Why rugby is handicapped by its own rules

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Dan Carter before suffering a torn adductor longus tendon (AFP Photo / WILLIAM WEST)

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An out-of-pocket punter comes up with a fundamental reason why the game they play in heaven doesn’t get more free-to-air coverage.

Question: “Why was that a penalty?”

Answer: “Well, you see, when you get tackled, you must release the ball. That guy didn’t release the ball.”

“Oh. Okay.”

Score: 3-0.

Q: “Why was that one a penalty?”

A: “Well, you see, when the tackler has brought the ball carrier to the ground, he’s supposed to let go of him. But he didn’t let go of him in time.”

“Ahhh…”

Score: 3-3.

Q: “Well, why was that just a penalty?”

A: “Because, you see, in that scenario, both sets of players committed simultaneous infringements at the same breakdown.”

Game over. Final score: 6-3.

Q: “So if they’re all doing something wrong at the same time, then why’d the penalty go to team A instead of team B?”

A: “I don’t know.”

Echoing somewhere up in the commentary box, “From a technical perspective, you could say the visitors were very unlucky tonight. Some of those calls really could have gone either way…”

Discuss…

What a year 2014 has been in rugby! From the highs of the Waratahs winning the Super Rugby title, to the lows of the infamous saga that swamped our national team. What are your reflections on the year that was? What's on your Christmas wishlist for next year? If you're feeling inspired, you can share it with other Roarers by submitting an article.
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