View Full Version : making a mark
interesting one this afternoon... both side's full backs called for marks, not awarded, whilst on the run but caught cleanly within the 22 with a simultaneous call (not from kick offs).
Ref clarified his interpretation as he would allow "up and down travel only". I presume by this the catcher could be in the act of jumping to catch the ball - but not running along.
Comments? Verifications (either way)?
"LAW 18 – MARK
To make a mark, a player must be on or behind that player’s 22-metre line. A
player with one foot on the 22-metre line or behind it is considered to be ‘in the 22’. The player must make a clean catch direct from an opponent’s kick and at the same time shout “Mark!”. A mark cannot be made from a kick-off."
Now, to me that looks as if this ref was horribly wrong (although at least consitently wrong) - there is nothing requiring "up and own" travel only, or expressly forbissing lateral travel ie running.
Perhaps more importantly, if in your opinion as refs yourselves my interpretation is correct, where do such rogue interpretations come from, especially when as a member of a refs society (ref was wearing a badged shirt) a referee presumably gets constant training and assessment (or do assessors not ask questions like "explain why did you not award the mark to blue in the 30th minute?")
Sounds to me like he was incorrect in this instance, I have never heard of such interpritation.
What level/league does your team play in Didds? Just out of interest?
As you say though, at least he was consistent.
Didds - How young was the referee? In days of old when men were bold and women weren't invented...one had to be on the ground and had to make a mark with ones foot. A player can now call a mark while he is in the air if he chooses with the usual 22m and non kick off caveats.
From your description, I would say the referee had picked up a wrong idea somewhere.
Had I been advising, I would indeed (assuming I had noticed it, of course!) have asked him what his thinking was. I would then have suggested he should check with senior referees, because my understanding was that it did not matter. I would also be interested to know where he got the idea from.
I agree that he was wrong, and again, at least he was consistent!
I would have thought that it would be the other way round if anything. "One foot on or behind the 22m line" would imply a player has to be on the ground to be deemed in the 22m. (Of course, I along with 99.9% of other referees disregard the pedantic reading of this).
Level 8 - Dorset & Wilts Div 1 (North).
FWIW & FYI the ref sported a Somerset society shirt.
This is not a "dig" at the bloke who otherwisemdid a reasonable job... but its little "odditoes" like this one that just niggle away at me!!
ref would have been in his late 40s I guess... agree with what you say Deeps about the modern mark ... but the "modern" mark law has been around for several years now - so its hardly "modern" any longer really...
He did allow a jumping mark suring the game (ie feet off the ground) so it wasn't just that he was playing from the 1977 law book... he just didn;t award any running marks (IIRC 3 of them called in the game between both sides, and all looking totally acceptable calls).
... whilst is it not the case that a player that jumped FROM the 22 but landed outside the 22 can call the mark successfully? (But not if he lands in touch?)
I don't know, I think I would not give it on the same lines as hitting the ball in ply and landing in touch is a lineout, and playing the ball in a lineout and landing in the 5 is a free kick, I would say on this one, play on.
The law does not actually say anything about running, jumping, or even being in the air. There is a picture showing a player in the air catching the ball, but you cannot tell if he was running or not. I am not aware of any ruling on this point, but I see no reason at all to distinguish a running jump from a standing one. It is surely accepted that catching the ball while running but not jumping is OK.
Here is the history of the relevant bit of law:-
pre 1992: "A player makes a fair catch when being stationary with both feet on the ground …"
1992/3: "A player makes a fair catch when […] he having at least one foot on the ground …"
1996/7: "A player makes a fair catch when […] he cleanly catches the ball …" (no mention of feet)
2000/1: "To make a mark a player must be on or behind that player's 22 metre line. A player with one foot on the 22 metre line or behind it is considered to be 'in the 22'." The picture shows a player with one foot on the ground.
2001/2: the wording is the same, but the picture of a player in the air is added.
As to whether he is inside the 22 or not, the analogy with touch can be misleading. What matters must be where the player is when he makes the mark, not where he lands afterwards. Thus if he makes a running, jumping catch inside the touch line, but lands in touch, the Mark (if awarded) takes precedence. He was not in touch when he made the Mark. Similarly if he crosses the 22 after making the Mark.
There was a discussion on this point in the RFU Referees Forum last October http://www.rfu.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/for.showthread/threadid/4773.cfm (http://www.rfu.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/for.showthread/threadid/4773.cfm)
once again thanks for the clarification OB :-)
I agree OB, this is another very ambiguous law, and if you know of no ruling, no-one does! I think the last point though brings the most problems, it's a play it by sight case really.
I think generally though, that anyone in the 22, whether running or in the air will have their mark given...generally. Might be worth putting on a pre-match check list (if you're a coach/player).
Didds, while your description makes it sound like a systematic error in the ref's knowledge of the Law, I am curious to ask: were the catches perfectly clean in the marks he disallowed? If the catch is bobbled, no mark is given, and it's possible that he simply mangled his explanation of the (non-)call when questioned. I've made decisions in the past that I knew were right, but garbled my reasoning when questioned on the field (and then cleared it up in the club house afterwards) - I just wonder whether he was possibly struck by the same affliction?
pablo - catches were perfectly clean. Nice dry afternoon etc.
And I can't see how disallowing a mark for a bobble could be explained with the words "motion is up and down only" (or somesuch). Especially when he consistantly refused marks (awarded 1 out of 5 all of which looked perfectly fine. If anything the ione given was the dodgiest as the call itself was badly timed WRT the catch!)
OK, then I'm at a loss to explain it. Looks like he's picked up a misconception about the mark somewhere (TV? a veteran ref? his dad?) and not checked it against the current Laws. What level was the game?
I concur about him having picked up some bizarre interpretation somewhere _ i had wanted to check that it wasn't my own bizarre interpretation first.
Its my second query I'm most interested in though... how can "loose cannon" unique and individual interpretations like this occur, especially regarding quite simplistic laws that have been around for a reasonable amount of time (ie not a law change from 3 weeks ago).
Along with- from memory - rulings like
- full back covering oppo kick into in-goal applyng downward pressure but the ball "orange pips" away from under the hand being not recognised as "there was no control"
- throwing in (lineout) team penalised when oppo jumper at 1 in the line prevented the ball from travelling 5m because "its the throwing team's responsibility to ensure the ball travels the 5m"
... I just cannot understand how these interpretatons can exist .. or haven't been cleared up through assessment etc.
It just seems bizarre!
(this sin;t a rant at rfs or the rteffing system... just an attempt to understand how these personal interpretations don;t ever get dealt with).
My only cinclusion is that the ref has never thought that his ruling was wrong, and so has never queried his version with other referees?
And I also suppose that at said referees assessments, the fact it happens only a couple of times in a game, if that, is probably discounted?
I know refs don't get their books out in the bar afterwards, but maybe if you asked if he could email you with the specific law as you were not aware of it, he may then look for himself. It's possible.
As regards inconsistency, I think it may come down to frequency of use of the Laws. I don't know if you ever saw the sports psychology documentatry that heavily featured David Beckham's free kick that bailed England out of non-qualification for the world cup? When the body regularly practices an action or the brain frequently processes the same signal, then it becomes "learned" and the processing moves from the motor cortex to the cerebellum (sports science grads step in at this point and rescue me please). This part of the brain controls body functions like breathing, i.e. "background" activity that just happens. The more you can move basic functions to this part of the brain, the more of the main cortex is freed up to work on the difficult stuff. So in the documentary, the theory is that Beckham took that same free kick 100 times a day for ten years and therefore his brain could focus on blocking out the distractions from the crowd rather than having to instruct his muscles how to move the leg to get the perfect shot.
Maybe a referee needs to to regularly practice every section of the Law until it becomes ingrained in the cerebellum and is as natural as breathing? Without frequent and regular practice you end up having to think through every situation that is presented in a match, work out the Law that applies, and by the time you've dropped down to subsection 5, point (g), the game has moved on and you're forced to think about something different, and then it's too late to go back.
The bovine fibre answer to explain a (non)decision may simply be human nature. It is an attempt, under presssure probably, to divert attention from a personal mistake. It's not easy to stand on a rugby pitch with 30 people around you and say "sorry, I screwed that one up because I couldn't get my mind around both the Laws and a fast-moving set of actions at the same time". I bet that your referee thought about it all the way home in the car. I've certainly been there.
i shall remember this subtle ploy Robert! Excellent idea!!
well, he had four such calls to mull over then... I can understand a "mistake" once in the same game. But not four times! It had to be a genuine case of a personal interpretation. Especially as both captains queried him about it and he explained it to them, to one side, at half time!
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