Rugby Scrum - wiki

In the rugged and strategic world of rugby, the scrum stands as a testament to the sport's physicality and teamwork. A scrum is not just a means to restart play, but a battle of strength, technique, and coordination, showcasing the sport's unique blend of power and skill. This guide dives into the essence of the rugby scrum, its formation, the roles of the players involved, and the rules governing its execution.

What is a Scrum?

A scrum in rugby is a method of restarting the game following minor infringements or stoppages, such as a forward pass or a knock-on. It involves players from both teams locking together in a specific formation and pushing against each other to gain control of the ball.

Formation and Participants

The scrum formation consists of eight players from each team, known as the forwards. These players bind together in three rows: the front row, the second row, and the back row. The formation is as follows:

  • Front Row: two props (loosehead and tighthead) on either side of the hooker.
  • Second Row: Two locks bind together and push against the front row's backs.
  • Back Row: Consists of two flankers on either side and the number eight at the back.

The scrum-half from the team awarded the scrum feeds the ball into the tunnel formed by the two sets of front-row players.

Objectives and Execution

The primary objective of a scrum is to secure possession of the ball. The hooker plays a crucial role by using their feet to 'hook' the ball back towards their team. The rest of the players push forward in a cohesive unit, trying to overpower the opposition and gain advantageous ground.

Key Rules

  • The Feed: The ball must be fed into the centre of the tunnel in a straight line.
  • Engagement: Teams must not engage before the referee's call. The sequence of calls usually follows "crouch, bind, set".
  • Pushing: Teams can push no more than 1.5 meters against the opposition in a contest for the ball to ensure safety.
  • Penalties: Penalties can be awarded for various infringements, including early engagement, collapsing the scrum, or feeding the ball unfairly.

The Scrum's Significance

The scrum is more than a contest for the ball; it's a psychological and physical test, a showcase of discipline, and a critical moment that can shift the momentum of the game. It requires immense strength, technique, and teamwork, making it a pivotal part of rugby's allure and complexity.


Understanding the rugby scrum offers insight into the sport's depth and the unique blend of strategy, strength, and teamwork that defines it. The scrum is a microcosm of rugby itself, embodying the commitment, discipline, and camaraderie that make the sport truly remarkable.

Rugby Cups

List of all rugby cups.

Rugby Leagues

List of all rugby leagues.