RFL decide not to outlaw controversial shoulder charge technique

SHOULDER charges will continue to be deemed legal in all Rugby Football League (RFL) run competitions until the Rugby League International Federation (RLIF) concludes its own consultation on the technique.

The NRL in Australia banned the technique for next season but the RFL will follow the lead of the RLIF on the matter, meaning the shoulder charge is set to be legal at the start of 2013 competitions.

The technique currently remains legal under international rules and will remain so in domestic competitions including Super League, Championships, Challenge Cup and community leagues, pending the completion of the RLIF consultation process.

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RFL Laws Committee Secretary Blake Solly said: “The RFL Laws Committee has renewed its commitment to standardising the laws of the game across all nations and competitions wherever possible, and noted that this process is underway within the RLIF at the moment.

“The RLIF has proposed standardising a number of the laws of the game, including the use of the shoulder charge, and we are in the process of responding to these proposals. We believe that this process is an important way of reducing the number of differences in the laws across the various nations and enhancing the credibility of the sport.

“To that extent we will assist the RLIF as they discuss the topic in coming months and will support any decision they make.”

The RFL has consulted rugby league players, coaches and clubs on the matter and the consultations helped form a decision not to outlaw the technique.

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“Having concluded our own consultation with players, clubs and coaches, the Laws Committee have considered the key findings of both the Australian Rugby League Commission’s recent report and the consultation process,” added Solly.

“A decision was reached not to outlaw the shoulder charge for competitions at this stage but to await the outcome of the RLIF’s consultation.

“I would like to thank the players, coaches and clubs for their enthusiastic participation in the consultation.”

See this week’s Wakefield Express for all the latest sports news from around the district.