How to Fake Your Way Through a Rugby Match

Men's Health |


This is for ‘rugbiginners ‘ or newbies, be it men, girlfriends, husbands or wives, who might feel left out due to their minimal knowledge of Rugby, from the usual rugby slang, to the different positions and rules.

This is a simple guide as to what to do and what not to do or say; which could come in handy if you’re invited to a braai during the Rugby World Cup. If you’re nervous about watching the match with a group of rugby-enthusiasts then this is definitely for you.

What You Should Not Do

  • Steer clear from player’s names as well as information about their provincial teams (that could piss your friends off).
  • Never defend the referee, keep any positive comment about the referee to yourself.
  • Do not ask anything about the rules.
  • Stay away from asking questions like: How many points is a try or a penalty kick? The score is generally on the top left hand corner of the screen so you can just work it out.
  • Probably the most annoying question that anyone could ask is: Are we winning? This would only lead to a complicated and technical answer, which could go on for hours.
  • Do not wear a provincial or All Black rugby jersey.
  • Ladies, this one is for you; do not comment on player’s looks. Not only will your partner grimace at this but if you’re watching the game with his boys; it will annoy them too.

What You Should Do

  • Find a player that you can remember like Patrick Lambie or Tendai “Beast’’ Mtawarira and ask questions about them.
  • Do some research on the players, squad and coaches.
  • Use buzz words like ‘forward pass’.
  • Always know the penalty kicker’s name, hint: it will always be number 10 or 15.
  • Shout out terms like ‘run it’, ‘kick it’ or ‘pass the (insert curse word) ball’. This is the only time that sounding like a jock comes in handy.
  • When a penalty is awarded, ask questions like; is he going for the poles? Or should we set out the line out?
  • Shout ‘Beast’ when Tendai has the ball, I am sure you have heard many people shout this.
  • When there is a lull in the conversation, utter something along the lines of-: Is it just me or do the boys look really tired, determined or frustrated? That ref though, am I right?

Last but not least, go and enjoy a chop and dop with the guys around the fire whilst watching some good rugby (or so we hope).

Alice Paulse