11 Apr 2012
Yellow, Red or White card? - A Rule Change Proposal for the IRB
The white card was introduced this year in the Super 15, to be given when an act of foul play has been suspected but neither the ref or assistant could determine the player responsible or whether the foul was befitting of a disciplinary healing. This introduction seems to have little impact though and given the recent musings about 'gamesmanship' after the Bulls eye gouging claims and players willing to simulate in order to put pressure on a ref and give a white card, perhaps the idea hasn't really worked.
I would propose that the white card was removed as an option. Instead yellow cards are given for all offences. The reason for this would be that the TMO would then have 10 minutes to look over the footage while the player is in the sin bin, watching replays from all angles. This should be enough time to then decide whether the offence actually warranted a red card. If this be the case, the player in question remains off the pitch for the rest of the game, effectively having been given a red card.
I still think there are aspects of the White card that are a good idea, but perhaps think that some of the problems with citing offences could be eased by opening the citing window to a longer period after games.
Do you think these changes would be an improvement or not? I would be interested to hear your thoughts on the subject!