The Six Nations Committee has required all players participating in the Six Nations Tournament to wear “smart” mouthguards. Equipped with sensors, these are supposed to provide indications of potential concussions. In the event of an alert, the official doctor will ask the player concerned to leave the field to undergo an HIA1 protocol.
With this in mind, these protections are already worn during training. Which is not without causing some gnashing of… teeth. “We've been testing them since last week and it's a bit complicated,” admits second-row Romain Taofifenua. They're a bit big and it's hard to get used to them. The big chip is annoying in the mouth but you have to get used to it…”
Thomas Ramos was more vindictive. “I think it’s a shame that we’re being forced to do that,” said the Toulouse fullback. It was imposed on us rather than offered to us, asking “who wants it, who doesn’t?” They came to make impressions but between some who have small dental problems, others habits, others, well, who don't wear any... During the match, it's going to be annoying to think about your guard teeth that don’t suit you well when you need to be focused on many other things…”