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Account Deleted
02-11-05, 22:11
Scrum to Blue. Blue hook ball and it moves towards the No 8's feet. Blue scrum half retreats away from the scrum expecting No 8 to pick up and drive. This does not happen so SH returns to back of scrum. He stands behind the back foot. He takes tha ball out of the scrum and passes the ball.

Ref blows and gives penalty against Blue. There is no signal ffrom the ref as to the offence just a point towards the SH.

I can not see in the Law book why the SH could not return to the Scrum as long as he abserves the back foot os line.

Was he correct?

OB..
02-11-05, 23:11
I suppose the most likely is that he decided the SH was dummying.

Account Deleted
02-11-05, 23:11
I thoght that was possible. However, upon checking that's only a free kick offence. { Law 20.9(h)}

OB..
03-11-05, 00:11
Yes, of course. So inthat case, onyour description , it ios most liekly that he made a mistake.

However he could have spotted the second row releasing is binding to punch the opposing hooker and you missed it ...... :)

Account Deleted
03-11-05, 08:11
It could have been a range of offences. The only thing that helped was the point at the SH. Sadly most of the penalties / free Kicks did not come with a signal indicating the nature of the offence. Which frustrated the spectators.

I wondered if I had missed a ruling about the SH returning to the scrum. He mauy have confused the Line out offisde line for those not participating in a Line out and that of the scrum.

Mike Whittaker
03-11-05, 08:11
Hopefully this was not a senior game. At the higher levels now, the assessors are not only noting all the penalties and FKs but expecting to be able to identify the offence. If the ref does not make this clear to the assessor then he is in for a rough time with the report!!
At all levels however it is essential that everyone knows what is going on. Wingers and spectators should be informed as to every decision and the ref has a responsibility to ensure that his signals are explanatory and / or he has a loud voice.

madref
03-11-05, 08:11
Hopefully this was not a senior game. At the higher levels now, the assessors are not only noting all the penalties and FKs but expecting to be able to identify the offence. If the ref does not make this clear to the assessor then he is in for a rough time with the report!!
At all levels however it is essential that everyone knows what is going on. Wingers and spectators should be informed as to every decision and the ref has a responsibility to ensure that his signals are explanatory and / or he has a loud voice.

Hi Mike

I agree with you, but has an assessor yourself what is the signal for scrum half dummying ? Hooker dumming at line out ? etc.. could think of a few more as well!

I know we have signals for most things but some are not covered at all.

To orignal thread sounds like dummying to me so ref made a mistake with the PK should have been FK

David

PS sometimes if the other team take a quick PK or FK you do not get time to signal, what is the assessors view on this?

Mike Whittaker
03-11-05, 09:11
Hi Mike

I agree with you, but has an assessor yourself what is the signal for scrum half dummying ? Hooker dumming at line out ? etc.. could think of a few more as well!

I know we have signals for most things but some are not covered at all.

To orignal thread sounds like dummying to me so ref made a mistake with the PK should have been FK

David

PS sometimes if the other team take a quick PK or FK you do not get time to signal, what is the assessors view on this?

Interesting David, but to be consistent with my input on this board I am not going to be prescriptive!!

Assessors look to refs to show their management skills and a bit of pragmatism as well. If more is needed than a loud voice then how about mimicking the action of the player?

As for the quick PK, if you remember to whistle/signal (primary) before you start chatting about it then you should have time for a quick secondary as well... Watch how the top boys do it... :)

Account Deleted
03-11-05, 09:11
Hopefully this was not a senior game. At the higher levels now, the assessors are not only noting all the penalties and FKs but expecting to be able to identify the offence. If the ref does not make this clear to the assessor then he is in for a rough time with the report!!
At all levels however it is essential that everyone knows what is going on. Wingers and spectators should be informed as to every decision and the ref has a responsibility to ensure that his signals are explanatory and / or he has a loud voice.

Can't give too much away but safe to say it was a "Major" level league game. One that in during the 1940s/50s once attracted a World recored crowd for a club game (oops have I said too much?).

No quick penalty was taken. Re the signals they were missing for 75-80% of calls. I did not recognise the ref so it could have been his first game at the level (a strange one to give him if it was mind you. Local Derby with 130 years of so of history to it)

ex-lucy
03-11-05, 12:11
Mad Ref "I agree with you, but has an assessor yourself what is the signal for scrum half dummying ? Hooker dumming at line out ? etc.. could think of a few more as well!"

how about ..... thumb inserted in mouth .... with lots of sucking noise .... and other hand finger wagging ?

Did the SH say something? swear ? a move that went wrong, bad comm with No8 so he swore at No8?

jboulet4648
03-11-05, 12:11
I was told for any signal that there isn't one, make it up.....

I got knocked on a eval recently for missing one secondary signal, even though I had great signaling on all the other calls. The signal missed was tackling a player in the air, there is not a signal for that one in the book.....

Bryan
03-11-05, 13:11
I got knocked on a eval recently for missing one secondary signal, even though I had great signaling on all the other calls. The signal missed was tackling a player in the air, there is not a signal for that one in the book.....

Politely tell your assessor he can sh!t in a hat. That's brutal. Imagine if you had to send a player off for a "Christmas Tree Hold". You might get full marks for signaling but a note about your lack of composure and decorum...

I can see a shoulder charge or a Stiff-arm being easily signalled, but tackling a player in the air- rediculous!

-Bryan

ExHookah
03-11-05, 14:11
Politely tell your assessor he can sh!t in a hat. That's brutal. Imagine if you had to send a player off for a "Christmas Tree Hold". You might get full marks for signaling but a note about your lack of composure and decorum...

I can see a shoulder charge or a Stiff-arm being easily signalled, but tackling a player in the air- rediculous!

-Bryan

Bryan,

WTF is a Christmas Tree hold?

Maybe you simulate a bunch of kids tearing open presents, Dad getting hammered on Scotch, the cat climbing the tree and knocking off ornaments, and the Mother in Law complaining that the wife should never have married that good for nothing guy in the first place.

Simon Thomas
03-11-05, 14:11
Due to an injury I have seen more matches this year on TV then ever before.
I am quite shocked by the genreally poor signals and missing secondaries by many of the so-called 'elite' referees.
Also those unfortunate souls that have had me watch them as their advisor or assessor have mostly been given development status for their physical signals in the de-brief & report.
Too many referees are inconsistent with their secondaries, do the secondary before the primary, miss a secondary altogether, or worse still talk the offence then signal it.
Many are too slow getting out their advantage arm, have a poor 'caught line out ball' arm (often bent like free-kick signal), or 'beckon in' after the ball has moved in line out.
Signals are a simple element of refereeing and there really is no excuse.
Where there is no signal - communicate. Signalling a dummy by scrum half at base of scrum or hooker in line-out aren't difficult to do and I think we would all come up with more of less the same signals.
I thought I was a sad b*stard about this element of refereeing but jboulet's assessor is in a class of his own for the 'tackle in the air'.
How about straight arms open and then closed in hug action at 45 deg upwards - for added emphasis jump in air as well maybe, with added 'pas de deux' ?
At lower levels advising is about identifying up to 3 strengths and 3 development items. Hovever when you get to level 5 or above, or using IRB, USA, or FIRA assessment forms, it is all based on negatives not positives - ref gets marked down for missing something, including secondary signals. Therefore 100% consistency and correctness is rewarded, whatever might be happening in the match or with how you communicate !

ExHookah
03-11-05, 14:11
Can you clarify the order of these signals, and also which signal you are terming the primary and secondary.

So there's a knock on. Do you give the knock on signal, and then scrum and indicate which side puts in? That's the order I see most people do it, unless I'm missing something.

It's also amazing how many players don't know the basic signals. I can stand there with my arm out to the side and some numpty will still ask "who's ball sir?", or "what is it?". Always fun to see a scrumhalf try to take a quick tap on a scrum, especially when I've given the full set of signals, and said "knockon by red, scrum down, blue put in".

ex-lucy
03-11-05, 15:11
Simon ... are you kidding?
are you really that serious about signals ?
I dont think i am excellent at signalling (i.e. 100% accurate) in the correct order nor with all known secondaries but i have never been advised to 'develop' them. I dont think it has even been mentioned.
Is this a level thing ? and at my level, it's a nice to have ? Control being more imprtant ? and i should look out for this if i wish to be promoted ?
Or should i watch out for this when i go on exchanges ?
I would say that my communication has always been commented on favourably and positively: 'good loud voice', 'good whistling', 'players and spectators knew what the decision was' etc .... but i know that my secondaries are far from perfect ...
how about you Mike ?

Mike Whittaker
03-11-05, 15:11
Simon ... are you kidding?
are you really that serious about signals ?
I dont think i am excellent at signalling (i.e. 100% accurate) in the correct order nor with all known secondaries but i have never been advised to 'develop' them. I dont think it has even been mentioned.
Is this a level thing ? and at my level, it's a nice to have ? Control being more imprtant ? and i should look out for this if i wish to be promoted ?
Or should i watch out for this when i go on exchanges ?
I would say that my communication has always been commented on favourably and positively: 'good loud voice', 'good whistling', 'players and spectators knew what the decision was' etc .... but i know that my secondaries are far from perfect ...
how about you Mike ?

All I would suggest to you is to watch a game at around your own level as if you were assessing. Get in the mind set, it isn't difficult, honest. Then keep a record of the penalties and free kicks as if you were going to discuss them with the ref afterwards. (If he is a friend then do have a chat ) You are going to discuss how he used this sanction to manage the game. Then you will see how important it is to know why he blew!! You will also realise why it is important for him not just to be in control, but look as though he is!

Simon is being very serious!

OB..
03-11-05, 15:11
My advice is that signals should be automatic, reinforcing what you are saying eg when you say "scrum" you give the signal.

AIUI the first 5 in the law book are Primary (categorising your decision) and the remainder are explanatory (giving the reason for that decision). However 41-46 are sort of primary as well.

You are certainly expected to say and signal "Penalty. Dissent" rather than the other way round.

Bryan
03-11-05, 15:11
WTF is a Christmas Tree hold?

I got this from the old RFU "Crimes Act" detailing what punishment warranted what actions. The Christmas-Tree hold was one of the few that normally warrants an automatic Red Card. Literally, you grab your opponent by the balls. I had to ask our society president at the time after being dumbstruck for a year.


Can you clarify the order of these signals, and also which signal you are terming the primary and secondary.

So there's a knock on. Do you give the knock on signal, and then scrum and indicate which side puts in? That's the order I see most people do it, unless I'm missing something.

Completely the wrong way actually. When we award a penalty, we should normally give the penalty signal first (high arm pointing near 90 degrees), and then the reason for the penalty afterwards (signal for hands in, not rolling away, etc).

At a scrum, the process is exactly the same. Award the primary signal first i.e. arm outstretched to the side which is awarded the scrum and then the secondary signal for the infrigement that led to the scrum (knock-on, forward pass, etc).

The signal for the formation of a scrum that some referees employ (2 quasi-fists coming together above your head) is actually a tertiary signal and isn't even required. I notice that at S12 and nternational level matches this signal is never used.

I got all this from the RFU Referees handbook, as well as from talking to senior referees, etc.

That being said, Jim Fleming once told me that when a match was getting overheated he used to give the 2ndary signal first, that way he'd have both teams anticipate what was going to happen next, then calmy give th 1ary signal, that way delaying any quick tap and ensuing bedlam. He also advised not to do this in front of assessors or else they'll get pertty pissed. His key advice was that the voice was for the players, while the signalling was for the 75,000 referees in the stands that wanted to play along, but that both are equally important.

I'm with Simon. I'm a pedant when it comes to this and it's an easy thing to master.

Hope this helps,
-Bryan

Simon Thomas
03-11-05, 15:11
ex Lucy - yes I am serious for any referee wanting to go any higher - and so are other advisers/assessors who have watched me in last three seasons.
If you want to make a Society or a Federation Development squad, it will be a given requirement you signal correctly 100% of the time.
Signals are a crucial communication tool along with whistle (incl tone) and verbals. Control is the key element.
The higher the level of match, usually they get faster, you have more to look out for and quicker decisions to make. Therefore some things have to happen automatically - e.g. signals. So get them right initially and you will have no problems.
Signals are a management tool - nice crisp slowed down signals can defuse situations, give you time to make a better decision (is it really a yellow card due ?) , etc, or preventative management (e.g. stay onside).

My view is that the signals are there to communicate - with players, with coaches, with spectators, and with any advisor/assessor/referee coach.
As to primaries and secondaries - you must clearly communicate the decision and resulting actions.
In TheHookah'ss knock-on scenario - correct order is whistle, scrum arm to throwing in team (closing hands over head if you must as well), then knockon, and there will have been verbals too, but not a running commentry (I do listen to you Mike !).
These days we seem to have more and more refs doing knock-on in order of secondary (knock on), tertiary (hands over head), and primary (scrum award who to).
I have never seen a full categorization of which are primary, secondary, and tertiary signals (OB can you help ?). My understanding is :
primaries - penalty, freekick, scrum, try, and advantage (5 what's)
secondaries - added infor to describe the reason why or who
tertiaries are extra info - physio, doctor, blood injury, time off/on

Too many players just don't know the signals do they ? I get p*ssed with idiots who ask me whose scrum as I am standing there by the mark with my arm out towards them ! Maybe we should all refer them to
http://www.irb.com/Laws/Laws/RefereeSignals/

Mike Whittaker
03-11-05, 15:11
... Jim Fleming once told me that when a match was getting overheated he used to give the 2ndary signal first, that way he'd have both teams anticipate what was going to happen next, then calmy give th 1ary signal, that way delaying any quick tap and ensuing bedlam. He also advised not to do this in front of assessors or else they'll get pertty pissed. His key advice was that the voice was for the players, while the signalling was for the 75,000 referees in the stands that wanted to play along, but that both are equally important.



...and when we are as good as Jim Fleming we can do it any way we want :)

An assessor once told me that you can always slow the game down when it is overheated by just being a bit slower and if necessary talking to the captain. With youngsters it often pays to be very careful about allowing quick penalties.... think about it.

With regard to JF he has been one of the great signallers. Once watched England v South Africa at Twickers from the next to back row of the top stand. Terrible place to sit, no atmosphere, couldn't hear the match and it was worse than watching on TV. The saving grace was JF who gave signals so clear that the hemorrhoid of refs with whom I was watching was able to follow every decision, to the amazement of the spectators around who were rather less well informed. ;)

ExHookah
03-11-05, 15:11
For penalties I definitely always give the penalty signal first and then signal for diving over/hands in/dissent etc.

Scrums I tend to put the arm out for the scrum, then signal the knockon, then do the two fists together, then arm out again and leave it out until they have got themselves formed and have the ball ready. Partly I do that because of the aforementioned numpties who can't remember what your signal was 5 seconds ago.

I've also have an appraisal where I was told that I should slow down my knockon signal and keep my wrist straight. Apparently the signal I was giving looked rather like I was trying to pickup sailors at the Blue Oyster! Fortunately he caught me early in my career with that, otherwise I'd be attracting some rather unwanted attention at the Bingham Cup in NY next year!

OB..
03-11-05, 15:11
Up to 1999, the RFU produced the law book (in England) and they classified the signals as Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary.

I never really liked the term Tertiary, but they are what I gave as "sort of primary" above.

After the 2000 re-write, the IRB took on responsibility for the law book, and they dropped the classification. A pity, I think.

ex-lucy
03-11-05, 16:11
some more good advice .... best practice ... or hints and tips ....?

Mike Whittaker
03-11-05, 16:11
Whistle, signal, communicate!

Some signals tell what is going to happen, and the others tell you why. Logical? :)

jboulet4648
03-11-05, 19:11
Whistle, signal, communicate!

Some signals tell what is going to happen, and the others tell you why. Logical? :)

The first piece of coaching ever given to me was that sequence. It was drilled into me to always get my signals clear and in that order, and I am a better ref for it. It took about 20 matches or so to get in order but now its second nature. The minute I blow the whistle (the tone of the whistle is imprtant as well for scrum vs penalty infringement) my arm is either out to the side or up in the air.

I think, and not only because it is a strong point in a match, but proper signaling adds to the professionalism of a ref. Nice clear slow pronounced signals have the appearance of making the ref look like he is in charge. The sidelines most of the time do not hear what is coming out of the refs mouth.

The trickiest situation where I sometimes regress is ball held up in in-goal. Instead of putting my arm out to the side, I sometimes give the secondary, held up signal first. Its a habit I am trying to break.

The secondary I was told that may work for hitting a player in the air is having your forearm extending out in front of you vertical, and moving it upwards, and punching the forearm with your opposite fist.

ExHookah
07-11-05, 14:11
The trickiest situation where I sometimes regress is ball held up in in-goal. Instead of putting my arm out to the side, I sometimes give the secondary, held up signal first. Its a habit I am trying to break.




I actually think in a situation like that, the tension is such that you are probably best off giving the held up signal first, as many teams will assume anything else means you are giving the try. I know it goes against the typical order of signalling, but in that situation I think it could work. Of course the players are the ones right there, so maybe signal the scrum, verbally tell the players held up, and then when they are forming the scrum you can give the held up signal for the sidelines.

Davet
08-11-05, 13:11
I feel that the held up signal first in this case is by far the best option - it makes it instantly clear what has happened and defuses a tense situation. That is then followd by the arm out to the attacking side indictation the scrum, together with appropriate verbal communication to the players.The walk back to the 5m for the scrum follows only after all of the players have got up and no one has smacked anyone else.

It may be that some advisors would disagree, I would welcome their views - and would be happy to debate the point. I trust that most modern advisors, and refs, are not dogmatic about these things - and recognise that rugby is a complex game and simple one size fits all techniques are not necessarily the best solutions.

Mike Whittaker
08-11-05, 16:11
Speaking pesonally Davet the prime requirement from my point of view is for the ref to be clear and effective in his decision making and the communication of that decision. For colts and other county league matches (level 9 and below) I would be happy with any ref who demonstrated the above throughout the game when assessing 'communication' as an element. This in itself is a significant challenge for any ref in the early stages of his development, say the first couple of years. Some never master it and others, more experienced, forget it.

Moving on a stage I would introduce the word 'consistency' in the assessment of communication. And the higher you go the more important this becomes. Whilst I would be hesitant to comment to any ref on one such example of explanation before decision I would certainly do so if repeated and at level 6 or above along the lines of it being something he should be aware of and which could well be frowned on.

I try not to tell any refereee what he should or should not do, that is his decision. I can indicate the consequences though....
Are you now happy as to what your own priorities should be? :)

Account Deleted
08-11-05, 22:11
Some really good stuff in this thread. Thanks to all who have offered their input. My own signal / decision pattern does not seem quite so bad after reading the time scales that Mike refers to. Also I'm glad that I had not missed a new law relating toi the SH returning to the scrum.

Deeps
08-11-05, 23:11
I had some good advice from a senior Hampshire referee who performs his signals slowly and deliberately to the point of exaggeration, as if acting on a stage. The advice was to give signals 'in your time, not players' time' and clearly enough so that the dog can explain it to the other occupant of the touchline.

Brian Ravenhill
09-11-05, 12:11
When I started refereeing my signals came very quickly, Knock on by blue, scrum red. Then got the order correct. Scrum red, knock on by blue. Then an assessor advised me to slow it all down as it looked hurried and confused. Scrum red. ... ... knock on by blue. But now several years on being advised to speed it all up as the game has sped up especially at penalty time with the non-offending team wanting to take the quick ones to gain the extra ten meters, and thatís all they are doing it for because the defences although not having the time to be back ten are organised.

Davet
09-11-05, 13:11
Moving on a stage I would introduce the word 'consistency' in the assessment of communication.

Mike - I take the point. I also fully appreciate the need to give the primary signal first in most circumstances. It clarifies what is to happen, and then the explanation can follow - it is especially important in penalty and free kick offences where the opposition must be encouraged to get back 10 immediately, and the others allowed to get on quickly with whatever they decide to do.

I do think - and again this is in the spirit of debate - that scrum offences can be handled slightly differently. For one thing it is quite likely that the ref has been playing advantage, and the arm may well be out to indicate this. The scrum signal is not very different from the advantage signal (unlike FK or Penalty signals) and players may not appreciate that the arm out now means scrum whereas a second earlier a very similar looking signal merely meant advantage. Secondly there is no "quick scrum" option, and players are not required to retire immediately.

In light of this I do think there is a case to be made for the held-up signal, and perhaps other scrum offence secondaries being made before the actual scrum signal. It can aid players understanding of what is going on rather than hinder it - and although consistency can aid communication it is not the primary aid. Simply going for consistency as an end in itself could actually be counter-productive.

Though at level 6 and above I bow to experience.

OB..
09-11-05, 14:11
Davet - I agree. Earlier I pointed out that what I described initially as "41-46 are sort of primary as well" had been defined by the RFU as Tertiary. That included the "held up " signal.

The question is: "What is the most important information for the players?"
(Advisers, TV, spectators are a secondary consideration.)

They clearly need to know at once about penalties and free kicks, so that should be the first signal. In in-goal they need to know if the ball has been held up - not because it will affect their actions, but because that is their first question.

Giving the scrum signal first may seem less important, but the sequence should be done consistently, and it does tell them that an explanatory signal will follow.

Davet
09-11-05, 14:11
but the sequence should be done consistently,

I am proposing consistency - Penalty and FK offences primary first; Scrum offences explanation first. Ecah type of offence consistently relayed, in the sequence most helpful to the players in the circumstances and providing a management tool for the referee.

Blind consistency is the enemy of accurate communication - signals forced into a given box in order to fit "consistency" when they are better received and understood in a more natural manner.