Replacements for red card offences?
Rugby fans, how do you feel if your team has a player sent from the field for what would a significant offence? Other than cursing the stupidity of the player in question, you know that your team is up against it for the remainder of the game.
Should such an incident occur early in a match, in most instances the team reduced to 14 men will struggle to win or even be competitive.
I certainly don’t condone unfair or foul play in any circumstances. However, an offence committed by one person should not have a detrimental effect on not only the team, but also the supporters at the ground and those watching on TV.
When I say detrimental effect, I’m looking at the significant imbalance that has now been placed on the game.
In my earlier response, I considered that a yellow card and a white card could be given. However, if the offence was of a nature that was deemed serious enough that a player should have no further part in the game, then a red card should be awarded.
However, after a period of 10 mins, that player may be replaced, but the player sent off will have no further part in that particular game.
This would provide a much fairer contest. It would be 15 against 15 (except for a 10 min period) but would still mean the offender being removed and facing a judicial process.
It would also require that team to have used one of their replacements, so it is not like the team doesn’t suffer due to the incident.
I thought to some extent about a team playing a lesser player in order to inflict damage to a key opposition player, but feel this would not occur and would be fairly obvious if it did. Certainly, a significant sanction by the judiciary would certainly put a halt to such actions.
I strongly believe that rugby supporters should be rewarded by a fair contest, where 15 players a side remain for the duration. However the team should not go completely unpunished, and therefore a fair sanction of 10 mins for foul, professional foul and red card offences would be appropriate.
Such action in no way condones foul play, but would address perceived inconsistencies in some of the red cards that have been given, certainly during the last couple of seasons.
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- Rugby Union