1. Playing Field
1.1 The AFL Footy 9s Carnival will be played on a rugby field, using rugby posts as the goals.
1.2 A line known as the boundary line shall mark the boundary of the playing field.
1.3 The longer line shall be called the side line.
1.4 The shorter line shall be called the goal line.
2.1 Teams consist of 9 players on the field and a maximum of 3 reserves.
2.2 Interchange of players may take place at any time.
2.3 Teams consist of 3 forwards, 3 midfielders and 3 backs.
2.4 At the start of play and after each goal, the midfielders must line up in the centre of the playing field.
2.5 At the start of play and after each goal, the forwards and backs must line up behind the 20 metre line.
2.6 Teams must have 2 females on the field at all times.
3. Playing Time
3.1 Each match consists of 2 x 12 minute halves, with a quick switch of ends replacing half-time.
4. Start of Play
4.1 The game is started by a jump ball between two players in the centre of the playing field.
4.2 A player may not grab the ball at the jump ball and play on. They must attempt to knock or tap the ball to another player.
4.3 After a goal, the ball is taken back to the centre and restarted as in rule 4.1.
4.4 All players are required to start in their zones before play can commence.
5.1 A Goal (1 point) is scored by kicking the ball through the posts.
5.2 If the ball hits any part of the posts and continues through the posts, it is a goal.
5.3 If the ball hits any part of the posts and comes back into the field of play, play will continue.
5.4 Goals scored by female players are worth 2 points (super goals).
6. Missed Shot for Goal
6.1 After an unsuccessful shot at goal by the attacking team, a member of the defending team shall bring the ball back into play via a kick, from directly in front of the posts.
6.2 When kicking the ball back into play, the player with the ball cannot play on.
6.3 The player with the ball must kick the ball within the goal area before the 5 metre line.
6.4 The man on the mark must be no closer than 10m from the player kicking the ball back into play.
6.5 When kicking the ball back into play, the player with the ball shall not be permitted to kick the ball beyond the 50 metre line.
6.6 If the ball is kicked beyond the 50 metre line, a free kick shall be awarded to a member of the opposing team. The free kick will be awarded in the centre of the field, with the player on the mark standing on the 50 metre line.
7. Out of Bounds
7.1 When the ball goes out of bounds by either foot or hand, anywhere along the side line, the nearest opponent shall kick (not handball) the ball back into play.
7.2 If there is doubt as to which team forced the ball out of bounds, the umpire shall throw the ball up.
7.3 No score will be allowed when kicked from an out of bounds free kick.
8. Corner Kicks – Deliberate Out of Bounds (goal line)
8.1 If a member of the attacking team knocks the ball over the goal line, a member of the defending team shall bring the ball back into play via a kick, from directly in front of the posts.
8.2 However, if a member of the defending team is deemed to have deliberately knocked the ball over the goal line, a free kick (corner kick) will result.
8.3 The corner kick will take place at the intersection of the goal line and side line i.e. the corner of the rugby field.
8.4 Opposition members must be no closer than 10 metres from the player taking the corner kick.
8.5 The player taking the corner kick has two options – to kick the ball to a teammate or to attempt a shot for goal.
8.6 As soon as the player taking the corner kick steps into the field of play, the umpire shall call play on.
9. No Tackling or Rough Play
9.1 No tackling or general rough play is allowed. At no stage are you permitted to be overly physical with an opponent. This rule applies in particular to protect less experienced participants, and those who are new to the game.
9.2 Please remember all players owe a duty of care to each other. Players must approach congested situations with caution rather than hitting them at full pace.
9.3 As it is a non-contact competition the following acts are not permitted and will result in an automatic free kick:
a. shoving someone in the back
b. going for hangers (high marks) by jumping on people
c. lifting your knee in a marking contest
d. charging or running through people
e. hard shepherds (soft shepherds by putting your arms out like a basketball screen are OK)
f. holding or grabbing your opponent
g. diving on the ball in the vicinity of other players, causing them to fall over
i. diving in front of a player in an attempt to smother their kick
Please note it makes no difference whether contact is intentional or not. By way of example, if you dive on the ball and someone falls over you as a result, the free kick will be paid against you. We are here to have fun, not injure each other.
10. Prior Opportunity
10.1 When a player is touched by an opponent, they have a maximum of 3 seconds to dispose of the ball by handballing or kicking. If the player fails to dispose of the ball within this period, possession will be awarded to the other team.
10.2 How much time the umpire allows a player to dispose of the ball depends on the circumstances and is solely at the discretion of the umpire. As an example, midfield players contesting the ball after a jump ball in the centre of the ground will normally be given a bit more time as it is a congested situation.
10.3 If a player has had prior opportunity to dispose of the ball when touched, it is holding the ball and a turnover will occur. An example of this is when a player attempts to evade their opponent in open play, and is touched. In this situation a free kick will be awarded.
10.4 If the umpire deems that a player has been touched at the same time as he/she takes possession of the ball, the player in possession will have the usual 3 seconds to dispose of the ball.
10.5 A legal touch can only occur between the shoulders and knees.
Please note for this rule to apply players must be in possession of the ball. If a player is not in possession of the ball, a free kick for ‘prior opportunity’ or ‘holding the ball’ will not be awarded.
11. Marking & Safe Zone
11.1 Any player catching a ball directly from the kick of another player, provided the ball has travelled at least 10 metres, shall be awarded a mark.
11.2 If a player is clearly about to mark the ball from a kick, a defending player is not permitted to come from behind and spoil the mark. The defending player must back off and allow their opponent to complete the mark. This is known as the safe zone.
12. Bouncing the Ball
12.1 A player in possession must bounce the ball after running with it for 10 metres.
12.2 A player in possession may bounce the ball only once.
13. Kicking Off the Ground
13.1 A player is not permitted to deliberately kick the ball off the ground.
13.2 If a player makes contact with the ball with his foot during the course of play, and it is deemed accidental, the umpire shall call ‘play on’ and play shall continue.
13.3 For safety reasons, players are also not permitted to kick the ball in the air i.e. whilst the ball is not in possession by either team.