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Law 20 Penalty and Free Kick

Law 20 Penalty and Free kick

1. What are PKs and FKs awarded for?
Answer: To restart play after infringements.

Location of a Penalty or Free Kick
1. Apart from PKs and FK being taken only in the field of play and not within 5m of a goal-line, where are they taken?
•    While the ball is in play excluding – at the place of infringement
•    While the ball is dead – at the point where play would have restarted or if the place is on the touchline or within 15m of it, on the 15m line in line with that place; if play would have restarted with a drop out 22, the mark is anywhere on the 22m line.
•    Any infringement which takes place outside the playing area while the ball is in play – on the 15m line, in line with where the offence occurred in touch-in-goal or beyond the dead ball line, on the 5m line in line with the infringement, but not less than 15m from the touchline.
•    Any infringement in a lineout – 15m in from touch on the mark of touch
•    Offside at phase play – at the offending team’s offside line
•    Any subsequent infringement by the original team after the first PK or FK is awarded but before it is taken – advanced 10m from the original mark
•    Late charging the kicker – the opposition chooses at the place of infringement or where the ball landed or was next played but not within 15m of the touch line or closer than 5m from a goal-line, and if the ball hits a crossbar or goal post, where the ball lands.
•    Intentionally knocking or throwing the ball into touch – 15m infield from where the infringement occurred but not within 5m of a goal-line
•    Any infringement in-in-goal or within 5m of a goal-line – in the field of play, 5m from the goal line, in line with the infringement

2. What happens when the PK or FK is taken from the wrong place?
Answer: it is taken again.

Options at a Penalty or Free Kick
1. Can a team opt for a scrum in lieu of a PK or FK?
Answer: Yes.

2. For a PK or FK awarded at a lineout, what options does the non-offending team have instead of taking a PK or FK.?
Answer: Scrum or lineout.

Taking A Penalty or Free Kick
1. Can the taking of a PK or FK be delayed?
Answer: No.

2. Can any player of the non-offending team take a PK or FK?
Answer: Yes, except for a FK awarded for a mark.

3. Must the same ball be used at a PK or FK that was in play at the time of the infringement?
Answer: Yes, unless the referee deems it to be defective.

4. How can the ball be kicked at PK or FK?
Answer: With either a punt, drop kick or place kick (other than for touch).

  • DSLV: When taking a place kick for goal, a kicking tee is compulsory for all levels of NZ domestic rugby.

5. May the ball be kicked in any direction?
Answer: Yes.

6. Must the kicker’s teammates remain behind the ball until it is kicked?
Answer: Yes, unless it is the placer at a place kick.

7. Must the ball be kicked a visible distance?
Answer: Yes and if the kicker is holding it, the ball must be kicked out of the hands.

Opposing Team at a Penalty or Free Kick
1. Where must the opposition be at a PK or FK?
Answer: At least 10m back from the mark or their goal-line if that is closer.

2. What must opposition players do if the PK or FK is taken quickly?
Answer: Keep retreating the necessary distance.

3. What should happen if the kick is taken so quickly the opposition do not have an opportunity to retreat 10m?
Answer: They won’t be sanctioned as long as they do not take part in the game until they have retreated 10m or have been put onside by an onside team-mate.

4. What should the referee rule if the opposing team obstruct or delay the taking of a PK or FK?
Answer: Advance the mark 10m but the kick cannot be taken until the referee has made the mark.

Opposing Team at a Free Kick
1. When may the opposition move to prevent a FK being taken?
Answer: As soon as the kicker initiates movement to kick.

2. What should the referee rule if at a FK the kick a charge prevents the kick from being taken?
Answer: Scrum to the non-kicking team.