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Australian Rules Football

The Game, Rules and History

Australian Rules Football is sort of a combination of rugby and soccer, but not exactly. Some refer to it at "Aussie Rules" or "footy".

This sport has evolved from earlier forms of Rugby and Gaelic football, but picked up its characteristics from Australia. The official rules of Aussie Rules were set up in 1858.

The point of Australian Rules Football is to score the most points. The game is played on a 150 metres field with four posts on opposite ends. Six points are given for each goal and one point for each behind.

A goal is when a player kicks the ball through the two center posts. A behind is when a player kicks through a center post and one of the small posts beside the center post.

The game starts with a "ball up." The referee bounces the ball up between the two ruckmen. The players must then work to get control of the football and score until time runs out.

A player may pass the ball by "punching it" [passing it by hand] or kicking it. The players will kick the ball in order to pass it long distances to their teammates.

If any player catches a pass of more than 10 meters length, then he makes a "mark". He is then allowed to kick the ball from where he caught it with no interference.

A player with the ball may be tackled by any of the opposing players, unless he made a mark. The player must try to pass the ball while being tackled or else he will be penalized for "holding the ball".

Aussie Rules keeps in constant action unless stopping when a goal is scored, the ball goes out of bounds, or in the frequent event when too many players are piled up and no one can find the ball.

Now you know the basics, here is where you will find the latest Australian Rules Football news, clubs and events: