LAW CHANGES: Meh, says Wilco, there will still be knocks

rugby14 May 2024 15:18
By:Brenden Nel
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Wilco Louw © Gallo Images

There may be some freak out over World Rugby’s decision to change some laws once again but some of those most affected by it seem the least concerned by its impact.

Powerhouse Vodacom Bulls front row Wilco Louw expressed the equivalent of a shrug and a “meh” when dealing with the obvious question on his thoughts of the law changes, which now outlaw a scrum from a free kick.

There have been arguments that this will depower strong scrums but the tighthead believes there will still be ample opportunity to dominate up front, no matter what laws are changed.

“There will still be knocks in the game,” Louw said without flinching ahead of his team’s round 17 Vodacom United Rugby Championship match against Benetton at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.

“They won’t take scrums away completely. That’s only one part they have tried to change. But I think there will be more than enough opportunities to make your mark in the scrums.

“The teams won’t have fewer knock-ons in the game, so there will still be opportunities. You will just have to use the opportunities better.”

It may well be the equivalent of adapting or dying, but Louw is correct, and while the new law will see novel ways of teams trying to avoid scrumming, those who enjoy the setpiece will be looking for their own ways of ensuring they still get the most out of the setpiece.


Louw also admitted there was a lot of self-reflection in the camp after the Bulls allowed Glasgow Warriors to come back from 37-10 down to grab two crucial bonus points.

And with the way Benetton rallied to beat the Sharks in the final minutes, he knows his team can’t allow the same mistake this week.

“It wasn’t what we wanted and we lost momentum in the second half. I can’t really say what happened other than we probably allowed them to dictate the tempo and momentum of the game.

“Ideally we wouldn’t want it to happen, especially when we saw what Benetton did to the Sharks in the last 20 minutes. We will rather want to control the full 80 minutes so that we can keep the focus. It is something that shouldn’t have happened and it did make our task on the log a bit more difficult but hey, we take it as it comes and we need to focus now on Benetton.”

The Bulls will name their side on Friday for the clash.