According to a new study, doing away with scrum reset and eliminating “upright face-to-face” tackles would significantly reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission.
Rugby across the globe could be set for a major reshuffle if the suggestions from the new study are adopted.
The body is set to meet in the next 48 hours and is expected to announce a temporary set of rules which would also outlaw spitting on the pitch. The rules could see a temporary ban on reset scrum.
Rugby, like many other events in the world, has been on a standstill owing to the Corona Virus Pandemic.
The report also suggests making a change of jerseys and headgear at half-time compulsory. It further bans team huddles on the pitch. Players will be required to wash their hands and face with soap for 20 seconds and frequently changing balls during matches.
Eliminating scrum resets would be the change to be welcomed by many as it cuts down on time wasted.
According to the study, eliminating reset scrums would lead to a 30% reduction in “high-transmission risk exposure time”, having identified second-rows and props as the playing positions most at risk.
The figures in the report suggest that scrums posed the highest risk. They were found to make up 50% of the high-exposure time during the match. Consequently, props and second rows would be exposed most with the report saying they spend an average of 13.4 minutes in -high-transmission risk situations, and scrum reset accounting for 3.6 minutes. The award/penalty for scrum reset is understood to be a free-kick.
World Rugby’s long battle with upright tackles seems to have been justified by the Corona pandemic having already identified them as a key contributor to head injuries. The new study states that removing upright tackles from the game would “decrease the frequency of high-risk exposure events by 20%”.
World Rugby insists all these suggestions are valid for the pandemic era and will reserve the right to cut back.
Uganda’s rugby calendar is still on hold owing to government directives in partnership with World Health Organization.
At the point of rugby suspension in Uganda, Hima Cement Heathens were on top of the Nile Stout Premiership after 13 games with 63 points, 5 ahead of nemeses Betway Kobs.
2018 Runners-up, Rhinos, found themselves at the undesired end of the table languishing at the bottom with only 6 points, the only team not in double figures as regards points.