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LACROSSE

ORIGINS

  • Originally lacrosse was known as baggataway and played by North American Indians as a training for camaigns of war. This meant that as many as 1000 players a lined up on each side. The game could also last several days. The first national body was formed in Canada in 1867.

  • The game was introduced to England in the same year by a team of touring Caughnawaga Indians. The womenís game developed from the menís game, and there are considerable differences in the rules. The menís version was played at the 1904 and 1908 Olympics with a Canadian club Shamrock, winning the first time and the Canadian national side four years later.

  • It was then dropped as an Olympic sport, although it has since appeared three times as a non-medal-winning demonstration sport.


SPACE REQUIRED

  • In menís lacrosse the pitch is 65x110 metres, while in womenís it is 65x110 metres. The netted goals are 1.83 metres high and wide.


PLAYING APPARATUS

  • Each player has a Crosse, which is a stick with a firm net at the end in which to catch and dispatch the ball. Those used in womenís game are lighter than those used by men. Players wear shorts, although women may wear short skirts and jerseys in team colours with numbers on the front and back.

  • Protective helmets with face guards are obligatory, as are gloves. Other protective padding is optional. The goalkeeper may wear chest and tight protectors. In the womenís game players other than the goalkeeper may not wear protecting clothing, which the exception of tight fitting gloves.


RULES AND REGULATIONS

  • The players use their netted sticks to carry, throw and bat the ball about the field as they run. The team scoring the most goals wins.

  • The menís game is played by two teams of ten players. The match is divided into four 25 minute quarters, with the teams changing ends after each quarter. There is a three-minute break after the first quarter, 10 minutes for half-time and five minutes after third quarter.

  • The womenís team consists of 12 players and the match is divided into two 25-minute halves, with a 10-minute interval at half-time.


RECORDS SET IN THS GAME

  • Twin brothers Gary and Paul Gait were born in 1967 in Victoria, British Columbia, and won scholarships to Syracuse University where they became the greatest brother combination in lacrosse. Gary, the superior player of the two, led Syracuse to two National Collegiate Athletics Association Championship, as well as becoming the leading scorer in Syracuse lacrosse history. Both brothers played in mid-field. Before they took up lacrosse they were also expert players of basketball and rugby union.


DID YOU KNOW?

  • One of the most memorable lacrosse matches was played in the shadow of the Egyptian pyramids in 1914 by servicemen from the 6th Manchester regiments, in a Lancashire versus Cheshire contest. There never was a return match Ė many of those playing were destined to die in Turkey during the disastrous Gallipoli campaign of the First World War.


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