Francis Cummins gives new RFL ruling the cold shoulder

Alex Mellor, pictured, and Nathan Conroy have been training with the Bulls' first-team squad this week. Picture: www.footballcaughtinaction.co.uk

Alex Mellor, pictured, and Nathan Conroy have been training with the Bulls' first-team squad this week. Picture: www.footballcaughtinaction.co.uk

First published in Bulls Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , Bradford Bulls Reporter

Bulls coach Francis Cummins has voiced his opposition to the banning of the shoulder charge, describing it as a “poor” move.

The RFL last night announced it has banned the tackle technique from all competitions with immediate effect.

The move comes following the Rugby League International Federation’s decision earlier this week to immediately outlaw the shoulder charge from the international laws of the game.

Yet Cummins said: “I think it’s poor. I don’t think as a tackle technique it’s that beneficial but it’s part of the game.

“My worry is that I don’t know how the referees are going to be able to differentiate between a tackle and a shoulder charge.

“Depending on where my arm is, I could hit you with my shoulder but my arm could be a bit lower and that might be classed as a shoulder charge.

“If you hit someone directly in the head with a shoulder charge then you need to be banned – and I don’t mean two or three games.

“But don’t be telling me there’s a mass problem with shoulder charges, anyway.”

Meanwhile, Academy hopefuls Alex Mellor and Nathan Conroy have spent time training with the Bulls’ first-team squad this week.

The teenagers, among a five-strong group of Bradford players named in this year’s England Academy squad, are set to line up for the Bulls’ Academy at home to St Helens tonight.

Cummins added: “Nathan Conroy and Alex Mellor are really looking good in the Academy and, with it being half-term, we offered them the chance to train with us this week.

“Obviously they’ll be playing on Thursday night but they’ve experienced how we train and sampled life in a full-time environment.

“There are some very exciting times ahead for those two.”

Comments (1)

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6:02pm Thu 21 Feb 13

billybobbull says...

As a RL player trained by Keith Mumby, I think I can explain the difference between a shoulder charge and a tackle. I am sure the modern referees can too. The vast majority of tackles are fair and allow for the tackled player to prepare for the hit.

A shoulder charge in the modern era of size and strength, from the blind side with not arm involvement allows for little or no protection. Clearly it needs to banned. On this occasion, FC is wrong. IMO.
As a RL player trained by Keith Mumby, I think I can explain the difference between a shoulder charge and a tackle. I am sure the modern referees can too. The vast majority of tackles are fair and allow for the tackled player to prepare for the hit. A shoulder charge in the modern era of size and strength, from the blind side with not arm involvement allows for little or no protection. Clearly it needs to banned. On this occasion, FC is wrong. IMO. billybobbull
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