Popular Sports In Tonga Essay

1335 words - 5 pages

Tonga is made up of 176 islands that are scattered over 270,000 square miles of the South Pacific Ocean. The country is known as the Friendly Islands. The country of Tonga has many sports teams. Some of the most popular sports ingratiated into the culture of Tonga are rugby, surfing, and cricket.
The most famous sport in Tonga is rugby. Rugby is often thought to be a combination of American football and soccer, but in-fact is not as close as commonly believed. Rugby was started in England and spread to other countries like Ireland, Wales, Scotland, New Zealand, Australia, France, Canada, South Africa, and the U.S. over the years. It is said that the game of rugby was started in 1823 by William Webb Ellis, when he broke the common rules of the day that the ball can only be kicked forward and proceeded to pick up the ball and run with it in a game this created the basis for the ball handling rules in Rugby. The way that the ball is handled sets the game apart from its origin soccer. While the sport of rugby was still fairly new more rule changes helped make the sport more distinctive. The most prominent of these is the offside rule which states that all players that are in the play must be behind the ball. Rugby is played on a field that is 110 yards long and 75 yards wide. The time allotted for the game consists of two forty minute halves. Rugby is a sport played with an oval shaped ball that may be picked up and handled with the hands or kicked at any time. The game is played with fifteen players on the field from each team. There are multiple positions in rugby they are split into two different groups. One group consisting of the smaller more agile players called backs. The positions for the backs are scrum half, fly half, inside center, outside center, left wing, right wing, and fullback. The forwards consist of the bigger and stronger players. The positions for the forwards consist of two locks, a hooker, an eightman, two props, and two flankers. While the ball is in play it can not be passed forward or knocked forward in an attempt to catch it this is called a knock-on. A knock-on results in the other team receiving the ball and starting form the point of offense. If the ball or the player holding the ball goes out of bounds then the opposite gets the opportunity to throw the ball in to their team mates this is called a throw in. If a throw in occurs a player stands out of bounds and must try and throw the ball overhead to one of their teammates. The only teammates that are eligible to have the ball passed to them are a player who is lifted into the air by his teammates, or one other player standing behind them. A scrum happens when any penalty or encroachment of the rules occur. A scrum consists of the forwards binding together and trying to force the opposing team off the ball so the scrum half can grab it and make a play. The purpose of the game is to touch the ball down in the try zone to score 6 points. After a try is scored the scoring...

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