The 2023 Rugby World Cup features some of the new innovations currently in rugby, including what has become known as the orange card. So let’s take a look at what the orange card is.
What is the orange card in the Rugby World Cup? The Orange card is when a yellow card is given for a foul in rugby, that can be upgraded to a red card while the player is serving a penalty off the pitch.
The orange card is actually a lot more simple of a process than you might think, even though it is not a physical orange card. What the orange card means is that if an act of foul play meets the minimum threshold for a yellow card, then the on field referee can give that player a yellow card.
While that player is off the pitch for those ten minutes, the television match official will take a look at all of the different angles of the incident which caused the yellow card. If the TMO believes it is a red card offence, then the yellow card is upgraded to a red card by the TMO and the player cannot return to the pitch.
It is one of the newest rugby innovations and will be used at the 2023 Rugby World Cup. The idea behind the innovation is to help speed up the game. Referees now do not need to decide whether an incident is a red or yellow card, simply whether it meets the yellow card threshold.
You will most often see an orange card being used in rugby for dangerous tackles. There is often a very fine line between a red card for a high tackle and a yellow card for a high tackle. Factors like level of danger, mitigation and whether there was a wrap in the tackle, so the TMO has a lot more time to look at the incident.
Why is there an orange card in the Rugby World Cup?
There are really two main reasons for the introduction of the orange card into international rugby. Those two reasons are to speed up the game, as well as taking some of the pressure off of the referees.
World Rugby have made it pretty clear that they want to speed up the game at an international level. The belief Is that to grow the game and bring in more supporters, the game needs to be sped up. The orange card is a very good way to speed the game up.
TMO reviews for foul play are usually incredibly time consuming and to make the right decision, referees often need a long time to make sure that they get the decision correct. By giving the decision to someone else, it therefore means that the game can resume quite quickly and helps to speed up the game.
The other reason is it takes a lot of pressure off the referee. For one thing, there is pressure on the referee to get the game going quickly, even if they need time to make the correct decision. This takes this concern away from the referee.
It is also much more likely that the TMO will be able to make the right decision. The TMO will usually be in a specially created area, with lots of different screens around them. There is also no crowd noise influencing the TMO and they have usually around 8 minutes to look at the incident so it is likely to be a more accurate decision as well.
Are there 20 minute red cards at the Rugby World Cup?
Some of the more die hard rugby fans will know about a red card concept called the 20 minute red card. It is one of the recent innovations that has come from World Rugby in the last couple of years.
The 20 minute red card will not feature at the 2023 Rugby World Cup. The format is that when a player receives a red card, their team will be down one player for 20 minutes. After those 20 minutes, a different player is allowed to come onto the pitch to replace the player who has been sent off.
The concept has been trialled in Super Rugby recently, as the World Rugby wanted to see whether it is the sort of thing which could work at the highest level of rugby. But after the trials, World Rugby decided against using the format at the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
Rugby World Cup new rules
The 2023 Rugby World Cup will feature a few new rules which rugby fans might not be aware of.
The major rule change is the introduction of the orange card. The new card means that if an offence meets the yellow card threshold then the referee will award just a yellow card. While the player is off the pitch, the TMO will take a look at the incident and see whether it is worth a red card.
This not only helps to take some pressure off the referees, but it also helps to speed the game up a lot more. Speeding the games up is a major point that World Rugby has emphasised over the past few years. The other major rule change that will feature at the tournament is also aimed at speeding the game up.
The 2023 Rugby World Cup will be the first with specific time limits for different set pieces. For example, kickers will now have a maximum of 90 seconds from when a try is scored to attempt the conversion.
Similarly, team’s will only get 60 seconds to attempt a penalty kick. There are also time limits on how long teams will have for a scrum and lineout. The aim for World Rugby is that the scrum and lineouts will be just 30 seconds long and not any longer.
There is also more of an aim from World Rugby to enforce the 5 second rule at the ruck. These changes are aimed at speeding up the games and making the Rugby World Cup a great spectacle for fans to watch.