World Rugby believes that everyone with an interest in the game deserves an opportunity to have their opinions heard.
Following on from a highly successful Rugby World Cup and as they do every four years, the governing body have appointed a Law Review Group (LRG) to conduct a health check of rugby's laws to see if any changes should be made.
As part of that process, the LRG is looking at current trial protocols in place for the television match official (TMO) and the views of the rugby community are now being sought.
The guiding principles of the TMO protocol are:
– The TMO is a tool to help the on-field match officials. The referee is responsible for managing the TMO process and remains as primary decision-maker
– Any relevant information taken into consideration must be CLEAR and OBVIOUS and must have an material effect
– The application of the TMO system must be credible and consistent, protecting the integrity of the game.
The current trial protocol can be viewed in full HERE.
By means of background please find some statistics from Rugby World Cup 2015 below:
– There were 132 TMO referrals during RWC 2015, 77 of which were try referrals and 55 were for suspected foul play, with the most common being dangerous charging
– This represented a small increase in the usage of the TMO when compared to the Six Nations Championship 2015 and The Rugby Championship 2015
– The most in any match was seven (Argentina v Namibia), while there were six matches with no TMO referrals
– The average time taken per referral was 70 seconds with the knockout stage being 13 seconds quicker than the pool stage.