New rules to protect rugby players’ heads

Rugby union’s world governing body announced new measures on Wednesday to protect players from head injuries.

World Rugby said in a statement that from January 3 two new categories of dangerous tackles will carry penalty offences to deter and eradicate high tackles.

Minimum on-field sanctions will be introduced throughout the game for reckless and accidental contact with the head, measures that will effectively lower the acceptable height of the tackle.

A global education program will support the measures.

“The approach, approved by the World Rugby Council after extensive expert, independent and union evaluation, combines with new disciplinary sanctions and a re-focus of match officials on dangerous play,” World Rugby said.

“It will provide a package of measures that aims to change culture in the sport to ensure that the head is a no-go area.”

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