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Can you set up a maul directly from the penalty?

Why do teams risk losing the ball at the line out or scrum when awarded a penalty close to the opposition try line. Could they not set up a driving maul directly from the penalty?ThanksAde Collingham

Hi Ade, there are no laws against trying to do that. A 'maul' is not technically formed until both teams are involved. From a penalty, an opposition defender could still make a 'tackle', whereas collapsing a maul is illegal. Moreover, without a maul technically formed there would be no offside line and a defender could just go around to the back and disrupt the ball. However, from 5m out it would seem pretty unstoppable. Maybe give it a try and see what happens! I would be interested to see what the ref does. I think professional teams can rely on their lineouts so it is easier to set up a maul from there. 

Check out the World Rugby Laws: https://laws.worldrugby.org/?law=16&language=EN

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