A letter from Michael Priestley, Chairman, Rugby Football Referees Union Constituent Body

GAME VALUES - ZERO TOLERANCE APPROACH TO PLAYER APPEALING / QUESTIONING DECISIONS / GENERAL BACKCHAT

At Premiership and Championship level, a concerted effort has been made over the last 2 years to enforce Game Values and the Rugby Core Values (Teamwork, Respect, Enjoyment, Discipline and Sportsmanship). Core Values that should translate in to Game Values and are what we hold as setting our game apart from others.

Unfortunately, at levels below the elite end of the game, a dramatic increase has been seen in players appealing (throwing arms in the air to seek a decision / generally backchatting or challenging and questioning a Match Official when a decision has been made. It is now time to enforce a ZERO TOLERANCE approach to this activity and we ask that you ensure that this important message is relayed to all of your Match Officials. These principles should be applied with immediate effect. The approach to stop this type of behaviour will also include the Coaching Pillar.

Please see the link below to clips from a National League game (refereed by a Match Official with Premiership experience) to underpin the approach that we wish to be taken at all levels of the game.

Please copy and paste the link in to your browser for the clips

https://we.tl/t-XLV21MOm2B

Clip 1, is of particular interest as you can see a player ‘waiving arms’ on 2 occasions during the first couple of minutes of the match. 

I would encourage you to listen to the Referee communication in all 3 clips

Please direct your Match Officials to engage Captains (and where possible Coaches) before a game as part of the pre match brief and make it completely clear that they should encourage players to avoid;

  • Waiving arms during live play – appealing
  • Calling for decisions ‘e.g. holding on’
  • Giving the referee backchat following a decision

PROCESS TO FOLLOW

The Referees process to be applied at all levels is simple;

1st occasion: a player will be spoken to, this could be during ‘Live Play’ as in Clip 1,

2nd occasion: the captain will be warned’,

3rd occasion: will see a team penalised.

If the incident is serious enough, the player may be penalized on the first occasion.

If this does not solve the matter then clearly sanctions can be escalated accordingly.

 

Should you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact either:

Michael Priestley - michaelpriestley@rfru.co.uk

Tim Miller - tim.miller@rfru.co.uk

 

Michael Priestley

news articles

  • 2020 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

    Fri 15 May 2020 12:42

    2020 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING   Current social distancing requirements will almost certainly mean that we can not hold our Annual General Meeting on the 8th July as planned.  This … view

  • THE 2022 LEGACY PROJECT

    Mon 11 May 2020 17:18

    The Steering Group for the 2022 Legacy Project are determined not to let the necessary restrictions currently in place jeopardise delivering it on schedule. The reality is that it has … view

  • A NEWSLETTER FROM BEAUTIFUL BURNTSTUMP

    Sat 09 May 2020 13:01

    Below is the link to the May 'In Touch' the official newsletter of Paviors RFC. Again Neil, Di and Simon have come up with a varied and informative edition even more welcome in these … view

  • APPOINTMENT TO THE BOARD

    Wed 06 May 2020 10:50

    CLUB SECRETARY   Not long into this now truncated season we suddenly found ourselves without a Club Secretary and we were indeed fortunate that Mark Britton stepped into the breach. … view

Facebook