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TheBFG
20-08-09, 14:08
Gents/ladies

A spot of advice if you could………?
As I didn’t have to worry about numbers in the LO last season (my first as a ref) this is something I guess I will have to manage this year.

When I was playing, refs took different approaches, some would insist that the front guy called numbers (1 out 2 out, 3 in etc……) where as others would simply let the sides get on with it and ping it if they spotted it (usually after a shout of “numbers ref!”). I have to admit I’m not a fan of trying to catch teams out and would prefer to give the non-throwing side the chance to even up?

What is your preferred approach?

Adam
20-08-09, 15:08
It irritated me the season before last (my first!) so I'm contemplating a different approach this season. The teams each nominate someone (front guy) to call the numbers in the LO and that's all they are allowed. This may prevent the irritating chopping and changing which makes it harder for us referees!

What do you guys think?

Dixie
20-08-09, 15:08
It irritated me the season before last (my first!) so I'm contemplating a different approach this season. The teams each nominate someone (front guy) to call the numbers in the LO and that's all they are allowed. This may prevent the irritating chopping and changing which makes it harder for us referees!

What do you guys think? I think teams expect to be able to earn a FK through the inattention of the oppo. If you deny them that right, they'll want to know where you derive your authority to require them to tell the oppo how many to put in. I suspect you may find that quite challenging - though some refs I know would consider that a minor downside compared to the upside of not having people bleating about "numbers, Sir" at every lineout.

FlipFlop
20-08-09, 15:08
I ask the teams at teh start for the "standard" length lineout.

I then tell them that if they CHANGE from that, they must inform me. I let them know that failing to inform me MAY result in me failing to count - especially if they reduce numbers. Never had a problem with teams not wanting to tell me, once I've explained that bit!

A team should not be able to buy a cheap FK - the idea of shortening a lineout is to gain a tactical advantage. Not to catch the oppo out.

TheBFG
20-08-09, 15:08
I ask the teams at teh start for the "standard" length lineout.

I then tell them that if they CHANGE from that, they must inform me. I let them know that failing to inform me MAY result in me failing to count - especially if they reduce numbers. Never had a problem with teams not wanting to tell me, once I've explained that bit!

A team should not be able to buy a cheap FK - the idea of shortening a lineout is to gain a tactical advantage. Not to catch the oppo out.

I'm with that man!:clap:

DrSTU
20-08-09, 17:08
I suspect that the return of the lineout mingle might return. Just watch out for it (especially around your level)

Players approach the line of touch and mingle around pretending to form a lineout, you usually have to ask them if they are in or out? Some then dash away and someone shouts "numbers ref".

Don't fall for it, either reset and tell them that if they approach the lineout then they are in it or personally I FK them:

Law 19.8d
When the ball is in touch, every player who approaches the line of touch is presumed to do so to form a lineout. Players who approach the line of touch must do so without delay.
Players of either team must not leave the lineout once they have taken up a position in the lineout until the lineout has ended.
Penalty: Free Kick on the 15-metre line

ctrainor
20-08-09, 17:08
I can't beleive refs make teams tell them how many are in the line out.
A real kop out.
The non throwing team has a right by laws to be able to adjust their numbers and should do so but if they can't count, tough FK.

The BFG you will miss the occasional Numbers call, not a problem just say to skipper/pack leader, sorry mate missed it will keep looking.

SimonSmith
20-08-09, 18:08
I don't tell anyone anything.

What I do do is ask the front man on the non throwing team "happy with the numbers?"

That way, if there's a problem, it's not on me, it's on them.

ex-lucy
20-08-09, 19:08
I ask the teams at teh start for the "standard" length lineout.

I then tell them that if they CHANGE from that, they must inform me. I let them know that failing to inform me MAY result in me failing to count - especially if they reduce numbers. Never had a problem with teams not wanting to tell me, once I've explained that bit!

A team should not be able to buy a cheap FK - the idea of shortening a lineout is to gain a tactical advantage. Not to catch the oppo out.

might i suggest that you are naive ...
in light of Bloodgate and with my considerable experience, rugby has a lot of 'cheating' in it of many kinds .. call it gamesmanship if you like.
From dummy passing from back of mauls and scrums (now outlawed) to stamping to gouging to ball tampering .. offside behind refs' backs ... and coaches encourage it "if you can get away with it, then it isnt cheating.."

and 'gaining' a FK from a line out esp if under pressure in that set piece in own 22m is part of that culture of 'cheating'.
most teams i know go for a 3 man line out in theior own 22m w/out a call and quickly taken to take teh oppo by surprise .. they gain good quick ball and advantage. A Fk taken by a big kick to touch to take them 30/40m up field is worth the 'cheat'.
From my pov, i would award a FK, bec it is up to the oppo to count and be aware.
maybe it's bec i am an exprop .. and that is how i have been brought up.

KML1
20-08-09, 19:08
Dont forget that the defensive side can have less numbers, but not more than side throwing in, so it's not about having matching numbers necessarily.

The umpire
20-08-09, 20:08
and 'gaining' a FK from a line out esp if under pressure in that set piece in own 22m is part of that culture of 'cheating'.
most teams i know go for a 3 man line out in theior own 22m w/out a call and quickly taken to take teh oppo by surprise

No, it isn't! If they go for a 3 man quickly, then you don't give a FK as the oppos must have a chance to reduce their numbers.

In general, if an old fart like me can count them in then so can the oppos.

TheBFG
21-08-09, 09:08
To be honest if the non-throwing team put 7 in against 3 then they deserve to be pinged!

OB..
21-08-09, 10:08
To be honest if the non-throwing team put 7 in against 3 then they deserve to be pinged!
What usually happens is that the non-throwing team puts in its usual 7, then the other team decides to put in only 5 or 6, hoping the difference will not be noticed except by the referee.

upnunder
21-08-09, 11:08
you usually look up and see a No 8 trying to hide behind the Fly half

ex-lucy
21-08-09, 14:08
No, it isn't! If they go for a 3 man quickly, then you don't give a FK as the oppos must have a chance to reduce their numbers.

In general, if an old fart like me can count them in then so can the oppos.

disagree

Phil E
21-08-09, 15:08
I don't (can't) count.

Once the line is set, as I step away from it I just match up each line of players against each other.

So from the attacking side I see front pod of 3, matching pod on defensive side.

Then 1 player on his own, match him up against the next player on the defence.

If I get to the back of the line and I have a defence player I can't match - peep.

It takes just a second, you just see a pattern in your mind and match it.

This is done before the ball is thrown in, while the thrower is still lining his throw up, or making the call.

Last season with numbers; I think I had to penalise once.

Donal1988
21-08-09, 23:08
Saw a great try scored by a 3 man lineout v a 3 man lineout last night. It was great to see. Didnt see anything like it all last season. To be honest before I read this thread yesterday morning I had forgotton about the matching numbers being back. Thanks for posting BFG :rolleyes:

Will.Q
23-08-09, 22:08
I can't beleive refs make teams tell them how many are in the line out.
A real kop out.
The non throwing team has a right by laws to be able to adjust their numbers and should do so but if they can't count, tough FK.

The BFG you will miss the occasional Numbers call, not a problem just say to skipper/pack leader, sorry mate missed it will keep looking.


Why not? Do you enjoy giving cheap FK's?

Surely managing the situation and blowing your whistle a little less is the preferable option? Having more in the line out, for my money, does not often result in them getting an advantage and, if they don't, then why blow your whistle as oppose to a quick chat at the next line out "watch your numbers chaps please."

Each man to his own but personally I like to have less hassle, rather than more. I have a quick count - if all in, I say nothing. If the side chucking it in have less, I will always ask them to tell me their number and I will always allow the oppo to drop. If the oppo then don't drop, and having more in the line gives then an advantage once the ball is in, then I'll blow. That rarely happens though, because I've managed it.

Game over.

Dickie E
24-08-09, 00:08
I take a middle line.

If I see there is a numbers issue I'll tell the non-throwers that they have a problem and to check their numbers. That is enough of a clue as far as I'm concerned.

Ian_Cook
24-08-09, 05:08
I'd like to see numbers dispensed with altogether, and see the Law changed back to the way it used to be prior to 1982.

The team throwing in sets the length of the line-out by the position of their last (infield most) player, so

► if the last man in the throwing-in team's five-man lineout is 10m from touch, the opposition can have as many players as they like between the 5m and the last opponent; the more they try to put in, the more cramped they will be.

► if the throwing team throw the ball long past the last player, the opposing player is allowed to follow the ball.

► the line-out ends if the ball goes past the 15m line (so backs can only advance then on a long throw)

It was simple and easy to manage. You just made sure all the players were between 5m line and the last player of the throwing team. If teams wanted to limit their opponents numbers, they just shortened up the line-out to make it uncomfortable or difficult for them. We didn't have lifting or supporting then (unless you played in South Africa :D ) but I bet would work a treat with that as well.

Can't understand why they ever changed this Law.

FlipFlop
24-08-09, 08:08
Ian,

what happens if the "Guy at teh back" is moving around? Where is the "back of the line"?

I'm happy with numbers. It's easy to manage (however you do it), promotes a fair competition for the ball, and yet still allows tactical choice by the throwing in side.

ctrainor
24-08-09, 10:08
Why not? Do you enjoy giving cheap FK's?

Surely managing the situation and blowing your whistle a little less is the preferable option? Having more in the line out, for my money, does not often result in them getting an advantage and, if they don't, then why blow your whistle as oppose to a quick chat at the next line out "watch your numbers chaps please."

Each man to his own but personally I like to have less hassle, rather than more. I have a quick count - if all in, I say nothing. If the side chucking it in have less, I will always ask them to tell me their number and I will always allow the oppo to drop. If the oppo then don't drop, and having more in the line gives then an advantage once the ball is in, then I'll blow. That rarely happens though, because I've managed it.

Game over.

Will Q, I don't always blow my whistle, hand is out for FK advantage and see what happens.
Had a few instances in my first game saturday and talked to the players in the first few lines out before any sanctions.
visitors gave a few away as they couldn't sort themselves out. home team much more street wise but i did penalise them for trying to draw FK by dropping out late or standing in no mans land.
I managed it!!

Davet
24-08-09, 10:08
Generally, and each incident can be different, but generally, I always took the view that if the side with extra numbers win the ball against the throw, then ping 'em, if the throwing side win the ball and move it then "advantage over", they have posession and an overlap, clear tactical advantage.

Taff
25-08-09, 11:08
... I always took the view that if the side with extra numbers win the ball against the throw, then ping 'em, if the throwing side win the ball and move it then "advantage over", they have posession and an overlap, clear tactical advantage.Sounds reasonable to me. This will be my first season, so a general question for the experienced ones here. Would it be in order to ask the throwing in hooker to wait until I've finished counting? In theory pairing up players is all well and good, but in practice, when they all shuffle about and seem to merge into 1 (perhaps deliberately) I can see a problem if the hooker tries to chuck it in quickly to try and get a FK. :(

OB..
25-08-09, 11:08
My view is that the FK is intended to allow the throwing team to control the size of the lineout and therefore prevent the defending side from cheating by putting in extra players. It is not intended to provide a cheap FK by fooling the opponents.

If the hooker throws in quickly before you can check the numbers, tough luck. You did not see an offence, so you cannot penalise one. You would be wrong simply to accept their version of events.

Dixie
25-08-09, 12:08
This will be my first season, ... when they all shuffle about and seem to merge into 1 (perhaps deliberately) I can see a problem if the hooker tries to chuck it in quickly to try and get a FK. :( If you are assigned beginner-level games, I doubt you'll see any line-dancing. That sort of nonsense requires premeditation and practice; at the lower levels, both of those criteria are thankfully lacking.

David J.
25-08-09, 14:08
If the hooker throws in quickly before you can check the numbers, tough luck. You did not see an offence, so you cannot penalise one. You would be wrong simply to accept their version of events.

This seems sensible. If they don't give the ref time to count, how can the defense? And of course, if you don't seem it, you can't penalize it.

ddjamo
25-08-09, 22:08
often the defending side by having more in are disadvantaged if the ball is out quick. most of the levels I see they cannot maul to save their lives...so an extra guy is meaningless. I really need to be convinced to FK numbers. I think managing and a word with the skipper at the next stoppage is best. also, I refuse to blow the whistle if there is a coach or fan behind the thrower yelling, "numbers ref". I won't let them think they have my ear....right or wrong - just won't give in...would rather manage it.

Dixie
26-08-09, 09:08
often the defending side by having more in are disadvantaged if the ball is out quick. most of the levels I see they cannot maul to save their lives...so an extra guy is meaningless. Not so. Throwing side put in 6, you put in 7. Catch at #2, maul. You commit 6 to the maul (so 6 each). Your 7th man's offside line is the back foot of the maul, and he can stand 14m in - directly opposite the fly half. He is thus 8m closer to the attacking fly half than he has any right to be (8m! stride it out to check that distance, if you have the room). The resulting pressure on the 10/12 channel is clearly material and adversely affects the game, but if you don't FK the numbers, there is no offence on which to hang your hat, assuming the 7th forward remains onside.

Davet
26-08-09, 12:08
If the ball throwers win the throw and maul it, then fine numbers is material, ping it.

If they move it wide then advantage would be over fairly quickly.

ddjamo
26-08-09, 15:08
Not so. Throwing side put in 6, you put in 7. Catch at #2, maul. You commit 6 to the maul (so 6 each). Your 7th man's offside line is the back foot of the maul, and he can stand 14m in - directly opposite the fly half. He is thus 8m closer to the attacking fly half than he has any right to be (8m! stride it out to check that distance, if you have the room). The resulting pressure on the 10/12 channel is clearly material and adversely affects the game, but if you don't FK the numbers, there is no offence on which to hang your hat, assuming the 7th forward remains onside.

point made for your scenario...over here we don't have as much tactical thinking like that...but good point to watch for higher levels.