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Clarification 2014 - 5

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Ruling 5-2014
Union / HP Ref Manager RFU
Law Reference 6
Date 8 October 2014
 
Request

Law 6 – Law Amendment Trial – HIA Protocol

The RFU requested clarification relating to the operation of the HIA protocol which we set out below:

1. Early notification of player not returning following HIA
Under the TMO protocols the temporary replacement for a player undergoing an HIA cannot kick for goal. If the player undergoing assessment does not return within ten minutes, the temporary replacement becomes permanent and the replacement is then permitted to kick for goal. If the fourth official is notified within ten minutes that the player has been assessed will not be returning, can the replacement then kick for goal before the ten minutes has elapsed?

2. Temporary replacement sent off
Our understanding is that if the replacement player is sent off then the player having an HIA assessment is not permitted to play any further part in the game i.e. he cannot act as a replacement for another player.

If this is correct then a red card issued to a player whilst he is acting as a temporary replacement potentially prevents two members of that team from participating further in the game; this does not seem equitable and is contrary to what is permitted if a front row player is temporarily replaced and his replacement is sent off. Is our understanding correct?

3. Player passes the HIA and does not return
It is our understanding that a player who has previously been tactically replaced can act as a temporary replacement for a player undergoing an HIA assessment.

If a player fails an HIA it is clear from the protocol that the temporary replacement becomes permanent even in the circumstance where the temporary replacement had previously been tactically replaced.

What is not clear it what happens if the player does not fail the HIA, does not present for return within ten minutes and the temporary replacement had previously been tactically replaced ie the temporary replacement was not eligible to return to the game other than as a replacement for a player undergoing an HIA or a player having bleeding controlled.

What should happen if a player who has not failed an HIA does not present himself to return within the ten minutes specified; does the temporary replacement become permanent in all circumstances? This is not an issue if the temporary replacement was an unused replacement, but becomes an issue if the temporary replacement had himself previously been tactically substituted.

 
 
Clarification in Law by the Designated Members of the Rugby Committee
1. If the fourth official is notified that a player who has undergone a HIA will not be returning, then the replacement can kick for goal before the ten minutes has elapsed.

2. Understanding is incorrect. If a HIA temporary replacement is sent off then the player having an HIA assessment is permitted to take further part in the game (as long as he/ she passes the HIA) i.e. The HIA assessed player can act as a replacement for another player.

3. If a player passes the HIA he must return to play and the temporary replacement withdrawn.