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Question Number: 28992

Law 9 - The Ball in and out of Play 11/19/2014

RE: Competitive Under 15

Aaron Speca of Virginia Beach, VA USA asks...

Ball is headed out of bounds with plenty of momentum to get it across the line. It strikes the base of the corner flag and bounces back into the field of play without ever completely crossing either the side or end lines. What is the proper call?

When this happened in a recent match, the players all stopped like they didn't know what to do, and the CR decided to stop play and award a throw in from the corner as if it had gone over the sideline.

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Aaron,
The proper call is no call at all! If the ball has not exited the FOP the ball is in play! Mind you a wise old assessor once told me give them what they want when it really doesn't matter.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Aaron
As the ball did not leave the field of play it was play on. Would players stop if the ball hit the frame of the goal? The corner flag is treated the same as the goal posts.

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Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

Perhaps the players all stopped because they saw the ball go completely out, even if the ref crew didn't? I hate when that happens, when I'm the only one on the field that didn't see something! Even so, players should learn, 'Play to the whistle.' The ball was not out (per the referee's vision), so play shouldn't have stopped.

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Answer provided by Referee James Sowa

If the ball does not leave the play but the referee blows the whistle inadvertently, the restart would be a dropped ball (as in your situation above). In the scenario above, the referee should not have stopped play since, as you point out, the ball never fully crossed the end line or the touch line. It was a mistake and a missed learning opportunity for the players.

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