Super League confirms introduction of shot clocks and golden point

Super League will introduce shot clocks, golden point and several other changes to the laws in 2019.

The changes have been made to introduce more speed and on-field drama for spectators and television viewers to enjoy.

The shot clocks will be installed this month at each of the 12 grounds that will regularly stage matches in Super League, as part of the process to reduce the number and length of stoppages in matches.

Teams will be penalised if they fail to beat the shot clock for scrums (35 seconds) or drop-outs (30 seconds), while sanctions will also be introduced to ensure that no more than 80 seconds of match time is used by each kick at goal.

With the number of interchanges available to each team reduced from 10 to eight, the demands on Super League players will become even greater – emphasising the attritional nature of the contest and rewarding the fittest.

In addition, in the last five minutes of each match, the clock will automatically be stopped following a penalty or a drop-goal that goes out of the field of play, or a conversion – or after a try, if a team chooses not to take the conversion attempt.

That process will be extended if the scores are level at full-time by the introduction of Golden Point extra time, providing two five-minute periods in which to determine a winner.

Clubs gave their support for a second referee for all Super League fixtures. However, when considered alongside the other changes, and timeframes available, the top-flight clubs agreed with the RFL to defer the introduction of the second referee – with trials to take place during 2019.