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General rules


Length of the Game 
Netball is played over four 15 minute quarters. 

There is a three minute break between the first and second quarter.
There is a five minute break at half time. 
There is a​three minute break between the third and fourth quarters. 
Injury time is up to two minutes. 

Starting the Game​
The game commences with the first centre pass taken at the umpire's whistle. 
● After each goal is scored, a new centre pass is taken alternatively by the two centre players, irrespective of who scores the goal. 
● The umpire's whistle indicates the beginning and end of each quarter. 

Scoring a Goal 
● A goal is scored when a Goal Shooter or Goal Attack within the goal circle throws the ball completely through the goal ring. 
● The umpire's whistle signals the goal is scored. 

There are five types of penalties in netball: a. free pass b. penalty pass c. penalty pass or shot d. throw in e. toss up

a. Free Pass
● A free pass is awarded for infringements on the court involving one player. 
●The pass is taken where the infringement occurred by any player who is allowed in the area.  
● The offending player does not have to stand beside the thrower taking the pass. 
● If a free pass is awarded in the goal circle, the shooter may only pass the ball - not shoot for goal. 

b. Penalty Pass/Penalty Pass or Shot
● A penalty pass is awarded for contact, intimidation and obstruction infringements. 

●The pass is taken where the infringer was standing, except if it places the non-defending team at a disadvantage. Any player who is allowed in the area can take the pass. 
●The penalised player must stand "out of play". That is, beside and away from the player taking the pass and make no attempt to take part in play. This includes directing play, until the ball has left the throwers hands. 
● If a penalty is given to a Goal Attack or Goal Shooter in the goal circle they are awarded a "penalty pass or shot".

c. Throw-In
● When the ball goes out of court it is thrown-in by an opponent of the team in the court that was last to touch it. 
●  The player taking the throw-in should place one or both feet behind the point where the ball crossed the line and make sure all other players are on the court before throwing the ball.

d. Toss Up
● A toss up is used to put the ball in play in situations such as, simultaneous contact by opposing players or if the umpire cannot decide who last touched the ball out of court. 
● The two players stand 0.9m (3 feet) apart, facing each other and their own goal end. Their arms should be straight with hands by their sides. Once in position, they must not move until the umpire has tossed it up from just below shoulder height of the shorter player, and blown the whistle. 
●The ball may be caught or batted except directly at an opponent. A goal shooter or goal attack may shoot for goal from a successful possession at a toss up. 
Blood Policy 
● An umpire is required to call time when no "on court" player has called time and the umpire observes that a player is bleeding or there is blood on the court, ball or any other player. 
● Play may be stopped and the rules regarding stoppages shall apply. 
● Before any player may retake the court: 
1. the flow of blood must be stopped 
2. any wound must be cleaned and adequately covered 
3. any blood stained clothing must be cleaned or removed 
4. if necessary, the ball and court must be cleaned before play restarts.  


Other rules


1. Team numbers and forfeits. 

● You must have 5 players who are registered in your team ready to take the court when the game commences. 

● If you are short of numbers you can 'borrow' players from other teams and clubs. Borrowed players can only come from lower or equal divisions and must not have already played a game in that division. 

● You may only borrow 2 players and these cannot be substituted or changed if another team member arrives late.   

● A player must be 13 years of age to play in the opens division


2. Team Changes and Substitutions 

● A team may make any number of substitutions at the quarter, half or three-quarter time break as well as during a stoppage due to injury or illness. 

● If a substitution or team change is made due to injury or illness, the injured or ill player must be involved in the substitution or positional change. The opposing team is free to make substitutions or positional changes, regardless if the team who called for the time out makes no changes.


3. Throw-ins.A throw-in takes place when a ball leaves the court. 

● The throw-in must be taken near to where the ball left the court.

● All players must be on court before the throw-in is taken. If all players are not on the court when the throw in is taken the ball will be passed to the opposition for a throw-in.

● The player taking the throw-in must be near to but not touching the court lines when throwing. If your foot touches the line then a penalty will be given to the opposition. They opposition will then take the throw-in from outside the court.

● Throw-in must be taken within 3 seconds.

4. Offside
● A player is offside when they enter an area (with or without the ball) in which they are not allowed in. 
●A player can reach for or lean on a ball in an offside area, but cannot touch the offside area with any part of their body. 
●The penalty for offside is a "Free Pass" to the other team where the offside took place or where the infringement occurred.

5. Held ball
● Players have 3 seconds to release the ball. The 3 seconds begins as soon as a player has touched the ball.
● A held ball is called when a player has the ball longer than 3 seconds (5 in netta/NetSetGO!). 
● If a held ball is called the opposition team is given a free pass.

6. Over a Third
● A player cannot throw the ball over a complete third without the ball being touched by a player in that third.
● If this occurs a free pass is awarded. This is taken from the third where the player gained possession (where ball was thrown from). 
●When the ball is thrown over a third from the base line, a free Pass is awarded to the opposing team in the goal third, where the ball crossed the second transverse line.

7. The Goal Post
● A player cannot use the goal post to swing off, push off, steady themselves, or to regain their balance.
●The penalty for this is a Free Pass to the opposing team.
●If the defending team has committed the offence while defending the shooters then a Penalty Pass or Shot would be awarded to the Shooters

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