Fellow referees. This is to let you know that under no circumstances do you kick-off a game where no ropes have been installed. It does not matter who the teams are, or does it matter if it’s a matrix game or not: NO ROPES, NO REFEREE.
When you arrive at the venue, 1 hour before kick-off, and you spy no ropes, issue a warning to the home team that they have 1 hour (or an agreed time) to get their act together or you will get back in your car and leave. If the home team does not comply, LEAVE! You will send me an email which I will send to Pete Styen the President of the Mid South Rugby Union. Pete will levy a fine against the home team.
According to the South & Midsouth Rugby Unions, both sides of the pitch must be roped-off, but in the interest of getting games played a single roped off side will be allowed, but, note well, all players and spectators must be behind the rope on the side that’s in compliance. NO EXCEPTIONS.
You’ll hear all the excuses in the world why a field is not roped off, but do not give in! Tell the teams that last week or last month does not apply to YOUR GAME. Tell them don’t care what has happened in the past, and what a team might have got away with – it’s not going to happen in today in your game. Be adamant.
When the match secretary calls you earlier in the week to confirm the fixture, tell him/her what your requirements are, and that you just love them ropes!
– Dave Hooper