The Rules of Australian Rules Football

There are few more popular sports in Australia tha

A Football Report
The Rules of Australian Rules Football

There are few more popular sports in Australia than Australian Rules Football. The sport is commonly known by fans as Footy, with the contact sport having been played in the nation since its inception in 1859. The first match played in the sport was competed in Melbourne, and nowadays over one million players are registered across the nation.

In total, 25,770 teams are also registered to compete, meaning that the popularity of the sport remains at an all-time high in this modern day. Aussie Rules Football is one of the most popular sports for bets at However, if you’re thinking about having a flutter on a game, then first you need to learn a little more about the sport.

The Field

Australian Rules is typically played on a modified cricket pitch, which enables a high attendance for some of the biggest fixtures on the calendar. At the senior level, pitches are typically between 135 and 138 meters long, and between 110 and 155 meters wide. Unlike standard football played across the rest of the world, the pitch is shaped as an oval, and the shape of the ball is identical to that.

In total, there will be 18 players on the pitch for each team at a given time, while in AFL Women’s matches, this number stands at 16. In total, teams can make four interchanges over the duration of the match, with players waiting to be called into the game ‘sitting on the bench’.

Match Duration

Unlike standard football played across Europe and the rest of the world, Australian Rules Football takes inspiration from North American sports, as the matches are divided into quarters. Each quarter in the professional game lasts for 20 minutes, with the timer being paused at key moments in the game such as a goal being scored, or the ball going out of bounds. The match will also be paused should a serious injury occur at any stage.

At any point when the game is paused, the timer is resumed after the official indicates the clock to start again. Stoppage time is also added on at the end of each quarter, with typically between five and ten minutes added on at the end of each period. Players will have six minutes to recover before the second and fourth quarters, while 20 minutes of recovery time is allowed at the half-time break.

Scoring Points

The game gets underway after the coin toss determines the direction in which the teams will play. A siren indicates that the game has got underway, with the official bouncing the ball on the ground. Scoring points in Australian Rules is the trickiest test, as both sides will look to outscore their rival in a given game.

A goal is scored when the ball to kicked through the goalposts at any height by kicking it, and it is worth six points. However, a point can also be scored on a ‘behind’, which is where the ball passes through the goal post and the behind post at any height. A behind is also scored if the ball touches an opposing player after leaving the boot of a player.

The decision as to whether a goal is awarded or not is made by the goal umpire. If the decision is for the goal to count, then the official will lift two hands pointed out at elbow height. Both flags are also waved to indicate that a goal has been scored. Depending on the competition, a draw will signal the start of extra time. However, this only happens in final matches in certain competitions on the calendar. Regular season games will end in a draw with the points being shared by the teams involved. However, the vast majority of the most popular games are the finals, including the Grand Final.

Popular Competitions

Australian Rules is popular throughout the year, with games taking place in the Australian winter between March and August. The finals in the competition are typically held in September and October. Many fans of the sport watch the AFL competitions, which sees the best players in the sport collide for the ultimate honor of winning the Premiership.

Teams that finish the regular season in the highest positions will clash in the semi-knockout, before the final two teams compete in the Grand Final, to determine the best Aussie Rules side in the country over the course of a season. With so many games to bet on throughout the season, it’s not hard to see why fans from all over the world have become fascinated with the sport.