Rugby league considering bringing in golden point extra time for all matches

RUGBY league is considering doing away with draws and bringing in sudden death ‘golden point’ extra time.

A ‘shot clock’ for drop outs and scrums may also be introduced from next season.

Castleford won through to last year’s Grand Final on golden point. Now the concept may be extended to all rugby league matches.

Australia’s NRL currently operates a system where teams have 30 seconds to take a conversion or goal line drop out or feed a scrum.

Now SunSport has learned rugby league chiefs over here are debating whether to follow suit amid fears too much time is being wasted.

At the moment, many 80-minute matches take about two hours to complete with several fans and coaches complaining that is too long.

Under the new system, put forward at a rules meeting on Thursday, that time will be cut down drastically, with the ball being in play for longer during the game.

Teams failing to beat the clock will be penalised, meaning defending sides must get their act in order and not slow the game down by bringing physios on to the pitch.

Canberra hooker Josh Hodgson says he is happy with life in Australia
The NRL has had the ‘golden point’ system for several years
Getty Images

Golden point is also thought to have been debated but is considered a much more controversial move.

The NRL has had the system – where sides play on for an extra 10 minutes, five minutes each way, if scores are tied after 80 – in place since 2003.

In play-off games that is extended to 20 minutes and all knockout games in this country have it – including Super League’s semi-finals and Grand Final – with Castleford’s Luke Gale dropping an 86th minute goal against St Helens to book a Grand Final spot last year.

However, SunSport has been told the Rugby Football League is thinking about extending that to all matches.

Meanwhile, Tom Johnstone’s England dream is thought to be still alive as he may snub the chance to play for Scotland.

Wakefield winger Tom Johnstone’s England dreams are thought to be still alive

The Wakefield winger was thought to have suffered a serious knee injury in Friday’s success over Catalans Dragons.

But scans have come back better than was first feared and Johnstone could yet be available for the Autumn’s internationals.

And it is believed he wants to play in England’s series against New Zealand after scoring 24 tries, making him Super League’s joint top try scorer.

Johnstone could feature in Scotland’s European Championships campaign as he qualifies because his father was serving with the Scots Guards when he was born in Germany, meaning he was technically born in Edinburgh.

But sources have told SunSport that England is his choice.


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