Ask the Ref - Indicating a kick at goal

James Jones answers another of your questions, this time regarding the liberty a player might have (or not have), having been awarded a penalty, to run in a try having indicated an intention to kick at goal.


In a recent match I noticed that after a penalty a player had the tee in his hands and was placing it on the floor. During this time the referee was talking to the captain. When he came back, he advised the player the mark was further back. When he returned to the mark he tapped the ball and ran in for a try. A friend of mine said that when the tee comes onto the pitch that he has to kick for goal. Is he correct? In this instance, do you think it should have been called back? 


In relation to the points you raise I refer to Law 21 (Penalty and Free kicks). Law 21.5(b) states:

If the kicker indicates to the referee the intention to kick at goal, the kicker must kick at goal.

Therefore the question the referee has to ask themselves in this scenario is whether the player has indicated to them (the referee) the intention to kick at goal. The kicking tee should not be brought onto the field by any personnel until such time as the kicker has indicated to the referee his intention to kick at goal. In your question, had the kicker indicated their intention to the referee to kick at goal, and then the tee had been brought on then yes, the 'quick tap' should not have been allowed. Had the kicking tee been brought on without the referee's (or dependent upon the level of the game the assistant referee / 4th or 5th match official) permission, then the referee will sanction the person bringing the kicking tee on accordingly.

I hope this answers your question.