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Rugby Primer
Sevens and Tens
Scrum.com
March 28, 1901
Wales celebrate winning the 2009 Rugby World Cup Sevens following their 19-12 victory over Argentina in the tournament finale in Dubai, The Sevens Stadium, Dubai, UAE, March 7, 2009
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Related Links
Features: Rugby Dictionary
Features: Fifteens Players
Features: Lineouts
Features: Penalties
Features: Rucks and Mauls
Features: Running and Tries
Features: Scrums
Features: Starting the Game
Features: Tactical Kicking
Features: The Playing Field
Players/Officials: K.A. O'Regan

Sevens is typically played only during tournaments. A sevens match consists of two seven minute halves and is a much faster game than fifteens due to the smaller number of players on a standard sized pitch providing ample running space. The players on a sevens team are as follows:

Forwards
#1 Prop
#2 Hooker
#3 Prop

Backs
#4 Scrum-half
#5 Fly-half
#6 Centre
#7 Wing

The same general game principles are used except tactics are quite different. Scrums feature only opposing front rows. Rucks and mauls are very fast and small, with defense and tackling of paramount importance to reduce the many opportunities for breaks. One major difference from fifteens is that after a penalty goal or try is scored, the ball is kicked to the non-scoring team from the 50 metre line to restart play.

Tens is played with ten players in combinations of either 5 forwards/5 backs or 3 forwards/ 7 backs. The team with the scrum feed gets to determine the number of forwards in the scrum. The opposing team is required to match them. The tens game is a little slower than sevens and has a flow much more similar to fifteens. Each of the halves is ten minutes long. Tens is also typically only played during tournaments.

This has been a very brief overview of rugby union play. There are many more aspects and facets to all three variations of the game. Training is also very necessary to ensure the safety of play. Check with your local club for practice and match times to learn more.

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