Mauling back for Lions series

The IRB has scrapped collapsing of the maul but has approved 10 of the 13 ELVs.

This means from 23 May both hemispheres will play under the same rules, except for the completion of the Top 14 and Super 14 competitions. But for all the mid-year tours, including the British & Irish Lions series, the approved laws will be used.

Three of the trialed ELVs have been scrapped, including collapsing the maul, unlimited numbers at the lineout, and the requirement of head above hips when entering a maul. Under the hybrid ELVs most sanctions were free-kicks instead of penalties but this has also got the boot.

At the IRB Council meeting in Dublin on Wednesday it was announced the ELVs are now something of the past.

‘Today’s announcement brings to an end the extensive global ELV consultation and evaluation process which began with the conference on the game in Auckland in January 2004,’ said IRB chairman Bernard Lapasset. ‘The IRB would like to sincerely thank its member unions for their participation in what has been an unprecedented review of the laws of the game.’

The following ELVs are to be adopted into law:

Law 6: Assistant referees able to assist referees in any way the referee requires.

Law 19: If a team puts the ball back in their own 22 and the ball is subsequently kicked directly into touch there is no gain in ground.

Law 19: A quick throw may be thrown in straight or towards the throwing team’s goal line.

Law 19: The receiver at the line-out must be two metres back away from the line-out.

Law 19: The player who is in opposition to the player throwing in the ball must stand in the area between the five-metre line and touch line and must be two metres from the line of touch and at least two metres from the line-out.

Law 19: Line-out players may pre-grip a jumper before the ball is thrown in.

Law 19: The lifting of line-out jumpers is permitted.

Law 20: Introduction of an offside line five metres behind the hindmost feet of the scrum.

Law 20: Scrumhalf offside line at the scrum.

Law 20: The corner posts are no longer considered to be touch in goal except when the ball is grounded against the post .

Some unions will be allowed to introduce the following variations:

1. Rolling substitutions at defined levels of the Game.

2. A  half-time of not more than 15 minutes, but not at international level.

3. The U19 Scrum Law Variation at a defined level of the Game.