpected negative outcomes

    Where the positives outweigh the negatives, the rule change is a GOOD thing. Where the negatives outweigh the positives, the rule change is a BAD thing.

    That’s why it would instructive for the NRL to explain explicitly what they hope to achieve – so people can (we hope) identify the unexpected negatives BEFORE we have to suffer them for a full season.

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