Games are officiated by umpires. The winner of a coin toss determines which directions the teams will play to begin.Australian football begins after the first siren, when the umpire bounces the ball on the ground or throws it into the air if the condition of the ground is poor, and the 2 ruckmen battle for the ball in the air on its way back down.This is known as the ball-up.Ball-up is also done in a certain disputes during the play from the point of contention.
If ever the ball goes out beyond the oval boundary line, a boundary umpire will stand with his back to the infield and return the ball into play with a throw-in, a high backwards toss back into the field of play.
The ball can be move in any direction by way of a foot, clenched fist or open hand tap but it cannot be thrown under any circumstances. The player must dispose the ball once he takes possession of it, by either kicking or hand-balling it. Any other method of disposing the ball is illegal and it will result a free kick to the opposing team. If the ball is not in the possession of one player, it can be move with any part of the body.
A player may run with the ball but it must touched on the ground at least once every 15 meters. Opposition players may bump or tackle the player to obtain the ball and when tackled the player must dispose the ball cleanly or risk being penalized for holding the ball. The ball carrier may only be tackled between the shoulders and knees.
If a player takes possession of the ball that has traveled more than 15 meters from another player’s kick, by way of a catch, it is claimed as a mark, which the game will be stop and he will prepare to kick from the point at which he marked.
Alternatively, he may choose to play on, forfeiting the set shot in the hope of pressing an advantage for his team (rather than allowing the opposition to reposition while he prepares for the free kick). Once a player has chosen to play on, normal play resumes and the player who took the mark is again able to be tackled.