New Zealand Rugby has confirmed they won’t be following World Rugby’s proposal to ban scrum resets, mauls, team huddles and upright tackles when Super Rugby Aotearoa kicks off next month.
According to the New Zealand Herald, World Rugby announced that it was considering the moves to reduce the transmission risk of the coronavirus, but will ultimately leave any final decision up to national bodies.
In an attempt to minimise time spent in close-contact situations, the World Rugby medical group proposed that scrums be replaced, mauls removed from the game, lineouts be uncontested, team huddles and spitting be scrapped while players would be required to change their kit and headgear at half time.
NZR chief executive Mark Robinson told Radio New Zealand that those rules won’t apply to the new New Zealand-based competition which begins on 13 June.
‘There don’t appear to be any signs of community transmission in New Zealand, so our circumstances are quite different and we don’t anticipate the need to adopt the law proposals,’ he said.
‘We have been open with World Rugby about this and they understand our unique situation. We will continue to manage all health risks with stringent protocols and be led by our public health authorities.
‘The protocols including daily symptom and temperature checks, stringent hygiene and cleaning, contact tracing practices, and asking anyone who feels unwell to stay away, self-isolate and get tested.’
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