6-6-6 setup at centre bounces

BartBart

Premiership Player
Mar 30, 2008
4,517
3,759
Perth
AFL Club
West Coast
What does the rule say as to when exactly the players are allowed to break out of the formation?

The reason I ask is that I noticed one of the Pies wingmen often ran around the back side of the square as soon as the umpire bouncing the ball started his movement to the bounce. I.e. before the bounce.

The umpire on the corner of the square ignored the headstart although Grundy was warned once (maybe in the 3rd quarter) - although not sure why though.

Is it a bit of a loophole to the rules or not umpired properly?
 

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Sumwun

Draftee
Apr 6, 2019
15
15
AFL Club
Fremantle
Once the field Umpire commences their approach to the Centre Circle to bounce or throw up the football to start a quarter, or recommence play after a Goal has been scored the players are free to move out of the 6-6-6 positions.

So the laws were applied as they were written. I'm thinking there might be a tweak next year.
 

BartBart

Premiership Player
Mar 30, 2008
4,517
3,759
Perth
AFL Club
West Coast
I think you will see teams making use of this then.

I bet a defender will get a running start and fly into the square as the bounce occurs (making up the distance between the 50m and square in the seconds between the start of the bounce routine and the physical bounce).
 
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