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Refereeeing an U10 ruck

As well as coaching U10 rugby, I also get to referee U10 games, under the New Rules Of Play. I feel that my refereeing of the ruck isn't as good as it could/should be. Has anyone got an easy to follow system to help them referee U10 rucks ?

So for me, rucks in general:

Q1: Is it a ruck? A “ruck” is formed when 1 or more player(s) from each team, are on their feet,
in physical contact and close around the ball on the ground.

If the answer to the above is yes, shout 'ruck'.

Q2: Numbers?  Make sure you don't go over the number limit for your age grade. Currently in the UK  for U10's this is a 1 vs 1 contest.  Personally I shout "Numbers Team X" if a team looks like they are about to infringe.

Q3: Is it available? 5 second rule and shout 'Use it'.

Q4: Common foul play? Going off your feet, Charging into the ruck, Hands in the ruck. Watch for offside/loitering/coming in at the side.

Q5: Age grade specifics: for U10's in the UK this includes that the SH must pass the ball from the back of the ruck.

Q6: Is the ruck over - success? Is the ball out of the ruck? Or has the SH lifted the ball from the floor?

If the answer to this last question is yes, we are all good and we play on :)

Q7: Is the ruck over - fail?  Is the ball stuck in the ruck, who is going forward, who is the attacking team, who gets the put in at the resulting scrum?

This is pretty much what goes through my head in this sittuation, hope it helps.



That helps enormously.  However...

A season has moved on and I'm now starting U11 refereeing.  It will follow the same as above, teh main difference being ball carrier +2, / tackler+2

Anthony gives a very good answer for the U10.

The only additional clarification is where the rules say:-

If the ball is not made available from a mini-maul a scrum should be awarded to the defending team.

Where the ball is not made available from a mini-ruck the scrum should be awarded to the attacking team.

So 'going forward' is not meant to be a factor - but i can't square this in my mind as fair or reasonable.

@Paul: Yes, exactly. It is where I am now too :) Good luck for the season!

@Eamonn: Oh yes, forgot that for U10's.  Interestingly that statement has been removed from the U11's rules as far as I can see, so I assume we revert to IRB rules & regs.



To clarify Q5 is incorrect, you can pick and go or Pass. 

You cannot pick and go off the back of a scrum. 

U10's rules are:

When the tackle is made and the ball carrier is on the ground, ONE supporting player may join from their own side (ie from the direction of their own try line)

i. Drive over the ball, taking their immediate opponent away from the ball

ii. Pick up the ball and pass away from the contact area

iii. Pick up the ball and run

@Craig, that is not right.  You have missed out this important bit of that rule:

Once l) i above has taken place, the next arriving player acting as scrum half must pass the ball to another player



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