SANZAAR clarifies Super Rugby laws for 2016

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :In the news, Original Content, Super Rugby on 2 Feb 2016 at 10:48
Tagged with : , , , ,

Right. Unfortunately, some of the prior speculation about law changes for Super Rugby was just that and has not been confirmed. Below is the gospel version from the hastily renamed “SANZAAR” organization.

Law variations and game innovations for 2016 will include:

– Four-try bonus point to be replaced by a bonus point that is awarded for finishing three or more tries ahead of your opponent (bonus point for losing by 7 or fewer points remains unchanged) and;
– Penalty options after time has expired to now include playing a lineout.

I’ll call out the following additional quotes from Andy Marinos in the press release:

“These law amendments, while subtle in nature, will help Super Rugby’s continuing evolution as the best provincial competition in the world.”

“The change to the bonus point, which has been widely discussed throughout the past week as one potential innovation, has now been formally approved by the ExCo for the 2016 season. By implementing this change, we expect to see more attacking and competitive rugby as teams will be asked to keep their foot down for the full 80 in order to claim the try-scoring bonus point, which we have seen used to great effect in France over the past few years.

“In addition to this, permitting teams to opt for a lineout after time has expired serves to disincentive opponents from infringing and aims to reward sides that are particularly strong set-piece exponents which, when coupled with the previously mentioned changes, encourages more attacking and competitive rugby.”

“It was also considered whether to adopt pre-2013 television match official protocol whereby the TMO could only rule on try scoring, in-goal and foul play, however following consultation with World Rugby, where we were informed they would be conducting a TMO review this year, we have decided to retain ‘status quo’ for 2016 and will participate fully with the review in an effort to ensure that this area of the game gets the focus and attention it deserves.”

So, there’s some bad new here in that we’re going to have to put up with yet more insufferable TMO muddling for a little while longer. Oh well!


  • Boooo to both changes, I am actually struggling to think of which one I dislike more…

  • Comment 1, posted at 02.02.16 11:04:15 by Seth101 Reply
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  • @Seth101 (Comment 1) : I’m kind of with you

  • Comment 2, posted at 02.02.16 11:04:34 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @Seth101 (Comment 1) : Going to have to go with lineouts after the hooter, yay for more rolling mauls πŸ™„

  • Comment 3, posted at 02.02.16 11:05:32 by Seth101 Reply
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  • @Seth101 (Comment 3) : shucks … the bulls just won super rugby …

  • Comment 4, posted at 02.02.16 11:17:41 by Zibbie Reply
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  • @Zibbie (Comment 4) : the Bulls won Super Rugby weeks ago – when Pollard got injured.

  • Comment 5, posted at 02.02.16 11:20:50 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Zibbie (Comment 4) : SANZAAAAAR “We want to make rugby more entertaining, so we made the most broken tactic in the game even more powerful”.

  • Comment 6, posted at 02.02.16 11:20:53 by Seth101 Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 5) : πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜† bad boy πŸ˜›

  • Comment 7, posted at 02.02.16 11:26:15 by Zibbie Reply
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  • after what happened in the final of the wellington 7s ,I’m all for more tmo decisions and captains/coaches questioning decisions.

  • Comment 8, posted at 02.02.16 11:29:00 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • Watching the KZN Impi vs Wits last night and one thing I liked was 3 point conversions and 2 point penalty kicks (although it was hard for my mind to adjust) this little switch makes a huge difference for teams as you don’t have the option to sacrifice attacking players for a solid penalty kicker and 4 penalty kicks equals a goal rather then 3 penaltys kicks trumps a goal by 2 points.

    This is extremely subtle but has a HUGE impact on the game and i hope it gets rolled out soon

  • Comment 9, posted at 02.02.16 11:38:32 by Warren Harvey Reply

  • Personal opinion…i like the change to the bonus points as it rewards attack and defense. Although i do wish they would do away with the losing bonus point. In terms of the lineout after fulltime…not sure i like that one.

  • Comment 10, posted at 02.02.16 11:59:54 by SheldonK Reply

  • With regards to the bonus point change (3 more tries); has anyone seen anything online of a “2015 Super Rugby Table” with 2016 bonus point scoring applied. Would be interesting to see what the table would have ended up looking like,

  • Comment 11, posted at 02.02.16 12:08:07 by Jeremiser Reply
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  • the try still remains a 5-pointer,but the conversion is a 3-pointer.why not make the try a 6-pointer?why reward the conversion with an extra point?

  • Comment 12, posted at 02.02.16 12:11:25 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • @Jeremiser (Comment 11) :
    A comment from the previous article, kind of what you looking for, but with the 2014 season. Warren Harvey’s comment not my own, thank him.

    “Mmmh this has ups and downs its interesting as it strips more bonus points than it adds (there are lots of 4 tries to 4 which now give 0 instead of 1 each… the down side is you only chase the three points try difference if you playing someone from your pool as you are fighting to squash their bonus point rather than get your own.

    Because I can… I decided to run the new bonus points scheme against 2014 season (the last season which I acknowledge) and a few interesting things are shown… basically it sucks for New Zealand (YEAH finally something to go against them) and great for Aus (WTF another advantage to the Aus who actually had some teams gaining)

    Aus bonus points was positively hit going up from 183 to 184 (hardest hit was Reds who wend from 28 to 25… most positive was the force from 40 to 44) and no positional changes Sharks lost one bonus point and stayed on the top of the log

    SA bonus points goes from 174 to 168 (hardest hit was Cheetahs) and no positional changes Sharks lost one bonus point and stayed on the top of the log

    NZ Bonus points drop the most from 215 to 205 (hardest hit was highlanders losing 4 and the only positive was hurricanes gaining 3… the other lost 3)

    the combined pool changed from

    Waratahs 58
    Crusaders 48
    Sharks 46
    Brumbies 42
    Chiefs 44
    Highlanders 42


    Waratahs 57
    Sharks 49
    Crusaders 48
    Hurricanes 44
    Force 44
    Chiefs 41”

    All Credit to Warren Harvey

  • Comment 13, posted at 02.02.16 12:15:17 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
  • @Seth101 (Comment 13) : and that would have meant a home semi vs the crusaders.

  • Comment 14, posted at 02.02.16 12:18:58 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • @Warren Harvey (Comment 9) : Any chance you could recognize 2015 for long enough to give us a break down of how it would have changed? πŸ˜€

  • Comment 15, posted at 02.02.16 12:27:17 by Seth101 Reply
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  • I don’t terribly mind the change to the bonus points. Less sure about the line out after the hooter but let’s see how it goes.

  • Comment 16, posted at 02.02.16 12:34:30 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 16) : You can do so much more with a lineout. If I ever see a tapped penalty at the end again where the ball get’s given to a 120kg+ prop that falls on the ground before even making proper contact again, then I will eat my damn hat.

  • Comment 17, posted at 02.02.16 12:51:17 by KingRiaan Reply

  • @vanmartin (Comment 16) : I wonder how many teams will make the mistake of kicking the ball out on a penalty, affording the opposition a final chance to win the game?

    Even worse, how many will completely butcher tha penalty kick to the line by merely kicking it into the stands…..

  • Comment 18, posted at 02.02.16 13:07:29 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @KingRiaan (Comment 17) : I wonder if that applies to successive penalties. So time a penalty…kick to touch…maul pulled down and penalty awarded- can they go for touch again?

  • Comment 19, posted at 02.02.16 13:08:34 by SheldonK Reply

  • @Seth101 (Comment 13) : Thank you very much. Obviously the mindset of the teams would have changed which would have influenced play, but interesting never the less. I guess it wil be a matter of who adapts to it best..and lets hope for once SA sides arent the slowest in this regard.

  • Comment 20, posted at 02.02.16 13:09:50 by Jeremiser Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 19) : I’m sure they can. My reading is that any penalty awarded at any stage of the game can now be kicked to touch, with the ref obliged to allow the ensuing lineout to take place. I would imagine the non-offending team would have the option of NOT taking the lineout, though. Often, if you’re sure of the win and are given a penalty on the final whistle, all you’ll want to do is kick it out and end the game.

  • Comment 21, posted at 02.02.16 13:12:06 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @SheldonK (Comment 19) : That is actually a good question. i think it probably will only be allowed if the penalty happened in regular time before the clock ran out, but the action of playing the penalty will happen in ”extra” time.

  • Comment 22, posted at 02.02.16 13:13:42 by KingRiaan Reply

  • @KingRiaan (Comment 22) : dunno…. a grey area. Let’s seek clarification

  • Comment 23, posted at 02.02.16 13:20:47 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 23) : I’m trying to google the official rule but having no luck.

  • Comment 24, posted at 02.02.16 13:21:42 by KingRiaan Reply

  • @robdylan (Comment 21) : Now you see that second part is different to what ive heard on that law. Ive heard that if you kick it out as a result of a penalty after the whistle even the defending team has to play the lineout and thereafter if they kick it out the game is over. Im open to being corrected but thats the interpretation i heard. So by that interpretation the attacking team would only be able to kick it out once

  • Comment 25, posted at 02.02.16 13:25:31 by SheldonK Reply

  • what you could do is take the penalty all the way back to your tryline,tap it,and kick it out.or just tap it and pass and kick it out.

  • Comment 26, posted at 02.02.16 14:24:48 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • @50shadesofshark (Comment 26) : πŸ’‘ πŸ’‘ πŸ’‘ :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: Just tap and kick it out, not that hard
    It is only stupid when Hougaard does it in the middle of a match. πŸ˜†

  • Comment 27, posted at 02.02.16 19:05:48 by Dancing Bear Reply
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    Dancing Bear
  • @robdylan (Comment 5) : Hahahahahaha…aaahahahaha!! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 28, posted at 02.02.16 19:54:56 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 18) : I didn’t think of that first bit…it might even be funny to see…as long as it isn’t from the Sharks!

  • Comment 29, posted at 02.02.16 20:01:04 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 21) : I wonder how exactly that “non-offender” aspect will work. Is there any way to get clarification on that? If it’s not as you suggest a lot of team will have to concentrate very well after the hooter goes!

  • Comment 30, posted at 02.02.16 20:04:20 by pastorshark Reply
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  • I’m googling stuff about these law changes and a few things are noticeable:
    1. SANZAAR’s press release is infuriatingly vague!!! Just give us the official wording so that we can make sense of all this. For pete’s sake!!! It’s like their amateurs or something…
    2. The vagueness means we have so many darn questions that, as yet, remain unanswered!!
    a. So they tell us a bonus point is achieved by a team that scores three more tries than the opposition. That technically means one of the teams in a drawn match can get a bonus point…or even a losing team can get the try scoring bonus point. They also tell us this is like the bonus point system in France…but the bonus point system in France clearly states that only a team that WINS and scores 3+ tries more than the opposition gets the try scoring bonus point. So is it going to be like that? If so, tgen why not bloody well say so!
    b. The lineout option from a penalty after the hooter is also explained poorly! Does the team get to choose whether they want a lineout once they’ve kicked it out or MUST they take a lineout once they’ve kicked it out? The answer to that question has a rather large impact on the defensive team that wins a penalty. Or will we see penalties being run out?
    I just wish they would have the decency to explain things clearly when they darn well announce them. I’m getting really tired of these clowns!!!

  • Comment 31, posted at 02.02.16 20:49:09 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 27) : yes,there is an easier solution πŸ˜€

  • Comment 32, posted at 02.02.16 20:56:01 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • @pastorshark (Comment 31) : Well……..they haven’t quite worked it all out yet, but don’t you worry, by mid season it shall be clear as mud. :mrgreen: 😈

  • Comment 33, posted at 03.02.16 06:14:32 by Dancing Bear Reply
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    Dancing Bear
  • @KingRiaan (Comment 22) : The way I understand it is that a match cannot end with a kick into touch after a penalty like the Australian competition the last season
    @Dancing Bear (Comment 27) : exactly that

  • Comment 34, posted at 03.02.16 19:11:14 by BR Reply
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  • Happy about the tmo ruling and the bonus point rule

  • Comment 35, posted at 03.02.16 19:13:26 by BR Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 31) : it is not that vague we shouldn’t try to complicate it, take it like he said it a team may opt for a line out doesn’t matter when the penalty was awarded, the only thing I don’t like about it is we may see games going into 85-90 min

  • Comment 36, posted at 03.02.16 19:17:08 by BR Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 33) : ARGH!!!! Clowns…

  • Comment 37, posted at 03.02.16 21:54:07 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @BR (Comment 34) : @BR (Comment 36) : But even your two statements are unclear:
    – “a match cannot end with a kick into touch after a penalty”…in other words, if the defensive team wins a penalty and kicks it out a lineout must still take place?
    – “a team may opt for a lineout”…in other words, if the defensive team wins a penalty and kicks it out they may opt not to have the lineout?
    Apologies if I’m the one who is daft but I haven’t read anything anywhere to clarify which of the two options above applies and I’m frustrated!

  • Comment 38, posted at 03.02.16 22:00:43 by pastorshark Reply
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  • if a penalty is awarded after the hooter ,then there is now the option to take a penalty kick to touch and play the line-out.otherwise you take the penalty via a tap kick or a scrum.if you are leading,then just tap the ball (play it)and then kick it over.

  • Comment 39, posted at 03.02.16 22:10:25 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • @50shadesofshark (Comment 39) : If that’s the case, I don’t like it. If the defending team wins a penalty in a courageous defensive effort they should deserve to just kick it out and celebrate the win…making them tap it first is a bit pointless. Anyway, we’ll see…

  • Comment 40, posted at 03.02.16 22:23:22 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 40) : yes,agree.but if sanzaar does insist, the tap and then kick (or even running out of play),will have to do to avoid the line-out.

  • Comment 41, posted at 03.02.16 22:31:10 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • @pastorshark (Comment 38) : if you kick a penalty into touch you opt for a line out, I do agree having to tap kick before kicking it out to end the game is useless but I do agree with their sentiments of teams opting for a line out just before full time and the other team infringe on purpose the team awarded a penalty is forced to run it when time is finished and that is just not right,and unfortunately for a leading team there is no way getting around the fact that when you kick into touch you opt for a line out.

  • Comment 42, posted at 03.02.16 23:06:46 by BR Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 38) : Hopefully Saru will release a statement to make it more clear other wise there will be a lot of confused and pissed of supporters, luckily for me SARRA decided even though we don’t officiate on that level it will be use full to send us better explanations.

  • Comment 43, posted at 03.02.16 23:12:15 by BR Reply
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  • @BR (Comment 42) : wonder if kicking the ball out over the ingoal line will be a better option or tapping and running into touch?!?!

  • Comment 44, posted at 05.02.16 07:45:11 by JD Reply
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