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Super League to become faster with introduction of shot clock

Rugby league may become an even faster game in 2020 following the successful introduction of the shot clock.

In 2019, the shot clock ruling gave 35 seconds to restart the match from a scrum and 30 seconds from a drop-out.

Super League say it helped cut the average time of games by over five minutes - from 95 minutes 59 seconds in 2018, to 90 minutes 47 seconds in 2019.

Next season, there will be a further five-second reduction - 30 seconds for a scrum, and 25 seconds for a drop-out.

The new shot clock restrictions will also operate in the Championship and the Challenge Cup, but referees will continue to manage time-keeping in League One.­ The LED shot clocks were installed by LEDsynergy at the start of the year at each of the 12 grounds that will regularly stage matches in Super League, as part of the process to reduce the number and length of stoppages in matches.

Super League executive chairman Robert Elstone said: "The facts tell us the introduction of the shot clock was the right thing to do.

"It has made a significant, positive impact. Fans tell us repeatedly that pace of play sets our sport apart and is a major factor in their enjoyment of the game.

"Backed up by evidence from the NRL (in Australia) and, after watching our players watch the shot clock in action in 2019, it confirmed to us there was the scope to shorten times further."

The shot clock was one of several new measures brought in for the 2019 season, along with a reduction in the number of interchanges for each team from 10 to 8 and the introduction of golden-point extra-time.

The 2020 Super League season begins on 30 January.

More information about the shot clocks can be found on https://­ledsynergy.­co.­uk/­article/­shot-clocks-introduced-into-super-league-rugby

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