Mike Schmid (Director of Rugby, Esher RFC) gives expert video advice on: What are forwards?; What are the main jobs of the forwards?; What are backs? and more...
What are forwards?
Forwards consist of eight players competing for loose head prop, hooker, tight head prop, two second rows, two flankers, and a number eight.
What are the main jobs of the forwards?
The main job for the forwards are simply scrummaging and lineout or set piece play, rucking, and supporting those backs.
What are backs?
There are seven back positions, one scrum half, one fly half, two midfield players, two wingers and a fullback.
What are the main jobs of the backs?
With the backs, we want them to be able to run and pass. They are generally more skilful players, and they're generally the people who decide how much the game is won by.
Who captains a side?
The captain is generally somebody who leads by example, who is also a leader of men and can motivate and demonstrate good examples of behavior.
What does cap mean?
A cap is a term for an international appearance, so players will accumulate a number of caps during their career, which tells you how many international games that they've been a part of. Some countries award an actual cap per appearance or for your first appearance for your country.
What is a prop, and what do they do?
Props are generally big burly men that fight throughout the length of the game, both in scrummages and in lineout's. They're obviously responsible for trying to get their scrummage forward, trying to lift the jumpers in the lineout, as well as supporting play around the park.
What is a hooker, and what do they do?
Hookers have the unique pleasure of being the tough guys up front, as well as being expected to run and handle like a back or a forward. So a hooker will be in the centre of the scrum, with a prop on each side. He'll also be responsible for throwing the ball into the line-out, as well as making impact around the park.
What is a lock, and what do they do?
A lock, or a second row, comes in behind the front row of the scrum. There's two of them that bind together, come in underneath to give support to those front row boys. As well as, they generally occupy jumping position of the lineout. And, again, are expected to be an impact around the park.
What is a flanker, and what do they do?
Flankers generally are some of your better athletes on a team, your well-rounded athletes. In that, they're expected to do the grunt work up front, be able to be very skilful with the ball in hand, and also be able to be very fit.
What is a number eight, and what do they do?
A number eight is generally the back person you scrim. He's generally going to be an athlete. He's, again, going to be a ball handler. He marshals the forwards, and he's a link player between the forwards and backs. He can be a jumper in your lineout, or a supporter, but he's generally a good athlete, and generally a leader on your side as well.
What is a scrum half, and what do they do?
Scrum halves carry a very important role. They link the force to the backs. They've got to do such things as putting the ball in the scrum. Marshalling the forwards and drives in front of them. Organizing the defence and they provide that very crucial link between forwards and backs.
What is a winger, and what do they do?
Wingers should be the fastest guys on your team. They're the guys that need to finish off scores for you, they're the guys that need to cover, and they're the guys that when they have some space, they're going to run.
What is a centre, and what do they do?
There are two centres of both inside and outside. The inside centre is generally heavier and stockier who's requirements are to carry the ball up as and when need be. He also generally can lead your defensive system. Your outside centre can be a little bit quicker, a little bit faster, somebody you can actually put into space. Both have to be very skilful. They both have be able to distribute. Both have to be able to pass off both hands, run and kick when required.
What is a full back, and what do they do?
Your full back is your last line of defense. He's the man that sits behind everything. Defensively, he organizes and communicates to the boys in front of him. Attacking wise, he can come into play as a first receiver, as an outside support. He's got to be quick, he's got to be skillful, he's got to be able to kick, and he's got to be able to catch.