Law discussion: Tackle in-goal?

This is a great clip (and eventual try) from the Stormers v Hurricanes game on Friday night. One reader has asked whether it was legal for Jordie Barrett to tackle Stormers No 8 Nizaam Carr as he was going for the ball. Here’s the clip:



So, was it legal? Here are the law references to help:

and the “field of play” is defined as:

So the law book is quite clear here in that tackle law only fully applies in the field of play, so while you can bring a ball carrier to ground in-goal, it doesn’t constitute a fully legally constituted tackle, where tackler and tackled player have responsibilities. This is consistent in the same way that you cant have a ruck. maul or scrum in in-goal. Therefore, there’s no offence and all participants in this clip are legal.

We actually don’t see a tackle here anyway, but a fair contest for a loose ball, which Barrett ends up winning legally and dots the ball down. Good try! And a good referral to the TMO, Glenn Newman!


  1. Of note is the fact that Jordie Barrett is apparently 1m 96 and the other two (of the four)brothers, Kane and Scott, are 1.94 and 197 respectively. Beaudon is 1m 87. As an Australian I look forward with pessimism to two Barretts in the All Blacks both possessing what is becoming an increasingly prized attribute – speed.

  2. Stormers player had the ball before being tackled by hurricanes player so all was legal.

  3. It looks like Carr took the ball in the field of play and Barrett started tackling him in the field of play.

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