The AFL has confirmed reports it will trial a new penalty for deliberate rushed behinds during the first two rounds of the JLT Community Series.
Under the new rule, following a deliberate rushed behind, a point will be awarded and there will be a ball up five metres in front of the goal square, rather than a free kick awarded on the goal line.
During the third week of the JLT Community Series, the league will revert back to a free kick being awarded following a rushed behind, with AFL then set to analyse the results.
Many in the AFL world believe a free kick on the goal line, resulting in almost a certain goal, is too harsh a penalty for a rushed behind, forcing the league to rethink the penalty.
The AFL has clarified the rules around a rushed behind, with umpires set to penalise a player if:
– he rushed a behind from beyond the goalsquare
– he had time and space to dispose of the ball
– he was not considered to be under pressure
– a player in a ruck contest hit the ball on the full over the line