Do the Aussies Rule?

Aussie Rules captain talks fitness, tactics and inventing the Yaya Toure song.

Ahead of their big match against the Gaelic boys, Aussie Rules team captain Ben Massey chats to The Tab about the season.

We don’t get it. What is Aussie Rules?

It’s a rugby-football cross – a bit like Gaelic Football, but the ball is rugby-shaped and it’s a contact sport. Also, the game never stops; substitutions happen on a rolling basis when the ball is thrown in the air. The pitch is huge oval shape with goals at either end. It’s quite technical, especially the banana kicks, but also exciting and physical.

When did you start playing? 

I started in my first year at Birmingham; I’m in my third year now. I used to play rugby, mainly at fly-half and full-back, so that helped a lot with the kicking.

How did the season go?

It went well. We lost a lot of players at the end of last season because it was them who set the society up. We had some really good wins this year, beating Leeds, Birmingham and Wolverhampton City Teams and also Cambridge. Beating Cambridge or Oxford is always big, because they have a lot of Aussie post grads on their teams.

The Convicts

Do you have a women’s team?

Not yet, but there has been a lot of interest, so we’re hoping to get that set up soon.

We asked the Gaelic Football team if they were all Irish. They weren’t. Are you all Aussies? 

For the first time, we don’t have a single Aussie in the squad. We want anyone to play, so I guess that’s a good thing.

But do you all still drink Fosters?

Of course.

Who’s the best drinker in the team?

The whole team is good. We always go too far. Which team doesn’t, though?

Captain Ben Massey competes for the ball

What is your favourite sport except for Aussie Rules?

I like rugby, but I really enjoy extreme sports of all kinds.

Do you have a good clip to show us?

Yes. Check out this extreme windsurfing video:

What’s been your team’s best night out? 

Definitely a post-match fab.

Any good stories from nights out?

I’m not sure how far I can go with this, but at a guy’s 21st, we went to a strip bar. The rest can’t be repeated.

Who’s the best with the ladies?

Probably me.

Best dancer?

David Ayre – his break dancing at pre-drinks will never be forgotten.

Who’s the team joker?

Sober, it’s Fabio (our resident DJ – that’s not his real name), though he wouldn’t admit it. Drunk, it’s Andy Mawson.

And apparently you guys started the Yaya Toure song at sports night?

Yeah, the Gaelic boys may have claimed it but I think it was us.

Follow the team on Twitter for more information.