Three rule changes that would benefit Super League in 2023

With the 2022 season now complete, we take a look at some new or revamped rules which could be introduced to Super League next season to improve the product even more.

The match officials have a difficult job managing the game with so many incidents to control over an 80 minute fixture, we believe these rule changes would make the job of the referee easier during the course of the 2023 season.

Captains Challenge

Although this concept wasn’t fully accepted during the most recent World Cup, it is a rule which has been implemented to a good degree of success over in the NRL. as fans we all like to complain when the referee gets a decisions wrong, which can happen as they are only human, introducing the six again rule would allow teams to question any decisions they deem to be wrong. By allowing teams a single captains challenge it would eliminate some of the controversial decisions seen in Super League in the past. The only issue with this rule is the need for a video referee to be available for every fixture which currently isn’t the case as only televised games allow for video assistance. Although this rule change may not happen in 2023, it is something the RFL may look at introducing in the near future.

No “Six Again” Calls inside oppositions 20m 

The “six again” rule is another controversial new law which fans haven’t fully taken too. Although it speeds the game up, referees seem inconsistent with implementing the rule and this leaves fans frustrated as to why their team has been penalised. One of the biggest issues is defending teams using the law to their advantage to slow down an attacking team to allow themselves to get back into shape, often without any other punishment. Also, if teams are down by two points with time running out, a penalty close to the sticks is much more beneficial to the attacking team than a six again call. A recent example of this happened in the World Cup quarter final between Tonga and Samoa, The Tongans were awarded a six again rather than a penalty and ended up losing the game by two points.

Getting rid of seven tackle sets from set restarts

With how tight the game can be at times, this is a rule which needs to be altered to give the receiving team less of an advantage from a slight error. A slightly over hit kick can wipe out all sorts of pressure built up by an attacking team and allows the defending team an easy escape route which hasn’t been earnt. a six tackle set from the 20m line is still a big advantage after defending but still gives the team who gave away the penalty a chance to control field position.

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