Although to the naked eye a game of Rugby Union resembles a carefully orchestrated riot between 2 sets of thuggish gentlemen – the video above demonstrates this is not actually the case. There are some rules that govern and bind the orchestrated riot.
The game of rugby is played over 80 minutes, split into two 40-minute halves.
Each team has 15 players who assume various positions, which play critical parts in the teams play.
The ball can be moved by carrying it in the hands, or kicking at any time during play, but under no circumstances can the ball be passed or made to go forward by the ball carrier other than by kicking the ball with the foot or shin. If the ball is hit or passed forward without it being kicked, it is called a “knock-on” and is a penalty which results in a scrum to the opposition.
The aim of a team is to score as many points against your opponent whilst conceding none. Points are scored by the following methods:
Tries – A try is worth 5 points and is scored by a player touching the ball down into the opponents ‘try-area’ (between the try line and dead-ball line). Tries can also be awarded as Penalty tries (where an attacking player was illegally blocked by the defending team, and pushover try (when an attacking pack, push the scrum over the oppositions try line).
Conversions – A conversion is awarded when a try is scored and allows the attacking team to gain 2 more points by kicking the ball over the posts of the rugby goal. The conversion is usually taken from the line in the field where the try was scored.
Penalty – A penalty kick scores 3 points and is awarded if a serious foul has been committed.
Drop-goal – A drop-goal scores 3 points and is a kick at goal during the run of play, where the ball is kicked just after touching the ground. These are usually scored by fly-halves.