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Richie McCaw's law change suggestion proves popular with fans

By Josh Raisey
Referee Nigel Owens talks to Ireland's Brian O'Driscoll and New Zealand's Richie McCaw during a June 2012 game in Christchurch (Photo by Martin Hunter/Getty Images)

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An interview with two-time World Cup-winning captain Richie McCaw was recently shared on the Rugby World Cup’s social media pages where he answered questions from fans.


These included revealing the best player he came up against in his career, Geoge Smith, to what he thought of Faf de Klerk’s hair. However, he was also asked what changes he would make to rugby currently – and he responded by suggesting the clock should be stopped for scrums.

The legendary flanker said that “a scrum can eat up a lot of time in the game” so stopping the clock until the ball is fed would alleviate such a problem.

This suggestion has proven to be popular among fans, as this has been an area of concern for many over the years.

All too frequently reset scrums can consume a huge amount of time on a clock and while there have been many law changes to make scrums less susceptible to collapse, there is still room for improvement.

(Continue reading below…)

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Perhaps the most agonising part of the game is when a scrum is awarded in the final few minutes of a match, as it often ends the contest prematurely with the ball never escaping after a series of interventions from the referee.


McCaw’s amendment is not without its criticism, however, as some feel that this would lengthen games considerably. While there would obviously be more ball in play time, it is not inconceivable to say that matches would be 20 minutes or longer. On wetter days where errors are more likely, this could rise even more.

Of course, this is not a foolproof idea by McCaw, as he was ultimately only given a short period of time to think of an answer. But he has nonetheless raised an issue that concerns a vast number of rugby fans, and something that many want to see addressed.

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Richie McCaw's law change suggestion proves popular with fans