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Rugby jargons that you need to know to impress others at HSBC Singapore Rugby Sevens

Reuter Plus/ Wai Ling Au

For those of you who understand the basics of rugby but keep hearing certain words or phrases that you do not seem to understand,here are a few rugby jargons that are commonly used in the rugby community. 

1. All Blacks

This is the nickname for the New Zealand national team and is derived from their entirely black strip. The All Blacks perform a traditional Maori ceremonial dance known as the Haka before matches as a challenge to the opposing team.

2. Ankle Tap

Also known as a tap-tackle, the ankle tap is a form of tackle used when a defender cannot get close enough to the player to perform a proper tackle, instead choosing to dive and throw out an arm to deliver a tap or a hook to the ankle of the player, causing them to stumble.

3. Box Kick

This is a kick taken from behind a scrum, usually by the scrum-half or the half-back; he/she will pick up the ball from the base of the set piece and kick it behind the defensive line into a clear “box” of space. This kick, if successful, will allow his teammates to chase through and regain the ball in undefended territory.

4. Touch

Touch refers to the area outside and including the two touch-lines that defines the sides of the playing area. The touch-lines which are not part of the playing area, are considered part of touch. A touch judge, an official, will usually be found standing behind the posts and monitors the touch-line. He is the one who confirms a goal has been scored following a penalty kick or a conversion of a try, hence the touch judge will raise a flag if the ball or a player holding the ball goes into touch.

5. Drop kick

Drop kick refers to a type of kick where the ball touches the ground before it is struck. If a drop kick ends with the ball going through a goal, this will then be considered a drop goal and the team will be awarded three points.

6. Try

A try is the primary method of scoring and is worth five points. A try happens when a player places the ball on the ground with downward pressure in the in-goal area.

7. Conversion

If a team manages to score a try, they have an opportunity to convert it for an additional two more points by kicking the ball through a goal - the ball must go between the posts and above the crossbar to be considered as a conversion. While the kick can be taken at any point on the field of play, it is more advantageous to score a try nearer to the posts as it will then make it easier for the try to be converted.