Rugby players in general are as varied and rag-tag a group of individuals as you are likely to see on a field playing together. Whether you’re 5 foot nothing and weight less than your little sister or encroaching on the 7 foot mark weighing in at more than a small car, there is a position on the rugby field you will be able to aptly fill.
A rugby team is based around 15 players split into forwards and backs. A team consists of 8 forwards (the pack) and 7 backs, each group fulfilling very different roles on the field. In general the forwards will be notably larger than the backs and fulfil the role of smashing into one another at full kilter whilst pretending not to be hurt. The backs more often than not are the ‘pretty boys’ of the team usually opting to run around the opposition than through them as their smaller frames and good looks dictate.
There is however an increasing trend of backs bulking up to become almost as large as their forward counterparts. The Welsh are a particularly good example of this with George North (6ft 4 & 17st 2), Alex Cuthbert (6ft 6 & 17st), Jamie Roberts (6ft 4 & 17st 4) and Jonathan Davies (6ft 1 & 16st 5) all resembling forwards in stature but having the speed and guile to play in the backs.
That’s not to say there is no longer room for the smaller guys, Christian Wade who recently won the double at the RPA Awards is just 5ft 8 and weights in at 12st 11lb. The positions on a rugby field however vary as much as the players who fill them. Whilst some positions are all about pace and agility, others require physicality and a willingness to get in the way of anything or anyone that moves, no matter what the cost.