Rugby Coaching Blog | Professional Rugby Advice & Coaching

How hard is too hard to play? by David Clarke
January 12, 2009, 9:59 am
Filed under: Dan Cottrell, Rugby News | Tags: , , ,

Icy rugby pitch

With a raft of games cancelled in the UK over the weekend, it brings into question when a game can be called off and at what stage it is too dangerous to play.

South Africa readers especially will know that hard grounds are a fact of rugby life and the players adapt. Is that so different to icy conditions?

There are a number of factors involved in making the decision to not play. The first must be the confidence of the teams to play on the surface presented to them. Those teams used to playing on hard grounds won’t mind a solid, flat surface.

However a rutted, uneven surface will not be acceptable.

Another test, and one that I have mentioned before, is the “fist and head” technique: Imagine your fist is a player’s head. Punch the ground. If your fist recoils with a sting then think how that might affect a player’s head.

The potential thaw as the hours pass will be another factor. Night games rarely thaw out, but a day game is more difficult to call. May be another blog reader will be able to help with the meteorological methods of telling what might happen to the ground.

Overall, it is very frustrating. Add to that I have just heard that a couple of players collapsed in a local game with hypothermia and we wonder whether global warming has reached our shores.


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