Many people around the world do get attracted to the game of Rugby, sometimes they even misunderstand the game with American Football, but let us tell you that it is completely a different ‘ball game’ all together. We have simplified the way you want to understand the game of Rugby. Let us check it out!
Time: Total 80 minutes divided by 40 minute halves. Stoppage time is added at the end.
Simple understanding of Rugby Union
In simple words, Rugby is a game where one team passes the ‘rugby ball’ within their players to score points and the opposition team tries and stops them doing that and vice versa.
Basic viewing understanding of Rugby
Here are some basic points which will help you to not only understand the game, but also will help you to have a viewing pleasure.
Forward Pass or Knock On
The ball can not travel forward from the player’s hands in any case. It has to be passed either on the side or backwards always. The only way you can move the ball forward is by kicking the ball or by carrying it forward. If a player breaks this rule the referee will award the ‘Scrum’ to the opposition team.
You must have watched a bunch of player’s just forcing each other in a big circle whenever you have watched a rugby game on your TV screen. Well, that exactly what the ‘scrum’ is. The scrum involves 15 players which are also known as forward pack. They bind do gather. Each time will put their three players in front, four in the middle and remaining one at the back of the scrum. The team, which has not broken the rule will put the ball in this scrum and players involved in the scrum try and take the ball to their side by their legs. All the time the scrum should remain alive if not the referee may ask to repeat the action. Most of the time the team, which has not made the fault wins the scrum, it has been observed.
When the big boys of rugby fight it out for the rugby ball, tackling each other is bound to happen. You must have seen big guys tackling another big guy and falling on the ground here and there. Tackling of an opposition player is legally allowed in rugby, but with certain rules. First is that the player should not tackle the other player around his neck or above. Second, the player should not mount on the opponent player’s head while intending to tackle him and third, the tackle should either be done by hands or shoulders or just shoulders.
When the player who has the possession of the ball is tackled by the opposition, he must release it immediately to the next man, that is what the ‘ruck’ is all about. The ball should remain in play even if you are down on the floor by the tackling. The ball must be possessed by another player from his side of the field only and he should not touch the ball till it is secured by one team or it should be outside the ruck.
This is the easiest part to understand in the game of rugby. Even if you don’t care about Scrum, Tackle or Ruck you can still enjoy the game by knowing that every team plays the game of rugby to earn ‘try’. When a player reaches the crossing or goal line and touches the ball on the ground, it is called ‘try’. The try worth FIVE points each. Then the team gets a chance for the conversion. In conversion a player kicks the ball and tries to post it between the two long poles on the goal line. If done successfully the team earns further two points. Apart from these two a team can score two points by scoring the penalties as well. When another team fouls a player kicks the ball in the same manner of the ‘conversion’ and can score out of the penalty.
Major Rugby Tournaments to watch
Rugby World Cup
Involves 24 nations from Europe, the Americas, Africa, Asia and Oceana.
Formerly known as Five Nations. The tournament involves European teams of England, France, Italy, Scotland, Wales and Ireland
Six European Cup play for the prestigious Heineken Cup.
British and Irish Lions Tour
British and Irish Lions team tour Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The winners of the series get the Tom Richards Cup.
Test Series between Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, British teams and Argentina are also worth watching.
Rugby teams have different names too. Like British Team is known as Lions, New Zealand as All Blacks, South Africa as Springboks and Australians as Wallabies.