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Robert Burns
19-04-08, 14:04
One thing I havn't spoken about on here but I think is an excellent addition to the game of rugby is the Mayday call that Australia has.

Quoted from the ARU safety directive this procedures is now instilled in the game for all levels and is now part of the pre match brief. (Asking if they know it and too explain it, not teaching them it)

Mayday Call

The “MAYDAY” call is a safety technique put into operation when a scrum is considered by a player to be collapsing, or has collapsed, or when a player believes that he/she is in a potentially dangerous position.

It was considered necessary to have a recognised call Australia wide which would allow people to have an understanding of what actions they should take when one of the above mentioned situations occurs in a scrum.

The following is a description of the process to be followed by players, when the “MAYDAY” call is heard. Referees should be acutely aware of the process, as they may well be the person who can talk the players through the correct disengagement sequence. The injured player should not be moved after the “MAYDAY” call. All other players should follow the sequence below.

1. The player under pressure makes a loud call, “MAYDAY”. (Other members of the scrum should repeat this call to ensure that it is heard by members of both scrums and the referee)

2. The referee should immediately blow the whistle.

3. All players should immediately stop pushing to release pressure on the front row.

4. All players in the scrum should immediately drop to their knees. This further relieves the pressure. At the same time the top half of their body is lowered to the ground.

5. The front row then land on their face. This is termed a “face plant”.

6. All players are to remain in this position until the referee supervises the disassembly of the scrum.

7. The call is then made by the referee, “Who first called Mayday and are you OK”?

8. If there is no reply the referee asks the players to number off; 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 in order to determine that all players are uninjured. (Players at 6, 7 and 8 are not at risk)

9. On the referees instruction the scrum is disassembled:

10. The number 8 moves back and away.

11. The flankers release their binds and move outwards and away.

12. The locks release their binds and move outwards and away.

13. The prop forwards then release their bind on the hooker and move outwards and away.
Note. If a front row player is bound to a player who has suffered an injury, the bind with that person will be maintained until medical assistance arrives.

14. The hooker, in the centre of the scrum, will be the only remaining player.

Essential points to remember.

At no time should any of the players turn their head to the side. Rotation and flexion increases the chance of injuries.

All players must keep their chin and chest through and be facing straight ahead throughout the Mayday situation.

Do not move an injured player. Leave them exactly where they are until medical assistance arrives.

The props should release their bind on the opposition only, immediately the Mayday procedures commence.

All other binds are maintained and the players remain in position until the scrum is disassembled on instructions from the referee.

If no player is seriously injured, the referee will ask the player who first called “Mayday” if he is fit to continue, before the scrum is reset.



Should this be introduced to all Rugby?

For those that are interested the whole document can be found here:

http://qru.com.au/verve/_resources/Safety_Directives_2007.pdf

SimonSmith
19-04-08, 16:04
Yes. It should

OB..
19-04-08, 20:04
It seems very sensible.

My only concern would be that it is a very rare situation, and players are likely to forget the details - unless they practice it.

McDuck
19-04-08, 22:04
Sounds good how is the game restarted?

Dickie E
19-04-08, 23:04
I've been using this for a number of years now.

It is used surprisingly frequently - I hear it in every 3rd game or so; there were 2 mayday calls in the game I reffed yesterday.

This is explained by the fact that players tend to use it more often than may be strictly necessary - eg when a scrum collapses and a player is uncomfortable in the situation. I'm not too fussed by that - safety first.

The restart is a scrum reset - original team feeds.

Deeps
20-04-08, 00:04
...It is used surprisingly frequently... players tend to use it more often than may be strictly necessary - eg when a scrum collapses and a player is uncomfortable in the situation.

I would need to see some convincing injury statistics as to just how effective a MayDay system is before jumping on the safety bandwagon by advocating its widespread introduction. I feel it could be abused to the detriment of the flow of the game and create yet another safety rod to beat the referee with.

There is no substitute for proper training and diligent management.

Robert Burns
20-04-08, 11:04
I have to admit it's never been used in a game of mine yet, but if it prevents one serious injury surely it's worthwhile?

Jono
20-04-08, 12:04
I have to admit it's never been used in a game of mine yet, but if it prevents one serious injury surely it's worthwhile?

First I've heard of it but I'm with you 100%, wouldn't want anyone to end up with a broken neck if there is a procedure to potentially stop it happening.

madref
21-04-08, 11:04
Hi

Great idea for safety, but as an ex prop if I was defending a 5m attcking scrum and I was going backwards at a rate of knots. MAYDAY would be shouted.

How do you police that ?

Madref

Dickie E
21-04-08, 12:04
Hi

Great idea for safety, but as an ex prop if I was defending a 5m attcking scrum and I was going backwards at a rate of knots. MAYDAY would be shouted.

How do you police that ?

Madref

In my experience a mayday call has always followed a collapsed scrum.

Robert Burns
21-04-08, 12:04
Yes, once the hit has been made and the ball is in it is going to be obvious of what you are doing.

As Dickie says it is for use on collapses or the hit.

dave_clark
21-04-08, 13:04
remember the 2003 world cup semi? a similar thing was used then, when the aussie prop (Ben Darwin was it?) got injured. standardising this call, especially if playing against players with a different first language, would make a lot of sense.

i disagree that it would be used willy nilly - i don't think that front row players are that underhand or dishonourable :)

p.s. the pedant in me feels compelled to point out that the call is actually m'aidez :D

Deeps
21-04-08, 14:04
r- i don't think that front row players are that underhand or dishonourable

:rolleyes:

Simon Thomas
21-04-08, 14:04
i disagree that it would be used willy nilly - i don't think that front row players are that underhand or dishonourable

Gulp !

I am speechless - must be just the FR players I have played with and refereed then.

Phil E
21-04-08, 14:04
i don't think that front row players are that underhand or dishonourable :)

406

.....

SimonSmith
21-04-08, 15:04
In any other circumstances, I'd agree with the laughter. However, I'd like to think that with something like this, the FR wouldn't dick around.

Bryan
21-04-08, 16:04
We use the same thing Oop North. Part of the pre-match FR brief is to identify whether they're familiar with Mayday (we just introduced it). If they say no, it's uncontested scrums (more of an insurance / liability issue than a "suitably trained FR" issue).

With Dickie's point about Mayday being used too frequently, after the 2nd call would you consider going uncontested? I ask as the point of this action is that it's in a "holy crap I think I broke my neck" situation, and not in a "oh bugger, another face full of dirt".

Like SimonS says, I doubt the FR are going to d!ck around; the higher up you go in terms of match level, the more serious I'd think it would be (though I'd still deal with it in the same way at all levels).

OB..
21-04-08, 22:04
p.s. the pedant in me feels compelled to point out that the call is actually m'aidez :D
From Wikipedia:
The Mayday callsign was originated in 1923 by Frederick Stanley Mockford (1897-1962). A senior radio officer at Croydon Airport in London, Mockford was asked to think of a word that would indicate distress and would easily be understood by all pilots and ground staff in an emergency. Since much of the traffic at the time was between Croydon and Le Bourget Airport in Paris, he proposed the word "Mayday" from the French m'aider.

Not that Wikipedia is always reliable ...

dave_clark
21-04-08, 23:04
i shall duly consider myself hoisted up.

Robert Burns
22-04-08, 01:04
Yes, almost definetly if used twice by the same team. I would put the onus on the player heavily though, are you comfortable to continue with contested scrums? If I let them continue thirst would definetly go uncontested.

If I had an suspicion it was being used falsely I would probably write to my Refs Assoc and let them know my feeling so they could deal with it through the club.