Canoe polo

Canoe Polo (called Kayak Polo in some countries) is a competitive ball sport played on water, in a defined "field", between two teams of five players, each in a kayak. The object of the game is to get the ball into the opponent's goal, the team scoring the most goals in a set time being the winner. The game is played in many countries on all continents, for recreation and serious sport. The sport has World Championships every 2 years. Internationally the sport is organized by the Canoe Polo committee of the International Canoe Federation, as one of the disciplines of the sport of canoeing. In 2005 Canoe Polo was contested at the World Games in Duisburg Germany under the patronage of the International Olympic Committee. Practising on the River Cam The game is often described as a combination of water polo, basketball and kayaking. The tactics and playing of the game are not unlike basketball or water polo but with the added complexity of the boats, which can be used to tackle an opposition player in position with the ball, or jostle for position within 6 metres of the goal. The ball, a waterpolo ball, is passed from between players using hands or paddles. A player in possession of the ball can be hand tackled by being pushed over on the shoulder or back and/or kayak tackled by an opposition member. Players may only have the ball in their possession for a maximum of five seconds. Players can "dribble" the ball by positioning the ball one meter or more ahead of themselves or sideways into the water. Most of the rules concern the safety of the players involved. For example illegal substitution and entry into the playing area (see below), illegal use of the paddle, illegal action against a capsized player, illegal jostle and illegal screening. Penalties include goal- and sideline throws, free shots, goal penalty shots, and pe

alty cards. Substitutions can be made at any time during the game without notifying the referee, the player and all their equipment must be behind the goal line before another player can come on. Illegal substitution results in the oncoming player being yellow carded or if it is unclear the captain will nominate a player (two minute send off, team plays with one less player). Canoe polo is played either indoors in swimming pools or outdoors on a pitch which should measure 35 metres by 23 metres. The boundaries of the pitch are ideally marked using floating ropes (similar to lane markers in swimming), although for smaller venues the edges of the pool are frequently used. [edit]Referees There are two referees (one on each side-line) and they are on foot rather than in boats. The score is kept by the scorekeeper and the timekeeper monitors the playing time and sending-off times. The goal lines are monitored by two line judges. Before play commences scrutineers check all kit for compliance with regulations. [edit]Goals The goals (measuring 1 metre high by 1.5 metres wide) are a frame with a net, suspended 2 metres above the water. A player, acting as goalie, defends the goal with their paddle by sticking it up vertically, special rules concern the goalie, such as: the attacking team not being able to interfere with or jostle them. The length of the paddles used by the goalies are often longer than those used by other players. [edit]Timing The game is officially played as a 1420 minute game consisting of two 710 minute halves. The teams change ends at the half-time period, which is 1 to 3 minutes long. Each half begins with a "sprint" where each team lines up against its goal-line and the ball is thrown into the middle of the pitch by the referee. One player from each team sprints to win possession of the ball.