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World Rugby publishes 'optional domestic law trials' to further reduce COVID-19 risk

Ireland have made 12 changes for their second game in the Rugby World Cup 2015

The World Rugby Executive Committee have approved 10 optional domestic law trials which are designed to provide national member unions with further COVID-19 transmission risk reduction measures if required.

Temporary law trials relating to the scrum, tackle, ruck and maul were approved along with a package of best-practice match hygiene measures. For a full break down see the images below. 

Each measure aims to reduce individual cumulative exposure to these contact activities, which are generally accepted as presenting the highest COVID-19 transmission risk.

Unions can apply to implement one or more of the temporary law amendments as domestic trials at elite or community levels on a needs-basis in line with the World Rugby return-to-play guidance published this month.

In addition to the on-field law and officiating interventions, a number of non-law hygiene measures are recommended for playing and training in line with WHO and World Rugby guidance:
Mandatory hand and face sanitisation pre- and post-match
Regular ball sanitisation before, during and after matches
Single user water bottles/hydration
Changing of jerseys, shorts and headgear at half-time where possible
Prevention of huddles and celebrations involving contact
Prevention of spitting and nose clearance

Recommended training measures
Forwards units: high risk transmission activity such as an eight-person scrum should be undertaken against machine to limit exposure, packs should be trained separately
Scrum and maul practice should take place at the end of a training session, preferably a day before a ‘down day’ to allow 24-48 hours before collective training
High transmission risk training should be avoided within 48 hours of a game

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