I don’t think there is no other game where 30 players play on a field at the same time. Rugby is a game where each team consists of 15 players. And for someone who has never watched a single game of rugby, it will be difficult for them to understand which player is doing what? So, whats rugby positions? In this article, we will discuss that for beginners.
For a rookie rugby player, the first thing is to know about the positions in rugby. There are 15 players in a team, and these 15 players have different roles and responsibilities. So before coming to the detail of the positions, here are the 15 rugby positions.
There are 8 attackers and 7 defenders. The rugby 7s positions consist of three forwards and four backs.
Here are the positions and responsibilities of rugby players.
1. Loose-head Prop and Tight-head Prop
These two players are in the front row in the position. You can say that these two players lead the team. In rugby scrum, these two positions are important as the hooker also. Players who play in these positions are the biggest rugby players. Their main responsibility is to stop the opponent’s scrum. They also support the scrum and prevent the opposition from getting the ball. In addition, they clear the path so that their team can score.
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The position of the hooker is between the loosehead prop and the tighthead prop, and they lead the team from the middle. When it comes to scrum rugby, the hooker not only leads the team but also makes the decision for the forwards. There are two major responsibilities of a hooker. The first one is to gain possession in the scrum, and the second is that they pass the ball through the prop’s legs so that the team has possession.
3. Second Row (2)
There are two second row players, or you can say forwards. They are the main source of power, so they are called the engine room and also locks. As they are the target, second row players need to be powerful and tall. Their timing and techniques make them the best. Unlike props, these two players need to bind tightly. Otherwise, they will lose control over the ball.
4. Blind-side Flanker and Open-side Flanker
As you can see, the name flanker, so you can understand that there are no specific or major responsibilities of these players. But, these flankers have various tasks in a game. So, these players need to be good with handling balls and tackling skills, strong and fast. The position of these two players is on the sidelines beside the second row. Their responsibilities are making tackles, collecting passes, and winning the ball in the mauls and ruck.
5. Number 8
The number 8 rugby player plays behind the second row. They are like the flankers with no specific responsibility. With the two flankers, the number 8 rugby player makes a position called back row. The player needs to be good at tackling and supporting play, and the most important skill is carrying the ball. One of the responsibilities of the number 8 is to bind the front row and the defenders.
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6. Scrum Half
One of the most important rugby positions is the scrum half. As they connect the backs and forwards. When it comes to building attacks, this is the key player. The main position of the player is to play behind the forward. They are also responsible for controlling the ball, and when the ball is in the back, they also cover the space. These players need good speed, awareness, and vision. Also, they need to be quick.
7. Fly Half
The fly half in a rugby team is the most important. When it comes to organizing defense or the opponent is attacking, this player needs to play as a lead. On the other hand, when the team goes for the attack, the player kicks the ball. The player decides when to pass the ball from the center. They tell players to take specific positions, organize the back line and change the plays.
8. Left Winger and Right Winger
These two players play on the outermost part of the field. On the one hand, these two players are sideline defenders, and on the other hand, they have the responsibilities to score when the team is attacking. In addition, these two players need enough stamina because they constantly run up and down. So, wingers need speed with stamina. And the most important thing is that these players are in the spotlight.
9. Inside Center and Outside Center
These two players play behind the fly half. And in the middle of the two wingers. Their first responsibility is to find gaps in the opposition’s defense. In an attack, these players run in a direct line. The first thing they do is break the defensive line. Like the wingers, they also try to score. The other responsibility is to create spaces and draw the attention of the opposition so that there will be opportunities for the teammates.
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10. Full Back
A full back plays at the far most of the formation. The player is responsible for defense, as there is no one behind the player. They are also called sweepers. Their first work is to receive kicks from the opposition. Next, they must be sure of catching the ball. After that, they have to launch the ball quickly. They are also the kicker of the team. In modern rugby positions, a full back needs to be an all rounder.
I hope next time you watch a rugby match, you will have no problem understanding rugby positions and which player has what responsibilities. Most people say that the most important and influential position is the fly-half. Also, the six nine position are the scrum half and the blind-side flanker.
However, when it comes to rugby league, there are only 13 players playing for each team. And in union rugby, there are 15 players on each team. So, rugby union positions and rugby league positions are different.
If you want to know more about rugby positions, then you can let us know in the comment section below.