Monday, November 12, 2012

The Basics of Rugby: part of an intro to Western Europe and the UK

Intro to W Europe / the UK by trudeau
Intro to W Europe / the UK, a photo by trudeau on Flickr.

"What may appear to be total chaos - is a game of rugby."

Selected items from the site

Players in the other team are allowed to tackle, hold, push or grasp the ball carrier but must not tackle or obstruct any other player.

None of your team are allowed to obstruct opposition players, including when they are attempting to to tackle your ball carrier.

Any player may kick the ball any distance in any direction.

Generally speaking team-mates should be behind the kicker when the ball is kicked or they will be "off-side" and may give away a penalty.

From time to time knots of players form spontaneously and become involved in contests for possession of the ball.

If the ball is on the ground it`s called a ruck and players must bind together and attempt to gain possession by pushing and stepping over the ball (rucking).

If the ball is off the ground it`s called a maul. Players must be bound together. They push and grapple , attempting to gain control of the ball (mauling) . A maul must keep moving or play will be stopped.

Even when a player breaks the rules play may continue if that is to the advantage of the opposing team. If there is no advantage a penalty kick is awarded for a serious offence or a scrum is set up for a minor offence.

A scrum is when the 8 forwards from each team pack down, head to head in one mass. The ball is put into the centre of the mass and the players attempt to win control with their feet and legs. No handling in the scrum!

Play also stops when the ball goes out of play over the touch-lines. It is restarted with a lineout where the ball is thrown in beteen the two lines of opposing players who leap to catch it.