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Sonny Bill Williams Makes Interesting Argument Against Rugby's New Tackle Law

Sonny Bill Williams Makes Interesting Argument Against Rugby's New Tackle Law
Gary Connaughton
By Gary Connaughton
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In recent years, rugby have made some major strides in minimising the amount of head injuries in the sport.

High tackles have been clamped down on in a major way, with such incidents regularly punished with red cards. However, the amount of such challenges that occur is still too high at the top level.

The RFU made another big move earlier this week. They announced that from next season, only tackles made below the waste will be legal in community rugby. It is expected that other national associations could follow suit in the near future.

The decision has caused concern among the English rugby community, with clubs feeling aggrieved that they were not consulted ahead of the change and that the move was too abrupt. The RFU has since apologised for the way it has been handled.

Sonny Bill Williams questions rugby's new tackle law

This latest changed could be a glimpse at the future of rugby. As law makers continue to attempt to reduce the frequency of head injuries, a sport which features minimal contact above waist height might be in the offing.

It would certainly the entire dynamic of the game and would meet huge resistance at all levels, including among professional players.

Sonny Bill Williams is one of the biggest names in rugby and he has already come out to confirm his stance on any such move.


Taking to Twitter, he shared the incident during which he suffered the biggest concussion over the course of his career. Interestingly, it actually involved him attempting a tackle below the waist on an opposition player.

He went on to share why he feels such a move could actually serve to increase head injuries moving forward.

For me not only does it completely change the way the game is played but also forcing a low tackle height in ALL in-game situations will only increase the head knocks…has anyone asked the elite players for their opinion?

To be honest all we want for our game is safety. The tackle I really think needs clamping down on is the reckless one where a player shoots out of the line to “put a shot on”.

I used to do this a lot and I know how dangerous this can be… did someone say the Lions?!

As he mentions above, Sonny Bill Williams has been guilty of some very dangerous tackles in the past. The incident against The Lions, for which he was sent off for back in 2017, was a nasty one.


That type of tackle is the one that has caused most of the issues in rugby, with dangerous, high velocity hits something that the authorities have clamped down on.

It will be interesting to see how much further they go in the years ahead.

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