Q: When a wrestler is taken straight to near-fall criteria (in sudden victory or UTB) the match continues until the near fall or fall situation has concluded. The question is determining when the situation has concluded. Some were told by veteran officials that it is as soon as they come out of criteria, others felt there needed to be an angle bigger then 90. Or do they have to hit a totally defendable position?
A: When a wrestler goes directly to NF criteria from a TD or reversal, "the match shall continue to the near fall or fall situation has concluded” (Rule 6.7.3). The key word is situation. The situation must have concluded (defendable base). It does not say that criteria is no longer being met. You can have criteria not being met, but the situation may not have concluded. This occurs all the time. If you are holding the points, then the situation has not concluded. Just like any other NF or fall situation that occurs throughout a match. It is awarded the same way it is awarded within the first three periods of competition. So the defensive wrestler may be out of criteria, a NF has been earned, but wrestling will continue if the situation has not ended. (This would also apply anytime a technical fall has been earned during the situation.) The other error that occurs in the application of this rule is that some officials give the now offensive wrestler a brief period of time to get their opponent into NF criteria. The defensive wrestler must have gone directly into NF criteria if you are to allow them the opportunity to obtain a fall. For example, you can’t bring a wrestler to the mat with a bear hug and take several seconds to get them into NF criteria. The takedown or reversal is simultaneous with NF criteria being met.