Each team has a maximum of 12 athletes with no more than four players from each team on the court at any one time. Teams are mixed so you’ll see men and women playing together on the same team, another unusual and fantastic thing about wheelchair rugby.
Unlike able-bodied rugby where you’ll be familiar with an oval ball, wheelchair rugby actually uses a spherical ball. The ball’s circumference must be 65-67 centimetres and its weight must be 260-280 grams.
To score a try, an athlete must cross the opposing team’s try line in firm control of the ball. Two wheels must cross the line for it to count.
Contact between wheelchairs is permitted. Hitting an opponent’s chair behind the rear wheel and making physical contact with an opponent results in penalisation, so it’s not quite ‘anything goes’.
40-second shot clock
The team with possession of the ball has 40 seconds to score a try. This time is measured by a countdown clock.
10-second dribble violation
A player who has possession of the ball must either pass or dribble the ball at least once every 10 seconds.
Matches are played in four periods of eight minutes. There is a three-minute interval at the end of the first and third periods and a 10-minute interval at half time.