Ball on ground - no tackle
Know and understand the 'ball on ground' situation when no tackle has
taken place. Can I pick it up?
Why you may be on the ground with the ball
If you are not "on your feet" you may be "on the ground".
Having just one knee on the ground or on a player on the ground is enough
for you to be considered as being "on the ground"
This situation may come about in a number of ways
You`re carrying the ball, try to turn quickly, slip and fall to the ground
A would-be tackler flings you to the ground but fails to hold on to you
so you are not "held" when you go to ground,
which means you have not been tackled. It also means the player
who put you on the ground is not a tackler.
Under pressure, mistakes are made. Bending down to pick up the ball
you may "knock on" or fumble the ball or even miss it completely.
If opponents are close, you may lose possession of the rugby ball.
To overcome the problem, rugby players are encouraged to "fall on
the ball" - go to ground and envelope the ball and gain control of it.
What can the player on the ground do?
In these situations, when a player with the ball is on the ground without having been tackled
the player must immediately
get up while still holding the ball OR
pass or hand the ball to another player, preferably in your team!(and get up) OR
let go of the ball (release it) (and move away from it/get up)
What must other players do?
Other players must do their best to stay on their feet. If you are
first to arrive you may attempt to take possession of the ball.
If other players are already there it may be a ruck or a maul
and it becomes more complicated. The match official will usually
call out the word ("RUCK!" or "MAUL!"), so make sure you are listening!
Look for details of rucks and mauls so you know what to do.