My response to Jared about the ban of third man up

The ban of the third man up can be a good Christmas present for ruckmen in the competition, but the majority of footy fans are against the change of the game law.

I have read Jared’s article with his views as a ruckman as well as comments made on his post.

His points of views about change in how games are played are reasonable. Even I have been following footy for only several years, I think numbers of bounces and goals were more on the field in the past than modern footy.

In the past, I reckon the third man didn’t affect how footy was played. It seemed easy to catch balls in the midfield without the third man and just players bounced and scored goals.

But recent years, “traffic” on the footy field has been congested like the Main Street in Kyoto – ask someone who has been here about Shijo Street and then you will know what it is like.

Then tall blokes are needed to clear the “traffic”. They catch the ball and kick towards or bounce the ball to score goals.

To write this article, once again I rely on Youtube. Patrick Dangerfield and Marcus Bontempelli come up for my good sources for my writing.

I had a look at the young Bulldog’s performances at the Grand Final.

At the first bounce, the ball was hit out by their ruckman, Roughead and the flying ball was hit out by another Bulldog (the number was unclear to see). Then Bontempelli hit out for the third time as the third man to help moving towards the goal square.

He is the third man not only at the centre but also his territory of the midfield and even half back. His works are to catch the ball and to handball or kick the ball towards the goal square.

What if Bontempelli is not allowed to chase the opponent ruckman? The opponent will touch the ball or the ball is going nowhere.

As clubs try to dominate the game, the third man is to contest the ball at the centre. To score more goals, contested hit out is needed, I think.

Players should be protected, but if the third man is banned, the sport will be less attractive. I reckon many fans want to see attacking footy. Defensive footy is the subject to feel bored.

If the clubs are worried of ruckmen’s injuries, they need to have tall guys who can fill in the ruck. For example, St Kilda deploy Josh Bruce in the ruck when Tom Hickey is tired or on the bench.

The third man is needed to create attacking footy in the modern footy where players help each other in positions.

I am against the rule change.


Thanks for reading my articles and for your support in 2016.

I wish you all Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

About Yoshihiro Imagawa

Love, passion and pride are seen on the footy that is the biggest part of my life. 1. St Kilda Club member: I am a passionate and crazy Sainter. Just hope we will win the second flag soon, especially after Dogs and Tigers having ended long premiership draughts. 2. The Osaka Dingoes Player and Public Relations Officer: Player number 44 that I chose to honour Stephen Milne with my wish being like a small forward like him. Lenny Hayes' hardworking attitudes are adopted on my trainings and practices. Nick Riewoldt's great plays are in my player audiobook too. 3. Writing: Here on the Almanac and also on the World Footy News. My skills utilise on great footy websites.


  1. Jared Newton says

    Interesting. Must say I’ll have to disagree. Umpires pay free kicks to kill congestion all the time. I don’t think it’ll change the congestion issue and it’ll force clubs to use proper ruckmen in my opinion as I outlined. In saying all this I do come from a biased position as a bloke who played 250 odd games of country footy in the ruck, so I’m going to be a flag bearer for the big men!!!

  2. G’day Jerad,

    Thanks for your honest comment.

    I missed your point of view about free kick killing the congestion. It seems congestion is not easy to be eased because many players gather around the ball once the ball is kicked after the awarded free kick.

    If clubs need proper ruckmen, I suggest the rules comity to increase number of interchanges.

    Like the modern footy, the issue seems so complicated.

    Cheers and Merry Christmas


  3. I played footy mainly as a ruckman and I am appalled at the stupidity re banning the 3rd man up footy is a game for all sizes from Caleb Daniel thru to Sandilands yet they want to give the biggest player a advantage incredible and if this stupidity was going to occur it had to happen before the draft and trade

  4. Rulebook,

    Merry Christmas (my apology for the belated) and Happy New Year!

    Thanks for the comment and sorry for the reply to your comment.

    It’s interesting to hear your opinion as a former rackman. Did you enjoy contested hit outs and marks? I guess so.

    I much prefer powerful footy so third man up should remain.

    Also I agree with you that the rule change should occur before the trade period so that clubs could fix the game plans.

    I hope your 2017 goes well.


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