Summer Nations Series to trial major new card system
The Six Nations-owned Summer Nations Series have confirmed that the tournament will feature a number of exciting innovations, including the use of the ‘TMO bunker’ process.
The tournament is set to commence on July 29th and run for five weekends.
One of the key innovations is the implementation of the ‘Bunker’ review process and Hawk-Eye technology across the series. These additions are aimed – according to a statement released this lunchtime – at supporting referees and match officials in their decision-making processes while also promoting faster gameplay.
The introduction of the Bunker trial aligns with the sport’s ambition to explore its future application and provide extra support to match officials. During the trial, referees will retain their role as the primary decision-makers, but they will have the option to refer any unclear foul play incidents to a dedicated ‘Foul Play Review Officer’ (FPRO) located within the Bunker.
If a red card decision is not evident after two video replays, the FPRO will have up to 8 minutes to review the incident using all available technology and footage to make a determination.
RugbyPass understands that the bunker approach is also set to be used at the upcoming Rugby World Cup in France.
Additionally, Hawk-Eye technology will serve as the independent video replay operator, offering support to referees and enhancing the accuracy of decision-making during matches.
For fans attending the games in the stadiums or watching from home, the shot clock, ref cam, and smart ball match data, presented by Sage, will enhance their match-day experience.
The shot clock, which successfully featured during this year’s Six Nations, will provide players with 90 seconds to take a conversion and 60 seconds for a penalty kick, with the countdown displayed on screens in the stadiums and broadcast coverage. This innovation aims to provide players with accurate information while adding to the excitement for the fans throughout the games.
The reintroduction of ref cam is another fan-focused decision. By utilizing the latest technology and equipment, ref cam will offer broadcasters access to new angles and perspectives from live games, bringing fans even closer to the action.