TOKYO – World Rugby chief Brett Gosper said there would be no change to the hard line on high tackles at the Rugby World Cup and that the number of red cards would decrease once players changed their behaviour.
There were seven red cards shown in the pool phase of this year's tournament compared to one in 2015 and two each at the 2007 and 2011 World Cups.
Most have been for tackles that made contact with an opponent's head, an offence World Rugby is determined to remove from the game because of the potential for impact-related concussion.
"If there have been red cards shown, it's because there are big issues around player welfare due to foul play whether it's intentional or unintentional," Gosper told reporters on Tuesday.
"And we'll drive that hard line to protect the players and we'll see diminishing red cards because the behaviour of players and coaches will change over time.