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Thread: Proposed Rule Changes......warranted or complete BS?

  1. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by barry View Post
    Contact below the knees is a contentious one, but absolutely required to prevent serious injury.

    Also, the pay the "hands in the back " consistently, but most people think it's "push in the back", and say where was the push?. So it's a terminology problem.
    Contact below the knees also suffers from a terminology problem....it should be 'sliding in knees or feet first' so players who bravely go in head first and are first to the ball are protected from this stupid rule and protected from head injury. The Hawks nearly stole the match from the more deserving Demons on the weekend, due to two shocking interpretations of this rule and in one case, Brayshaw was almost concussed but was penalised. Sheer madness! This wouldn't have happened if the rule was restricted to 'going in feet/knees first'. Any rule which rewards a player for being second to the ball or someone who just feigns being tripped or someone who potentially injures the player who is first to the ball.....is a stupid rule. The rule is not achieving what it was brought in for and one's brain is far more important than one's leg!

  2. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevoswan View Post
    Contact below the knees also suffers from a terminology problem....it should be 'sliding in knees or feet first' so players who bravely go in head first and are first to the ball are protected from this stupid rule and protected from head injury. The Hawks nearly stole the match from the more deserving Demons on the weekend, due to two shocking interpretations of this rule and in one case, Brayshaw was almost concussed but was penalised. Sheer madness! This wouldn't have happened if the rule was restricted to 'going in feet/knees first'. Any rule which rewards a player for being second to the ball or someone who just feigns being tripped or someone who potentially injures the player who is first to the ball.....is a stupid rule. The rule is not achieving what it was brought in for and one's brain is far more important than one's leg!
    You and I have disagreed about this before and continue to so. It isn't, and never was, a "sliding rule". A rule against that - and not just a free kick rule, but a reportable offence rule - has been in the game far longer than the current "contact below the knees rule". Adam Goodes got himself suspended twice by sliding - once very reasonably because he went in feet first, the second time a tad unluckily because two players went to ground and slid towards a loose ball, knee first, and he arrived a split second later.

    The two incidents against the Demons were correct under the rule and it's a rule I continue to be in favour of. In both cases the Demons player chose to go to ground. The below-the-knees- contact occurred because they chose to go to ground. I admit that Gunston probably contributed to the contact to his legs but in the overwhelming majority of these frees, the player whose legs are taken out has no chance to stop, change direction or otherwise mitigate potentially serious injury to themselves.

    Exhibit A in the case for this rule is Daniel Hannebery, who might be a five time All-Australian by now had Easton Wood not clattered into his knees in the 2016 GF.

  3. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by stevoswan View Post
    Contact below the knees also suffers from a terminology problem....
    This is a rule introduced for the specific purpose of reducing specific injuries, and it seems to be working. And it is an easy to understand rule - don't dive in and make contact below the knees - clear for umpires, players and fans (but not commentators, apparently). Why would you change a rule like that?

    Diving on the ball in a congested situation is generally frowned on in Australian Football. It is dangerous, and usually results in an interruption to the flow of the game. It's not brave, it's stupid, and counter-productive. All the players know that. No excuses.

  4. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by chammond View Post
    This is a rule introduced for the specific purpose of reducing specific injuries, and it seems to be working. And it is an easy to understand rule - don't dive in and make contact below the knees - clear for umpires, players and fans (but not commentators, apparently). Why would you change a rule like that?

    Diving on the ball in a congested situation is generally frowned on in Australian Football. It is dangerous, and usually results in an interruption to the flow of the game. It's not brave, it's stupid, and counter-productive. All the players know that. No excuses.
    Well said.

  5. #29
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    The problem with removing the Hands in the Back rule is that I fear that players are now going to accentuate contact and dive forward even more than they do now...examples Rance and Ben Brown.

  6. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mel_C View Post
    The problem with removing the Hands in the Back rule is that I fear that players are now going to accentuate contact and dive forward even more than they do now...examples Rance and Ben Brown.
    Completely agree. And on the other hand, some players will actually get away with pushes. Are we not all crying out for the grey areas of interpretation to be removed? Yet they want to reintroduce one that just doesn't need to be reintroduced. Players have adapted very well to the no hands in the back rule.

  7. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by liz View Post
    Completely agree. And on the other hand, some players will actually get away with pushes. Are we not all crying out for the grey areas of interpretation to be removed? Yet they want to reintroduce one that just doesn't need to be reintroduced. Players have adapted very well to the no hands in the back rule.
    I agree with all of that. It's odd. The only explanation I can come up with is they want to disincentivise blocking/holding. I remember around the time of the Clarkson coffee, there was suggestion that the hands in the back rule (with the chopping of the arms rule) had made it really difficult for defenders and blocking had evolved to compensate.

  8. #32
    Regular in the Side Matty10's Avatar
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    It really seems farcical sometimes.

    The AFL brings in a rule only to then change it back after twelve years. No real reason offered for either decision. What a waste of time and effort in educating the players and public.

    The application of the rules is our biggest problem. All throughout the season there were games where rules were applied in a way that was different from everything else in the year. It is totally bizarre.

    The ridiculous suggestion that has been prominent in the media in the last few years is that everyone needs to watch the Friday night match to see the direction for the weekend. It is a complete farce.

    In our last game against Hawthorn any contact to the back of a player when disposing of the ball was deemed a free kick (for a push in the back). It hadn’t been applied that way all year, but was somehow deemed necessary in just our game. The rule was essentially forgotten the next week. Any reasonable person might ask why, but there never seems to be any serious attention paid or investigation into the cause.

  9. #33
    Regular in the Side Matty10's Avatar
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    Proposed Rule Changes......warranted or complete BS?

    Case study: contact below the knees.

    The chat about the two free kicks given against Melbourne players last weekend for contact below the knees is driving me mad. They were both free kicks according to the rules and should be.

    The commentary around this application of the rule is designed to see it repealed. Everyone keeps referencing the Rohan injury and saying it was a feet first issue and that these injuries don’t occur from other contact. Why is no one referencing the Hannebery injury in the 2016 GF? It is totally bizarre.

    Both incidents from last week were the result of players on their feet throwing themselves head first toward the ball while going to the ground. For a number of reasons this should be discouraged:

    1. The AFL wants to decrease congestion. Players jumping on the ball will add to the likelihood of the ball not being cleared. It is a desperate act by someone not in the best position to obtain possession.

    2. If the AFL wants to decrease the potential for head injuries, they should not be encouraging them by awarding free kicks for head high contact when caused by someone throwing their head into a contest. Brayshaw is wearing a helmet for crying out loud!

    3. The risk of a lower leg or knee injury is real and this rule, when applied, helps prevent them. The 2016 GF is the best example.

    Tonight’s commentary around this issue by Mark Robinson on AFL 360 was utterly bizarre. He suggested that in the Gunstan Lewis contest, Gunstan was not even going for the ball. Whateley was equally moronic in his suggestion that Burgoyne’s aim was to get the free kick in colliding with Brayshaw. They are both self-serving interpretations that belie the reality of each situation. Both Hawks players kept their feet, turned their bodies to protect themselves and went for the ball. Robinson even made the suggestion that Gunstan was not even reaching for the ball - a quick look at the replay reveals that he actually had both hands on the ball when contact was made.

    It is this sort of ill-informed commentary that creates noise for change when it is completely unnecessary and perhaps even undesirable.

  10. #34
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    Great post Matty10, I agree with you on all points on the contact-below-the-knees rule.

    Re the supposedly anti-congestion changes being floated, I dislike them all.

    The one area that I would like to see improved, but doesn’t seem to be in the current discussion, is the pile-up of players when a player is tackled to the ground and every player in the vicinity (both foe and friend) jumps on top. And then several of them hold down a player with one hand and wave the other hand ambitiously at the umpire (why do they do that??).

    And then the poor sod at the bottom of the pack is supposed to get a handball away! Most times it ends up with a ball up, sometimes a holding-the-ball free is paid depending on prior opportunity. The tactic certainly adds up to a congested & ugly maul.

    I don’t understand why more than one player is permitted to ‘tackle’ in those circumstances. Seems to me that several of the pack on top are technically ‘in the back’ anyway.

  11. #35
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    Re: the 'contact below the knees' rule.......I should have added going in side ways like Wood did to Hannebury should be penalised as well but front on as in the two incidents in the Hawks/Melb game......NO. I still struggle to understand people's mental block on this one.....

    You say "it is a desperate act"......well yeah!......or maybe we don't want to see desperate acts in a contact sport?

    You claim this rule lessens the chance of head injury......but seem to fail to realise what two people running full on at the ball and each other, with their heads 'out and proud' and choosing not "to go to ground", will more often than not result in. Get ready for a head clash epidemic.

    In the history of football up until Gary Rohans freak injury, it was never a problem and it hasn't been since and I highly doubt that kneejerk rule change has had anything to do with it.......it's a typical AFL over reaction to a 'one off' freak accident.......tweak it by all means, it can't remain in it's current form.

  12. #36
    Regular in the Side Matty10's Avatar
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    It would seem that a failing to realise something is a subjective viewpoint.

    Both Gunstan and Burgoyne turn their bodies, which is what players are taught to do in order to protect themselves. If two players arrive at the ball at the same time it is not desirous for them to run head-first into each other - that would almost certainly result in head clashes. Who is suggesting that? Nor should one be penalised for turning their body when their opponent does not, unless they are clearly second to the ball and could opt to tackle instead. That is rewarding someone for opting to receive high contact, which the AFL should continue to avoid.

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