World Sports Weekly #4 – Australian Football!

By: Liam Paul

Have you ever been at a restaurant or any other place, and seen a random sport with men that have really short shorts and punt the ball into a goal? If so, that sport is Australian Football, often referred to as AFL, as the AFL is the sport’s largest league.  It is based on rugby, but just like American football, it deviates a lot.

The sport started in 1858, when an Australian named Thomas Wentworth Wills wanted to find something for Australian cricketers to do in winter.  The sport then grew and spread across Australia.  There are teams all across the country, and there was a league for all teams called the Elite competition.  In 1990, however, the league was renamed to what it is called today, the AFL, short for Australian Football League.  Today, it is also the national sport of Australia.

There are 18 clubs in the AFL.  Each year, they play 22 games in a regular season, in stadiums in the capital cities of every Australian province.  Every year in september, the 2 best teams play in the grand final, for 100,000 fans at the MCG in Melbourne.

The sport is played with an oval, leather ball similar to the ball used in Rugby.  It is played on an oval of grass, but unlike many other sports, there is not as much regulation on the field size (for example the stadium in Melbourne’s pitch is a different size than the one in Sydney).  The field is marked by an oval around the outside to mark the boundaries, 2 semicircles on either side, a circle in the middle surrounded by a square, and a goal square on either side of the pitch.  There are goalposts on either side of the goal square.

There are 22 players per team.  18 players start, and 4 are on the bench.  Each player has a different position depending on his size, and skills.  Usually, 6 players are in the defensive line, 6 are on the offensive line, and 6 are in the midfield.  As there are more than 10 different positions, I will not list them all.

The object of the game is to get more goals than the other team.  Goals are scored by the forwards.  The midfield’s job is to get the ball and give it to the forwards.  As you cannot throw in AFL, they must hit the ball, much like a serve in volleyball.  The defenders match up to the opposing team’s forwards, and try and get the ball away from them.  A cool thing about AFL is that it is commonplace for a defender to kick goals.  There are also 9 umpires.  6 points are awarded for a direct goal through the middle posts, and any other kind of goal is 1 point.

Today’s matchup was the 2014 AFL grand finals.  The teams were the Sydney Swans and the Hawthorn Hawks.  The Hawks won the grand final for the second time of 2 years.  Hawthorn forward Jarryd Roughhead kicked 5.1 goals in the 63 point victory.

The stunning, sweaty-looking image above can be found HERE, a great sporty site.

Bandy!

By: Liam P.

World Sports Weekly #3

Bandy is a sport played on the ice, mainly in Scandinavia and Russia.  The best comparison the sport would make would be to ice hockey, as the goal is the same (to get the  puck/ball into the opposing team’s goal), the surfaces are the same, and the goals are the same.  However, there are a couple of differences, including a curved stick, the use of a ball instead of a puck, and the fact that the goalkeeper does not have a stick.

As with all top tier sport leagues in Sweden, the top tier Bandy league is called Elitserien.  This is where this week’s matchup was.  The teams playing were Kalix and Tillberga.  Kalix won 8 to 6, scoring 3 goals in the first half and 5 in the second.  Tillberga only scored 1 in the 1st half, but also scored 5 in the second.  This helped Kalix retain its 1st place position in group B of the Elitserien Bandy playoffs. The following very cool graphic image for the League can be found here.

 

Elitserien, the host place of the latest Bandy game, is a well known authority of the awesome sport.

Elitserien, the host place of the latest Bandy game, is a well known authority of the awesome sport.

Cricket!!

World Sports Weekly #2

By Liam Paul

I don’t understand cricket, as most Americans don’t, but I thought I might as well give this a try. What is now called the sport of Cricket originally was played by children in England and the surrounding area. Now, it is a sport played by adults in mainly Britain, India, and Sri Lanka. The match covered in this article is between England and India, 2 of the top Cricket national teams.

I had to look it up, but the scoring in cricket works like this: there are 2 things that determine the winner of a game. These are number of runs scored and number of wickets conceded. The game is set up so that there is a rectangle in the pitch, and the bowler, one batsman (of 2), and the scorekeeper stand on one side. On the other side, the other batsman, or the “striker” as he’s known, hits the ball when the bowler bowls it. Then, if no fielder catches it, the other batsman runs back and forth within the rectangle. If a fielder catches the ball, then the striker is out, and is replaced. If the ball makes it to the catcher, behind the striker, it is called a wicket. Of course, there are more rules, but I do not have enough time or patience to explain them.

The match in question happened on september 5. It was between England and India. This is part of the Indian national team’s tour of England. So far, India’s bowlers have been untested, due to poor batting from England. That may be the reason that England won this game. In the words of the Epoch times, The final score line was — England: 294/7 (50), India: 253/10 (48.4).

How motivated is India? WILL THEY WIN?

India scored a losing 48.4 in the game. How does one score a 48.4?

England wins the game with a whopping 50 points against India in the Cricket game!

England wins the game with a whopping 50 points against India in the Cricket game!

IK Start vs Odds Bk – Spots update!

World Sports Weekly #1:
IK Start vs Odds Bk
 Hello, and welcome to World Sports Weekly! This
column is where you’ll find a new world sports matchup
every week. Today, the matchup is IK Start, from
Kristiansand, VS Odds BK, from in Tippeligaen, which
is the Norwegian Premier league for Fotbol/Football/
Futbol/Soccer, whatever you want to call it. IK Start
is a club, and a Derby match, which means a rivalry.
 Espen Hoff, a striker for Start, said he would
“make this a game”, but, unfortunately he did not. The
only goal by Start in the 4-1 loss was scored by Espen
Børufsen, the left midfielder.

Team ODD's logo.

Team ODD’s logo.

Team Start's logo.

Team Start’s logo.

Liam Sport

The Tippeligaen Sport’s column feature.