How High Can You Score on This Aussie Football Rules Quiz?

Abi Luftig

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About This Quiz

Footy is a way of life in most of Australia. However, any Aussie who has tried to explain the rules to a newcomer knows the sport is anything but simple. Test your knowledge here!

What does AFL stand for?

AFL is the abbreviation for the Australian Football League. It was originally called the Victorian Football League, which splintered off from the Victorian Football Association.

How many quarters are in each game?

Each game of footy consists of four official quarters, all of even length. There is also extra time at the end of each game, the length of which depends on how the quarters went.

How long is each quarter?

Each quarter in a football game is 20 minutes long. The game can be stopped for extreme injuries, balls going out of bounds or scores. The players have 6 minutes between each quarter to recover.

When were the official AFL rules first written?

While it would not be called the AFL for nearly a century, the sport began in Australia in approximately 1858. It was originally called the Victorian Football League, and what was called "Victorian rules" became the oldest written code of rules in football history.

What shape is the football ground?

Unlike UK and American football, which are both played on rectangles, Aussie footy is played on an oval field. Regulations state that the oval must be "between 135–185 metres in length and 110–155 metres in width".

How many posts are at each end of the ground?

There are four posts at each end of the field which are used for scoring. The distance between each post is exactly 6.4 meters

Where is a legal zone to tackle?

It is expressly against the rules to tackle players below the knees or above the shoulders. As a rule, aim for the abdomen and the tackle will be allowed.

How many meters are you allowed to run with the ball before incurring a penalty?

Players are allowed to run while carrying the ball, but the ball must bounce or touch the ground every 15 meters. Options for getting rid of the ball include kicking, bouncing or hitting it with your hand.

What is the term for when a ball is dropped and kicked before it hits the ground?

The drop punt is the most common kick used in Aussie Rules Football because it is considered to be the most accurate. The ball turns end over end, which makes it easier for teammates to follow the ball and catch it.

What is the name for a kick that makes sure the ball rolls and skids along the ground?

Grubbers are a type of kick that makes the ball roll and skid along the ground. It makes it harder for the opposition to pick up the ball, but it also is less accurate and harder to control.

What is the term for a type of punt that causes the ball to spin on its long side?

A torpedo punt causes the ball to spin on its long axis, making it travel farther but harder to catch. It's also called a spiral, barrel or screw punt.

What is the name of the kick that uses the inside of the player’s foot?

The banana, also called the snap, is a kick that goes across the body to go sideways in a helicopter spin. They are usually used to score shots on goal from a player on the run.

What is the name of the kick that uses the outside of the player’s foot?

The checkside punt is considered to be a "cousin of the banana," and is far more difficult to pull off. The ball is kicked away from the body by the outside of the player's foot.

What is the mark?

A mark occurs when a player catches a ball and is awarded possession. The mark is when the ball travels 15 meters without being touched before it is caught. Each year, an award is given for The Mark of The Year.

How many points are awarded if the ball is kicked in between the two large goalposts?

If a kick lands in between the two big posts, it is worth 6 points. If it hits one of the large posts, that's one point. If it goes between one big post and one small post, it's also worth one point. If it hits a small post, that's no points. If a player touches it before it goes over the line, that is also one point.

When do teams change sides of the ground?

Aussie Rules dictate that teams switch sides of the field at the end of each quarter. This is similar to American football, but different from British football, where the teams switch at halftime.

How many players are on each team?

Each team has 22 players who are chosen to play. 18 players go onto the field, and the remaining four are on the bench waiting to interchange.

Who enforces the rules?

Each game has three umpires, with each concentrating on one-third of the field. The primary responsibility of the umpires is start play, enforce penalties and award marks.

What is it called when the ball goes through one big goal post and one short one?

The shorter posts are set farther back than the taller goal posts and are often referred to as behind posts. "Behind" has come to mean any score worth one point, such as the ball hitting the post or being touched by an opposing player.

When a team wins a game, how many points are they awarded on the premiership table?

If a team wins a game, they are awarded four points on the premiership table. If the game ends in a draw or tie, each team gets two points.

Which is not a type of player?

Forwards stay close to their team's scoring posts and score goals. Midfielders get the ball from the defenders to the forwards. Defenders stay close to the opposing team's scoring posts and try to block their scoring attempts.

How many “home and away” matches are in a regular season?

Regular season games are referred to as "home and aways" and each season has 23 of these games. This doesn't count the games that make up the four rounds of finals.

How many teams move on to the finals rounds?

Teams are eliminated when they lose. This goes on until there are only 2 teams left, which face off in the AFL Grand Final.

Are AFL players allowed to throw the ball?

Similar to the rules of British football, players are not allowed to throw the ball. However, they are allowed to punch it off their palm, similar to a volleyball serve.

What does the umpire do to start the game?

The central bounce has been compared to a tip-off in basketball, where the ref/ump throws the ball and members of the opposing team jump up and try to hit it toward their teammates. In footy, the ball is thrown down so it bounces up. There is a coin toss, but it is to determine starting goals.

Which team wins the game?

Because different types of goals are worth different point values, it's entirely possible for the team with fewer goals to win the game. This is when strategy comes into play while scoring.

What is the penalty for pushing another player in the back?

In a move aimed to lower serious injury, especially in kid leagues, the AFL decided that pushing a player in the back would result in a free kick for the team of the player who was pushed. It is important that if a player is tackled from the behind, they are not sent downward or forward at all because that will counted as a push.

How close must players be for shepherding to be allowed?

Shepherding is when players clear a path for their teammate by getting the opposing team out of the way, usually by way of hip and shoulder bumping. It is similar to screening in basketball or blocking in American football.

What is a lead?

When a player runs from the goal front toward the center of the ground, this is called a lead. Its purpose is to provide a target to kick to for the midfielders bringing the ball up.

In which city is the Grand Final traditionally held?

Melbourne is the home of Aussie Football, and it is tradition to host the Grand Final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on the last Sunday in September. This is contractually guaranteed until 2037.

Traditionally, what does the winning team do after they win?

Tradition states that when a team wins, they return to the clubrooms, link arms and sing their club song. There's no official tradition for the losing team.

Until 2016, what was the rule if the Grand Final ended in a tie?

Until 2016, the rule was that if the Grand Final ended in a draw, the entire match would be replayed the following week until someone one. However, in 2016, the AFL ruled that draws would now be settled with the use of extra time until a winner was established.

How does the umpire determine the initial goal for each team?

As previously stated, the umpires do flip a coin at the beginning of the game. It determines which team is aiming for which goal for the first quarter of the game.

Which day is a public holiday?

Footy is so popular that the Friday before the Grand Final has become a public holiday. This is due to the parade that takes place the Friday before the game and the incredible attendance it draws.

What sound signals the end of play?

Sirens are used to signal the beginning and end of each quarter. The AFL siren sounds similar to a train whistle.

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