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The new rules changes that saw the clock stopped in the closing stages of the Storm's nail-biting win over the Panthers worked a treat. Copyright: Brett Crockford/NRL Photos.
Rugby league's exciting new rules have been emphasised by two passages of play in Round 2.

The Warriors' Holden Cup team took full advantage of the new 40/20 rule, allowing them to score a try directly off the back of a quick tap, while the clock-stopping finish to the Melbourne Storm v Penrith Panthers clash at AAMI Park had fans on the edge of their seats.

The Quick Tap

Warriors halfback Mason Lino kicked a huge 40/20 with his side trailing late in the first half against St George Illawarra. He knew instantly that the play was on.

Lino sprinted down field knowing that there was a quick tap to be had once all the Match Officials were in position.

As the Dragons players frantically made an attempt to get back to their line, Lino demanded the ball, took a quick tap, stepped off his left foot and scored virtually untouched.

The play highlights the new rule introduced at the start of the year:

40/20 restarts: The team that performs a 40/20 kick will restart play with a tap kick 20 metres in from the touch at the point it crossed the line instead of at a scrum.

The Clock Stops

The enthralling finish to the Melbourne Storm v Penrith Panthers match at AAMI Park also highlighted the new rules and how they have added excitement to the game.

Stop The Clock: During the last five minutes of a match, the clock will stop following a conversion or penalty kick at goal until play restarts at halfway. The interpretation change will add excitement during close matches, provide consistency across matches and reduce potential time-wasting.

When Cooper Cronk kicked a field goal with five minutes left on the clock, it appeared the Storm were heading for their second straight victory.

But with less than 90 seconds left on the clock, Panthers halfback Peter Wallace calmly slotted his own one-pointer to tie the game.

The clock stopped with one minute and 22 seconds left. Cam Smith stepped up from the kick-off and managed to thump the ball along the ground over the sideline to earn his team another chance to win the game.

Cooper Cronk duly kicked his second field goal to put his side in front again, leaving 30 seconds on the clock.

But there was time for one last play and off the restart the Panthers managed to force a penalty and had a chance to win the game after the fulltime siren.

Wallace missed the penalty attempt and the Storm escaped with a dramatic one-point victory.
Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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