Worldwide ban for shoulder charge

The shoulder charge in rugby league is set to be banned worldwide

The shoulder charge in rugby league is set to be banned worldwide

First published in National Sport © by

The Rugby League International Federation has confirmed the shoulder charge will be banned worldwide, starting with Friday's World Club Challenge in Leeds and taking in the 2013 World Cup.

The Australian Rugby League Commission outlawed the controversial tackle at the end of last year while New Zealand already had a ban in place in its domestic competition, but the Rugby Football League decided to retain it until a full consultation process had been undertaken.

However, the International Federation on Monday night agreed to extend the ban worldwide and the RFL are expected to announce its introduction into the domestic game.

The RFL could opt to delay the move until the end of the season but are more likely to fall into line for the sake of uniformity and introduce the ban in Super League and the Championships from this weekend.

Opinion was divided among Super League coaches but Leeds boss Brian McDermott recently called for the shoulder charge to be banned after undergoing a change of heart.

"As we look forward to an incredibly exciting season for the game, culminating in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup, reviewing rules such as the shoulder charge is an important part of ensuring we have created the right environment for our players," RLIF chairman Scott Carter said.

"Player safety is a fundamental principle and the latest research and current trends show that the shoulder charge has the potential to create an unacceptable risk of injury for players."

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