Clip 2 - 16 February 2018 - Law 14

Release?

In the Sevens at Hamilton in New Zealand, England play South Africa. England have the ball and their player is held by a South African. Neither go to ground. Another Englishman arrives and joins in.

That makes a maul.

DEFINITION: Maul: A phase of play consisting of a ball-carrier and at least one player from each team, bound together and on their feet.

There is a ball carrier.
There is a South African.
there is an English man.
THERE IS A maul.

The ball carrier struggles to get a knee on the ground. The referee then calls release as if this were a tackle.

DEFINITION: Tackle: The method of holding a ball-carrier and bringing that player to ground.

In this case the ball-carrier is not brought to ground; he fights to get to ground. In any case, however he gets to ground does not stop the maul from being a maul.

This has become common practice. If it is to continue, the law should be changed.
 

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