Hallam Amos is intrigued to see the attacking opportunities that the new 50:22 kicking laws might present in the new season.
The new law, which was initially trialled in the National Rugby Championship in Australia, sees a kick from within a player’s own half, that bounces in the field of play before crossing the touchline in the opposition 22, results in the kicking team getting the throw into the lineout.
With full back Amos returning to the Cardiff side for Friday’s pre-season clash against Bath, he is set to play to the 50:22 laws for the first time and he’s already felt its impact on the training field.
The Welsh international explained: “Even in training, I’ve been conscious when I’m in the backfield covering as a 15 that when play comes around the half-way line you do need to stand a bit deeper.
“Compared to the past, when Ronan O’Gara retired there weren’t many 10s who were pinning the corners.
“So when you’re in the backfield, you’re coming up with the frontline to cover the chip, because outside halves tend not to try to pin you back in your corner.
“But now with the law changes, you have to be conscious that if you’re too close to the frontline then they will dink it over the head.
“It’s a great advantage to then have a line-out in the opposition 22.
“Both myself and opposing 15s are going to be a bit deeper, which then opens up space for more attacking kicks. Whether that’s the flat crossfield, or the little chip.
The two-time Six Nations winner added: “You may not see many 50:22. In the southern hemisphere they’ve brought it in and there haven’t been many at all.
“But you will see more space open up elsewhere. That could be down the middle of the park, with two in the backfield, standing close to the touchline to protect it.
“Or it might be more attacking kicks because the 15 is standing a little bit deeper. So I think you will see a number of changes.
“Teams are good at covering the backfield these days so I’m not sure we’ll see many actual 50:22.
“But we’ll see. It will definitely change positioning slightly, which will open up more attacking kicks possibly.
“Certainly in training I’ve been conscious to watch the space behind my shoulder more than I would’ve done last year.”