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Lancaster seeks law changes

Mon, 20 Jan 2014 18:39
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Supporters are the lifeblood of the game

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England coach Stuart Lancaster has called for changes to the laws that would make the game more appealing to spectators ahead of the 2015 World Cup.

Lancaster intimated that simpler scrum laws and the prevention of time wasted by collapsed scrums would make the game more attractive and possibly draw new fans.

"I want to encourage everyone involved in the making of the laws and the structure of the game to try and make it as good a spectator sport as humanly possible," Lancaster told the Guardian.

"I've definitely got empathy with those suggesting we stop the clock when there are collapsed scrums - or phases of play when there is not a lot happening - so that spectators get more value for money."

Lancaster said that the Six Nations could also benefit from the introduction of a bonus point system that rewards positive, attacking rugby.     

"History would say it [the Six Nations] has been a pretty effective tournament without them [bonus points] and it's not really a decision for me as a national coach but I'd be reasonably open-minded about things like that."

He added that England's success as World Cup hosts next year will be vital to the development of the game in the country.

"For me one of the biggest motivations for England being successful is the impact it would have on grassroots rugby.

"It's about trying to give the country a team people can really centre around and support, which will go way beyond 2015.

"Supporters are the lifeblood of the game and the people playing it, including kids, also have to enjoy it. You want something to get behind and sometimes the complexity of rugby's rules or its stop-start nature can take that away.

"If a kid doesn't particularly enjoy getting smashed by someone twice their size, there could either be weight categories or tag rugby for older ages. I want as many kids to play the game as possible."

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