View Full Version : Leg Strapping
Reffing game on Wednesday came across for the first time a player wearing manufactured thigh grips. I hope you are all following. Normally players nowadays if they are going to be supported in a lineout they apply a dressing with some padding in around their thighs for the supporter to grip.
These ones were purpose built, like Kooga type undershorts, but just on the thigh with an inbuilt soft pad.
Now as they were not displaying any form of IRB symbol I told him he could not wear them. He immediately pointed to the other 2nd row who had a set of DIY ones made from tape, bandage and foam. I informed him that as sole arbitor of the laws on the day I was not going to change my mind and would seek clarification on both the manufactured and the home made items.
What do you think, or what have you done?
In your opinion, did the item of clothing comply with Law 4 (which does not prescribe the need for an IRB logo)? Compressibility? Washability? Was there anything dangerous?
According to law 4 and regulation 12 any padding must have an uncompressed thickness of less than 0.5cm.
The link above goes to an IRB reminder sent out before the beginning of this season, explaining the law.
The suggestion from the London Society to it's referees is to check players strapping at the same time as studs before the match and if you are not happy then ask players to remove the strapping.
By the way - the answer given was b) - PK at the point of the tackle. I don't think the 10m Law specifies the location of the penalty kick. There is at least an argument that the offside player is always offside, even before the tackle, and has failed to get to the true offide line - 10m back from the catcher. So why not penalise at the offside line, to maintain consistency with similar provisions such as the offside line for non-participants at a line-out?
The answer to what? :confused:
I am afraid it is not so simple as "no iRB logo, no wear". As OB points out, many of the accessories mentioned in Law 4.1 (including supports made of elasticated, washable and compressible material) do not require an iRB logo. regulation 12 lays down specifications only as regards 4.1 b, d, g and e. 4.1a (supports) is arguably unregulated.
I say "arguably" because the scope of 4.4(g) is open to question. It deals with "other items", and these must conform to regulation 12 as regards the degree of compressibility. It is unclear whether these regulated items are those "other" than the items mentioned in the preceding provisions of Law 4, or whether it encompasses only the items not previously mentioned in Law 4.4 alone.
Irrespective, did you conclude that there was an element of the support that exceeded 0.5cm uncompressed? That would probably be the lifting bar. If so, did you ensure that the Heath Robinson version (a bit of tape and a cut-off bit of pipe lagging, most likely) was less thick when uncompressed?
In summary, I find it hard to get worked up about these lifting bars, especially as TV displays them to all and sundry throughout the world throughout the year and the powers-that-be couldn't care less. If I were to prevent a guy from wearing the branded £25 version, I'd also prevent the £2.50 version on the same grounds and tell them all that TV rugby is no guarantor of legitimacy, as Deano could tell you. But I really wouldn't want to go there.
Players providing their own built in manufactured thigh grips is going to save my club and I assume many others a fortune in strapping.:clap:
There is no way that the heath robinson versions we all allow week in week out are 0.5cm uncompressed anyway.
Hope the IRB stick a label on them soon.
As I've said before I used to get away with very tough RL thigh pads to stop dead legs which did not compress so as long as they are soft foam rubber I'd be happy with them
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