Memo re Cannon Ball Tackle

Re - Safety of Players
From - Martin Meredith
2 April 2012

The NSWRL wish to remind all Junior League’s and Referee’s Association of the paramount importance of player safety during games. All Leagues would be aware the League issued a statement on 5 July 2011 regarding the “cannonball’ tackle.

The NSWRL supports this edict thus ensuring that Referee’s have the same interpretation of the “cannonball tackle” at all levels of the Game.

As a result the following will apply immediately

- Referees are asked to be more vigilant on their held call when an attacking player is being held up by a defender/s in an upright position and he is deemed to be in a vulnerable position.

- If a player offloads the ball at the same time as the referee calls held, the football will be returned to him and he will be asked to play the ball on the mark where held was called by the referee. (This is an interpretation change, not a rule change)

- If in the opinion of the referee a player forcefully spears his body at an opponent’s leg/s in a “Dangerous” manner he will be penalised by the referee.

-  A player may face further action by the Local League Judiciary if he forcefully spears his body in a “Dangerous” manner at an opponent’s leg/s whilst an opponent is deemed to be in a vulnerable position (being held in a tackle by other defending players).

- “Dangerous” in circumstances detailed above is defined as contact that involved an unacceptable risk of injury to the opposing player.


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