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No scrummaging, tackling or mauling: RFU's plans to get rugby back on the road

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The RFU have talked about rugby without scrums

The RFU have talked about rugby without scrums

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The RFU have talked about rugby without scrums

Plans are being drawn up for rugby to be played without scrummaging, tackling and mauling next season to increase the likelihood of some form of a return.

An internal working group at the RFU is understood to be working on variations of what is being described as "rugby activity" - focusing on reducing the levels of contact to encourage players to return to clubs next season, even if full contact is not allowed.

A range of phased activities is being considered, from social-distanced training to competitive touch rugby and a shortened version of the game, played on half a pitch with limited contact.

Given the intensity of the contact involved in scrummaging, tackling and mauling, there is a growing acceptance this aspect of the sport may not be possible until next year.

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"By rugby activity, we are definitely not talking about 15-a-side, full-on contact rugby," said Steve Grainger, the RFU's director of rugby development.

"There are a whole range of activities that you could create without having 16 people in a scrum. That is probably the most invasive and intensive form of contact that we are going to have. Or a pile of people in a ruck. They seem like they will be the last things to come back." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk