Coming out of USAP’s defeat against Castres this Sunday evening as part of the 13th day of the Top 14, Perpignan coach Patrick Arlettaz is particularly upset. “He’s the best French referee but that was last season. I’m not sure he’s got the Oscar again this year“, he commented in a press conference via RMC. The technician believes that Romain Poite should grant a penalty to his team at the end of the game while it held the ball in the Castres camp. A kick that could have given the victory to the premises, led only 19-20 after the test of Chilachava a few minutes earlier. A test which provoked strong reactions in the stadium and which deserves to be analyzed in order to understand why it was validated .
– Is Chilachava tackled?
To answer this question, let’s look at the World Rugby definition.
Definition of tackle: “The method of holding a ball carrier and putting that player on the ground.”
Is Chilachava held in this action? The answer is clearly no. No USAP player managed to hold him down to take him down.
– Chilachava is not tackled, but can he get up without releasing the ball?
So Chilachava is not in a tackle situation. We must therefore not respect rule 14 “Tackle” but search rule 13 “Players on the ground in current play”:
The players, who go to the ground to pick up the ball or who go to the ground with the ball, must immediately: – Get up with the ball; Where
– Play (but not kick) the ball; Where
– Release the ball.
So according to rule 13 Chilachava could get up with the ball without releasing it. The CRC consultants and a lot of supporters were questioning about this action that we want to clarify!