OFFICIAL RULES

The NRL Auckland Nines will be conducted in accordance with ‘Rugby League Laws of the Game International Level with Notes on the Laws’ approved by the Australian Rugby League Commission (February 2014) with specific modifications for the NRL Auckland Nines tournament.

The exceptions to ‘Rugby League Laws of the Game International Level with Notes on the Laws’ (February 2014) are:

1. THE GAME

Each match shall consist of two equal halves of nine (9) minutes. A half time period of two (2) minutes shall apply to all matches.

2. PLAYERS

The total number of players on the field at any one time in each team shall not exceed nine (9).
Each Club must nominate a team comprising of fourteen (14) players for each match. A total of five (5) Interchange players may be used on an unlimited interchange basis throughout the match (including Extra Time).
A maximum of two (2) players may be interchanged at any one time.

3. SCRUMS

All scrums shall be formed with a maximum of five (5) players from each team (three players in the front row and two in the second row).
There shall be no more than four (4) players on each team acting as backs;
At the scrum, the non-offending team shall have the loose head and feed, and can elect which side of the scrum the ball shall be fed;
The defending Scrum Half must also take up a position on the same side of the scrum as the ball is being fed;
All defending players not involved in the scrum (other than the defending Scrum Half) must retire five (5) metres from their last row of forwards. (This is as per International Laws);
Scrums will only be formed in the event of a double knock-on or a mutual infringement. In all other circumstances, play will re-start with a handover to the non-offending team, including where kicks find touch in general play. The handover will be provided to the non-kicking team ten (10) metres infield, opposite where the ball crossed the touch line;
In the event of a successful 40/20 kick, play will recommence with a tap re-start to the kicking team twenty (20) metres in from where the ball crossed the touch line.

4. POINTS

A try shall count for four (4) points except for those tries scored in a defined area known as the ‘Bonus Zone’;
The ‘Bonus Zone’ is a clearly marked box, located in the in-goal area between the goal posts at each end of the playing field;
In the event that a try is scored in the ‘Bonus Zone’, such tries shall count for five (5) points (Five Point try). The referee will signal that a “Five Point Try” has been scored by raising his hand into the air and extending his fingers to indicate that the try counts for five (5) points;
If the ball is placed partly on the ‘Bonus Zone’ marking and the remainder of the in-goal (except the dead ball line) the try will deemed to have been scored in the ‘Bonus Zone’;
All try conversions shall be taken by way of dropkick in line with where the try was scored and will count for two (2) points.
All penalty kicks at goal shall be taken by way of a drop kick from the point at which the penalty is awarded and will be worth two (2) points.
A field goal in general play shall be awarded as one (1) point.

5. SHOT-CLOCK (CONVERSIONS)

Immediately following the Referee signalling the awarding of a try, the scoring team will have a maximum period of twenty-five (25) seconds to complete the conversion.
A conversion will be deemed to be completed when the kicker’s foot has struck the ball.
A stadium “Shot-Clock”, visible to both teams and the match officials, will be activated immediately following the awarding of a try and will count down the twenty-five (25) second kicking period. When the period of time has elapsed, a siren will sound to indicate the expiration of the period.
Should the kicker not have completed the conversion prior to the expiration of the Shot-Clock time limit, the referee will signal an incomplete attempt at goal and no points will be awarded.
In the event that the match referee is required to signal time-off after a try has been awarded, the Shot-Clock shall also be stopped and the kick will be taken following the re-start of the match-time. At this point, the Shot-Clock will also be-restarted.
The Shot-Clock will continue to run following the expiration of the match-time and until the player has commenced the conversion.
In the event of a penalty-try or an eight-point try, the Shot-Clock will be used for all associated conversion attempts. In the case of the awarding of a possible eight-point try, the Shot-Clock will re-start only when the Referee has moved into position and has blown the whistle to award the penalty in front of the goal posts.

6. RESTARTS

All kick offs to re-start play, other than for the start of each half, shall be taken by way of drop-kick which must travel ten (10) metres in a forward direction and land in the field of play;
All ‘Drop Kick Off’ re-starts shall be taken by the scoring team;
The kick off to commence each half shall be taken by a place kick which must travel ten (10) metres in a forward direction and land in the field of play.
Where the defending team is required to recommence play with a Goal Line or twenty (20) metre Drop Out, they must do so within twenty (20) seconds, so as not to unnecessarily delay play.
– The twenty (20) second period will commence once the Referee has ruled a Goal Line or twenty (20) metre Drop Kick and will be displayed on the screen Shot-Clock.
– The kick will be deemed to be completed when the kicker’s foot has struck the ball.
– Should the Shot-Clock have counted down to zero (0) seconds without the kick having been taken, then a penalty shall be awarded:
(a) In the case of a Goal Line Drop Out – at the centre of the ten (10) metre line; or
(b) In the case of a twenty (20) metre Drop Out – at the centre of the twenty (20) metre line.

If, in the opinion of the Referee, the re-start is being delayed due to circumstances of the game, the Referee may call time off. In the event that the match referee is required to signal time-off after a Goal Line or twenty (20) metre Drop Out has been ruled, the Shot-Clock shall also be stopped and the kick will be taken following the re-start of the match time. At this point, the Shot-Clock will also be re-started.

7. TEMPORARY SUSPENSION – SIN BIN

The period of temporary suspension shall be a maximum of three (3) minutes or, in the event that a match is completed within this period, the period of temporary suspension shall be until the completion of the match.

8. TACKLE COUNT – 5 TACKLES

A team in possession of the football shall be allowed four successive play the balls;
A handover shall occur after the fourth play-the-ball when the team is
(a) tackled for the fifth time, or
(b) they commit a breach, or
(c) in the event that a player is held up in-goal.

9. EXTRA TIME – GOLDEN TRY

In the event of a match ending with the scores equal after regular time, the following process shall determine the winner of the match:
Teams will change ends and a period of “Extra Time – Golden Try” will be played;
The team that kicked off to commence the first half of the match will kick off to commence the “Extra Time – Golden Try” period;
The winner of the match shall be determined to be the team which scores the first try in this (“Extra Time – Golden Try”) period of play. Full Time shall be called immediately after the try has been awarded;
For Qualifying Round matches, the duration of the “Extra Time – Golden Try” period shall not exceed five (5) minutes. In the event that no try has been scored at the conclusion of this time period, the match shall be deemed a draw, and competition points awarded accordingly (See Note 10 below);
For all Finals’ matches (Quarter Finals, Semi Finals and Final), the match will continue until a try is scored;
Usual Rugby League modes of scoring, such as Field-Goals (in general play) and Penalty Goals shall carry no point’s value during this “Extra Time – Golden Try” period.

9. COMPETITION POINTS

Competition points for the Qualifying Rounds shall be awarded as follows:
Win: 2 Points
Draw: 1 Point
Loss: 0 points