Local Sport

NTFL Adopts AFL Rule Changes

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At Monday night’s NTFL club presidents’ meeting, AFLNT presented to those in attendance that eight of the nine new AFL rules would be implemented in the 2019/20 TIO NTFL season.

To help explain the rule changes to AFLNT football operations staff and NTFL club members, the AFL’s Coaching Innovation & Education Manager, David Rath will hold a briefing session and professional development course on Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning.

Rath was a big part of the new rule changes which have already been implemented at AFL level and in other competitions across the NT (CAFL, Katherine, Barkly, etc) but will be rolled-out in the NTFL for the first time in the upcoming 2019/20 TIO NTFL season.

In addition to the above, the AFLNT umpiring team will be hosting NTFL premier league clubs for a session about the new rules on Monday 26 August.

The eight rules to be implemented to this season’s NTFL competition are;

  1.  Traditional playing positions at centre bounce: 6-6-6 set up for centre bounces or 5-6-5 for women’s games.

  2. Kick ins – extended distance for the player on the mark: Player no longer needs to kick the footy to their self to play on, player on the mark must stand 10 metres from the top of the square.

  3. Marks and free kicks – extended distance for player on the mark: For all defenders who take a mark or gain a free-kick within 9 metres of their own goal, the player on the mark for the attacking team will be brought in line with the top of the goal square.

  4. Umpire contact – protected area: Players will be prohibited from setting up behind the umpire at each centre bounce.

  5. 50m penalty rule amendment: The player with the ball will now be able to advance the mark by 50m without the infringing player delaying the game.

  6. Kicking for goal post siren: A player who has a kick after the siren will now be able to set up to kick the ball across their body using a snap or check-side kick.

  7. Marking contest – hand in the back rule: Player allowed to place their hands on the back of their opponent to protect their position in a marking contest, but not to push the player in the back.

  8. Ruck contests – prior opportunity: A ruck player who takes possession of the football while contesting a bounce, ball up or boundary throw-in will not be regarded as having had a prior opportunity.

The only rule of the nine not to be implemented was that which restricts the runners to only entering the playing surface after a goal and water carriers from entering during live play. The NTFL Laws Committee recommended that these rules would not be suitable to the Darwin wet season conditions, this was endorsed by the AFLNT Executive.

Image: Julian Smith/AAP