The Australian Football League is arguably the most important sporting competition in Australia. What is now a national sport evolved from a mere domestic competition played in Victoria. Over the last quarter of a century the sporting event has transformed itself into a national league with teams based in five of the Australian states, although 10 of 17 clubs are still based in Victoria. The AFL, after Australian Rules football also known as Footy, has today become a powerful, wealthy and influential organisation in Australian sport.
The national sporting event enthusiastically watched by millions of its Australian fans witnesses 17 teams playing against each other in 24 rounds between March and September. The matches are followed by a series of finals matches which culminate in the two best teams playing off for the premiership in the AFL Grand Final, one of the largest domestic club championship events in the world.
Australian football is governed by the AFL Commission which also runs the AFL competition and the rules are decided by the AFL’s Laws of the Game Committee. The sport is also played at amateur level in several countries and in several variations.
The sport is played between 2 teams of 22 players on a ground that is often a modified cricket field. The games objective is simple. The players have to score points by passing the ball through the opponent’s major goal posts. The team that has scored the most points at the end of play wins the game. If the scores are level on points at the end of play, then the game is a draw, extra time applies only during finals matches in some competitions. Interestingly during the play the players can position themselves anywhere on the field and use any part of their body to move the ball.
However there are interesting ball handling rules as well. The player has to be on the run once in possession of the ball and never get caught. He also has to stop intermittently bounce or touch the ball on the ground. Marks are yet another interesting feature of the game where players anywhere on the field that catch a ball from a kick that travels over a certain distance are awarded a free kick.
The main attributes of the game include frequent physical contests, aerial marking, fast movement of both the players and the ball and also high scoring. Australian Rules Football relies on tackling using full body to obstruct opponents however this doesn’t allow dangerous physical contact such as interference when marking and deliberately slowing the play that are punished by free kicks, distance penalties or even suspension from future games. bet365
Australian Rules football has swept the nation and continues to grow rapidly. In 2010, there were nine AFL clubs from Melbourne, one from Victoria’s second largest city, Geelong, two teams from South Australia, two from Western Australia and one each from Sydney, New South Wales and Brisbane, Queensland. In 2011 a new team based on the Gold Coast, Queensland was added and in 2012 a team from Western Sydney will be added.