A beginner's guide to rugby rules

Rugby, whether Union or League, is inherently complicated when compared to other team sports such as hockey or netball. If you’re new to the world of rugby and want a quick go-through of the basic rules, here’s everything you need to know to get started.

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The basics of the game

The aim is to score points by scoring goals or tries in the opponents goal area. Each team has 15 players (13 in Rugby League) and play takes place over two halves of 40 minutes. Unlike football, the ball can be held and passed as well as kicked but whilst it can be kicked in any direction, it can only be thrown sideways or backwards, never forwards. A forwards pass will result in a scrum for the other team. Staying onside is arguably more of a point in rugby than it is in football.

How to score

Unlike …