There are two common forms of the game rugby, rugby league and rugby union. The exact date which rugby was created is subject to some debate, although the speculation among fans is that rugby was started around the year 1845 in Rugby School, Warwickshire, in the United Kingdom. Although historically there have been a number of games that have involved the carrying of a ball which could be tossed to other players ever since medieval times. Rugby was eventually split into two seperate sports in the year 1895 when 21 clubs decided to exit from the original Rugby Football Union, to go and form what would later be called rugby league. The split came about due to issues around payments to players, with rugby league players becomming the first to be able to be considered “professional” and able to earn their main income from playing rugby.
The two forms of rugby remain very similar sports, although they are different enough from each other to actually be considered to be two completely seperate sports. One of the biggest differences in gameplay between the two sports are the rules relating to possession of the ball. There are several rules that are still in place in rugby union that rugby league has disposed of, relating to opportunities for possession to be contested. The main differences being contesting the ball after a tackle, on the ground in rucks and through mauls. Possession in rugby union is contested through a line-out when the ball goes into touch, whereas in rugby league a scrum restarts the play.
Due to their being less focus on contesting possession in rugby league, there are fewer stoppages of play. This creates a big difference in the game overall, with some sport analysts implying that rugby league is the more physically demanding sport as the game is typically in play for 50 out of the 80 minutes in rugby league, compared with the ball only being in play for around 35 out of the 80 minutes on average in rugby union.
In both games tackling is permitted to either bring down a player who is in possession of the ball or prevent a player making forward progress. In either instance, tackling a player who is not in possession of the ball is not allowed.