New rules for All Stars game

Changes to the 40-20 rule and scrums will be trialled in Friday night's Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars match at Cbus Super Stadium.

NRL Referees Elite Performance Manager Tony Archer said all scrums would be moved to the centre of the field in the match.

Mr Archer also said any kick of 40 metres or more which finds touch will give possession to the kicking team.

He said both changes were designed to allow more attacking opportunities for both sides and would potentially ensure a more exciting contest.

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The attacking team will have the choice of which side the ball is fed into scrums. Meanwhile, the lock from the attacking team will not have to bind in scrums.

"With significant space and attacking opportunities on both sides of the scrum, we hope that there will be ample opportunities for the team in possession to attack immediately from the scrum win," Mr Archer said.

"While this remains a trial of the change, we wanted to test this in a high-quality pre-season match and the All Stars presents us with that opportunity."

Any general play kick which finds touch 40 metres further down field from where the ball is kicked will result in a tap to the kicking team.

"This is designed to open up the attacking opportunities - both sides will now have a greater opportunity to regain possession after a set," Mr Archer said.

"The video referee will help ensure that the rule is monitored appropriately."

The changes have been discussed by the NRL Competition Committee over the past 12 months. The scrum rules were trialled in a Holden Cup pre-season match in 2014, but Mr Archer said it was important to also test it in a top-level match.

The Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars will see the pre-season trial of four touch judges continue. Two of the touch judges can also move to in-goal areas when play reaches the try-scoring zones, enabling a greater presence of officials during critical plays.