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RICK TUCCI UPDATE: How the 2013 FILA wrestling rules will be called

Rick Tucci USWOA
04/11/2013


General modifications for both styles

1. Going out of bounds on their feet with any attack that started in the center will be a caution plus one point for fleeing the mat and not just 1 point. This occurs, when a wrestler makes an action and the defensive wrestler goes straight out of bounds. This can also be called if the wrestler makes no attempt to stay inside the mat and walks off to avoid wrestling, it will be a caution and 1 point for fleeing the mat. If normal wrestling results in wrestlers going out of bounds, it will only be 1-point. The same as it has been in the past.

2. At the Europeans, pushing a wrestler out with arms extended when the defensive wrestlers was trying to stay in bounds, the wrestler was given an "Attention" and no point was awarded at times. If wrestling was near the edge and the action resulted in them going out even if there was a slight push was given 1-point as normal. This was called but never really occurred more than one time in a match. The wrestler pushing the guy out was only given an "Attention" and was not penalized. We will call as we have in the past and give the 1-point for the step out but we will talk to the wrestler scoring the point and indicate that he/she needs to be initiating a hold and not just pushing out. We will follow this lead unless it is flagrant from the center and no obvious techniques are used.

3. Clubbing the head - they did not want wrestlers boxing. If both wrestlers were slapping at each other but it wasn't too bad, they were first warned verbally. If one wrestler got a good shot or slapping continues, the procedure is to give an "Attention" and a stern warning. If it happens again, it would be a Caution and 1-point. Wrestling in a collar tie is fine, but clubbing down on the head or getting a shot in is not allowed.

4. Posting on the head - this is when the defensive guy has his arm extended posting on the opponents forehead. This was discouraged because it prevented scoring. The procedure would be to say "Open". Then stop the match, talk with the wrestler. If continues, Stop and give an "Attention". If it continues, then give a Caution and 1-point for fleeing the hold. Sometimes, the first stop could result in an Attention. The wrestlers must be given an "Attention" before a caution and 1-point can be given. The wrestler cannot put their hands in their opponents face to prevent scoring from taking place would be addressed the same way.

5. Grabbing fingers and hands - This was strongly discouraged because it prevents scoring. The first time, the referee should slap it off and say "Open, No Fingers." The referee should continue to talk to the wrestlers to stay off the hands. If it continues, Wrestling should be stopped and the offending wrestlers should be given an "Attention." If continues, then a Caution and 1-point would be given.

6. Fleeing the hold is mainly grouped under some of the above points (grabbing fingers/hands, posting on the head, blocking the chest with forearms and hands, etc...), basically anything that is blocking and preventing scoring actions. If a wrestler is blocking and not making an attempt to score, he or she may be called for fleeing the hold. The procedure for this is to first use FILA vocabulary to get the wrestler to be active. The action could be stopped and the offending wrestler could be told what the problem is. If it continues, then stop and give an "Attention." If it continues after that, then a Caution and 1-point will be given. The important point is that these Caution and 1-points that are given cannot be challenged by the coach. They also must be confirmed by the Mat Chairman or Judge for it to be called. Also, If technical points were scored, the fleeing the hold call was not called as much. It was mainly called when the score was 0-0. Also, once a caution is confirmed, the referee must look back at the wrestlers to see if any actions were taking place. If something occurred and points were attained, then the caution would go away. If there was no action or no points, then wrestling would be stopped and caution would be given. They didn't want a good action that scored technical points to be taken away so a caution could be given. This is a judgment call by the refereeing team.

7. Head Butt - if it was intentional - it would be a caution and 1-point and eliminated from the match.

8. The Referees are to be very vocal during the match and are to stimulate action and scoring. There was a big emphasis on using the FILA vocabulary during the match. Like "Red Action, Blue Head up, Red Open, etc..."

9. Wet Towels are not allowed in the corner between periods. The Referee will remove the towel immediately. If it continues, they will remove the coach from the corner. This is for a FILA run event.

Freestyle

1. The consensus from the European Championships is that they do not want many clinches at the end of the period if there is not any score. If there was more than 1 clinch in a match is was not good. Fleeing the hold was called more often as a result. However, it was not called out of control and wrestlers were given the opportunities to score points. In most cases, this did stimulate more action because wrestlers knew that they could be called and that may decide the period. The refereeing team must look at who is trying to score points and who is trying block. This is a judgment call by the team.
- The protocol is to talk to wrestler seen as not being active or who is blocking - same as discussed in the previous points. Use FILA vocabulary to encourage them to Open and be more active. The match could be stopped and the wrestler could be talked to first, but that is not a requirement.
- If a wrestler continues to block (or grabbing hands, etc...), the referee will stop the match and give an "Attention" This is important because it tells the wrestler and coaches that they are about to get called for a Caution and 1-point. Giving an Attention does not need confirmation.
- If it continues, then the referee will ask for a Caution and 1-point and must be confirmed by the Mat Chairman or Judge.
- This call cannot be challenged by the coaches.
- The attentions and cautions can be given anytime they are justified. The referee must stop and give the wrestler a verbal "Attention" before giving a caution.
- If a second caution is given for fleeing the mat in the same period, it does not require an "attention". It may be given immediately. This doesn't happen very often in a match.
- It seemed, that once a caution and point was given, the action of wrestlers picked up.
- There were still clinches, but they were cut down to 1/5 of the number that was done before.
- This was mainly called in a 0-0 match. That doesn’t mean that it has to be called but should be if it is warranted. Also if points are scored, then fleeing the hold is less likely to be called.

2. Attack and counter attack - who's action was it? If the offensive wrestler maintains the lock, it may be only a 3 points for the offensive wrestler and not 3-2 (double leg - body lock) situation. This is still a judgment call by the refereeing team.

3. Clinch period - if three points of contact are made it is going to be 1-point - if a wrestler is put into a seated position it is 1-point - mainly the same as before. The one situation that was discussed on a video was a single leg by the offensive wrestler and the defensive wrestler goes to a whizzer low on his ankle. The offensive wrestler has the leg, and the defensive wrestler may have an ankle whizzer but if he is on both knees and 1 hand they will give the 1-point for the offensive wrestler because 3 points of contact are made. This was really only called during the clinch and it is because this is a special situation.

Greco Roman

1. Fleeing the hold - this was called with great variation at the tournament. If one wrestler was constantly blocking, grabbing hands, not being open, etc.. The procedure would be the same as above. 1st – Talk to the wrestlers using FILA vocabulary, the match could be stopped to talk to the wrestler. 2nd - Stop and give an "Attention", confirmation is not needed to give an Attention. 3rd - Give a Caution and 1-point - this must be confirmed by the Mat Chairman or Judge. This was called throughout the Greco tournament. The feeling is that this will still be called but not at the frequency that it began with at the Europeans. This will probably get called potentially twice throughout a 3 period match. Going to Par-terre was okay. If a wrestler is constantly blocking and making no attempt to take hold, they could be called.

2. Position - there was an emphasis on stopping the wrestlers and talking to them about the correct position. They wanted the wrestlers to be chest to chest and taking a hold. They did not want them forehead to forehead (which was called the Freestyle position). They also wanted them to be open and not locking down on the hands and just pushing a guy around. If a wrestler was just pushing, he would be stopped and warned.

3. Par terre - pause on blowing whistle- same as before

4. Any crawling is discouraged in par terre. They did not want the wrestlers moving much at all or working toward the zone. If a wrestler is fleeing the hold in the par terre position:
1. Verbal warning given, no stoppage of match and no confirmation needed from other 2 officials
2. Attention given, no stoppage of match and no confirmation needed.
3. Fleeing the hold, confirmation needed (judge OR mat chairman) stop the match issue caution and 1 point.

This rule involving crawling from par terre, unless it is flagrant, will probably not be called. By flagrant, we mean from the center to the zone, etc.

5. Any fouls that occurred during the 30-second clinch period were returned back to that position. If a leg foul occurred during that time, once confirmed, it was stopped, points and cautions were given and restarted back in the same place. They did not let the time run out of the period before the match was stopped.

6. Leg bent in par terre
- Official will slap away and say "attention" without stopping match
- If continues, caution plus 1 or 2 points depending on scoring attempt or not.

7. Grabbing hands in par terre – this procedure is similar to fleeing the hold in par-terre - the referee should say "Open" and slap off the hand. If continues, say "Attention" and slap again. If wrestler continues, then it would be a caution and 1-point. The caution must be confirmed by the Mat Chairman or Judge.

Rick Tucci is the president of the U.S. Wrestling Officials Association. He was recently elected to the Board of CPLA, the Pan American Wrestling Association.
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