Sanzaar has confirmed that the new high-tackle warning system for the 2020 Vodacom Super Rugby season will not carry any sanctions for players.
World Rugby last week announced a set of law adjustments that would be trialled at various tournaments this year as the governing body looks to improve player safety.
The only law that will be trialled in the 2020 Super Rugby season is a high-tackle warning law, under which warnings will be issued to players for high-risk tackle techniques by a tackle-technique review officer.
It was originally thought that players would be suspended for two such warnings, but in a statement released on Monday, Sanzaar confirmed that no sanctions would be imposed as part of the new law.
‘Preventing dangerous high tackles remains a high priority for Sanzaar and World Rugby as we look to reduce the number of concussions,’ the statement from Sanzaar read. ‘Research has shown that the majority of concussions are caused by tacklers who tackle with an upright body. Sanzaar is focusing on implementing a process that identifies high-risk upright tackles.
‘The shadow trial will see Sanzaar looking at all tackles each round and identifying tackles in which the tackler is in an upright body position, and in the event it is deemed the tackler has shown poor technique in executing an upright tackle, a warning may be sent to the player and player’s coach. This process will be an educational process that will aim to educate players and coaches of high-risk behaviours by identifying poor tackle techniques and seeking to inform players of better choices they can make in the tackle zone.
‘This process will not impose any sanctions on players. This is not designed to penalise the player in any way but to hopefully shine a light on poor technique that has been shown to increase the risk of significant injury and attempt to affect behavioural change via education and identification.’
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