By Ali Stokes
Following the news last month that this week that the RFU are set to trail a law that will reduce the legal height of the tackle to below the nipple line, England international and British and Irish Lions fullback/wing Anthony Watson has called for a reduction in the number of games players should be permitted to participate in per season.
The Bath Rugby star is currently set for an extended spell on the sidelines after suffering an injury setback on a torn Achilles tendon sustained during the 2018 Six Nations, alongside fellow Bath, England and Lions teammate Jonathan Joseph, who is currently recovering from ankle surgery the centre underwent over the summer.
The law trial that the RFU will test in the Championship next season is in attempt of reducing the number of head injuries and possible concussion events sustained during contact. However, Watson believes the answer to improving player welfare lays in reducing the maximum number of games he and his fellows can play to 20 per season.
Commenting on the RFU's trial, Watson said: "It could have a negative impact, we could see more concussions from collisions with the knee if players are going lower in the tackle.
“You don’t want to see passive tackles, I don’t think changing the nature of the game is the answer.
“What’s difficult is playing 25 plus games per year and you end up playing at 75 or 80 per cent. These things aren’t decided by the players but I’d have thought 20 games maximum is the right number.”
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