Saturday, 13 Jul 2024

Nine-a-side Footy: A Modified Version of AFL

Nine-a-side Footy (AFL 9s) is an exciting and accessible team sport derived from Australian Rules Football. With the standard game of Aussie rules played with 18 players on each side, it has been challenging to introduce the sport to other countries. This led to the development of Nine-a-side Footy, a minified non-contact version of the sport aimed at spreading Aussie rules to new territories.

The sport is adaptable to various field shapes. Matches can take place on rectangular rugby fields, half or full Australian Rules Football fields, or even cricket fields. Like Aussie Rules, players can score points through goals and behinds, but points must be scored from inside the forward zone. Unlike the standard game, there is no tackling or bumping allowed. Additionally, players are only allowed to bounce the ball once before disposing of it. If the ball goes out of play, the nearest opponent kicks it back into play instead of a throw-in.

Each match is played with two teams, with nine players on each side. Within the team, three players are designated for the forward, back, and center positions. The objective of the sport remains the same – to score as many goals as possible. After a goal is scored, players must realign into their respective positions before the ball is reintroduced into play. However, once the game resumes, players have the freedom to roam.

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Currently, Nine-a-side Footy is played at the amateur level in Australia and Europe. One of the most popular European tournaments for the sport is the EU Cup, held annually.

Similar Sports

  • Rec Footy: An accessible non-contact version of Australian Football played with 8 players per team.
  • Metro Footy: A modified version of Australian football played on rectangular fields, primarily in the USA.
  • AFLX: A new version of Australian Football played on a rectangular field with seven players on each team. AFLX aims to showcase the most thrilling elements of the sport to attract new fans.
  • Australian Football: The fast-paced football code developed and played mainly in Australia. AFL matches are played between two teams of eighteen players on a large oval field. Scoring involves kicking the ball between goalposts to earn six points or passing the ball on either side of the goalposts to earn one point.
  • 9-Man Football: A small team version of American Football.
  • Rugby League Nines: A variant of rugby league football played with nine players on each team instead of the traditional 13.


Q: Can Nine-a-side Footy be played at a professional level?
A: Currently, Nine-a-side Footy is primarily played at an amateur level in Australia and Europe. There is no recognized professional league for this sport as of now.

Q: What is the purpose of Nine-a-side Footy?
A: The purpose of Nine-a-side Footy is to provide a non-contact version of Australian Rules Football that can be easily introduced and played in countries where the standard AFL game is less popular. It aims to spread the love for Aussie rules worldwide.

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Q: Are there any major tournaments for Nine-a-side Footy?
A: Yes, the EU Cup is the most popular European tournament for Nine-a-side Footy. It showcases the sport’s talent and attracts teams from different countries to compete against each other.


Nine-a-side Footy, or AFL 9s, is a modified version of Australian Rules Football designed to introduce the sport to new countries. With nine players on each team, the game allows for a more accessible and non-contact experience. Although played mainly at an amateur level in Australia and Europe, the sport has gained popularity through tournaments such as the EU Cup. Similar sports like Rec Footy and Metro Footy offer alternative ways to enjoy Australian Football. With its unique rules and adaptability to different field shapes, Nine-a-side Footy presents an exciting and fast-paced variation of AFL.

To learn more about Nine-a-side Footy and its growing community, visit the official website of Experience the thrill of this modified sport and join the global movement of Aussie rules enthusiasts.