Kiltimagh GAA Club
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Tag Football

The following are details of the Rules of the Tag Football Competition. These rules are available to download from the 'Downloads' tab. The Information Note setting out the terms and conditions for participation in Kiltimagh GAA Club's Tag Football Competition and the Disclaimer Form are also available there for download. Anyone wishing to participate in the competition is required to sign both the terms and conditions and the Disclaimer.






The game is played between two teams of 7 players on a grass pitch, laid out across the width of a GAA pitch. Each squad has a maximum of 10 players and there is unlimited use of substitutions throughout the game. Each panel must have a minimum of 4 ladies and each team must have a minimum of 2 ladies on the field at any time. Each squad must have a minimum of 1 player over 40, whether male or female. Each squad can only have a maximum of 3 players who lined out for a men’s senior, intermediate or junior club team in 2011 or 2012.



Each player shall wear two tags attached with velcro to a waistband, which is to be worn outside the jersey. These tags shall be located on the left and right sides of the body


Each team must wear a matching set of jerseys/bibs. These will be prvided to each team before each game. Jerseys/bibs must be tucked into a player’s shorts at all times to allow tagging.



The most important Rule is to have fun and enjoy yourself! Remember that both the opposition players and the referee are also there to enjoy the game. Kiltimagh GAA Tag football implements a strict Zero Tolerance attitude on abuse towards referees, opposition players, team-mates etc. Yellow/Red Cards will be issued immediately if there is any abuse during a game.





You must have a minimum of 2 ladies on the field of play at all times, including injuries and sin-binning. Only ladies and over 40s can score goals. Ladies and over 40s can kick scores whereas men can only score with the fist.


Each team starts with 7 players, of which 2 must be ladies. Teams should line out with 2 defenders, 2 midfielders and 2 forwards. The remaining player can be goalkeeper if required. Which are ladies and which are men is up to each team.



The game is a strict no-contact game, meaning that the referee will stop play and award a free against the team who initiated contact. Minor or accidental contact will result in a turnover if by the attacking team and a free if by the defending team. Clumsy and deliberate/reckless contact will be penalised. Tackling is strictly forbidden. The referee may also award possession to the defending team, if two players are running towards the ball and the referee predicts that contact may occur. If it is a 50/50 attempt to grab the ball the attacking team can be awarded a free. Shoulder charges or tackling from the side is also forbidden. You cannot attempt to slap the ball out of someone’s hand at any stage.




1.         Each game shall be of 30 minutes duration, divided into 2 halves of 15 minutes duration.


2.         The game commences with a kick-out, from the hands, from within the small square.


3.         When a player is in possession of the ball a player may not travel more than 4 steps without either toe-tapping or bouncing the ball. When in possession, a player may take 4 steps then toe-tap or bounce the ball then take another 4 steps and toe-tap/bounce (but only if the first play was not a bounce) and can take a further 4 steps after that play but must then play the ball away with the fist or foot. A player is not permitted to throw the ball.  When a player over-carries the ball it is turned over.


4.         Physical contact is not permitted.


5.         Each player shall wear two tags attached with velcro to a waistband, which is to be worn outside the jersey. These tags shall be located on the left and right sides of the body. Once one of a player’s tags is removed by an opponent he/she must hand over possession of the football to that opponent. The opponent recommences play with a free kick from the hand(s). Failure to hand the ball over i.e. directly into the hands of the opponent, will result in the ball being advanced 10 metres, or where the free kick is within 20 metres of the goals, being brought 10 metres toward the centre of the goal line.


When the ball is turned over from an interception the team can play on until they are tagged. When a ball is turned over from a free the ball must be passed from where the free occurred. If the ball goes out over the sideline the ball is also turned over. You cannot dive on the ball when it is loose on the ground. You are allowed to pick the ball up if you are not near any opposing players and a pass is dropped. You can pick the ball straight off the ground. You are not allowed to kick a ball while it is on the ground, unless you have been in control of the ball, are a lady and are passing it to a team-mate; in this scenario you can be legally tagged. After an opposition player scores or puts the ball wide the defending team will now become the attacking team, they must re-start with a pass from on the goal line.


6.         The ball may be lifted directly off the ground provided the player concerned is in an upright position. A player who is not in an upright position, may play the ball away on the ground with the hand but may not scoop it up to a teammate.


7.         Only one opponent may “tag” a player who is in possession. The aim is to remove the player’s tag without physical contact.


8.         The ball is turned over when it goes over the sideline and whichever team last touched the ball before it goes over the sideline lose possession. Sideline kicks are taken from the hand at the point where the ball crosses the sideline by the player nearest to that point. When a defending team puts the ball over their own end line that results in a ‘45’ being awarded to the attacking team. The kick is taken from the ground on the halfway line.


9.         Breaches of the Playing Rules result in a free kick to the opposition.


10.      Free kicks are taken from the hand by the player who is fouled. The player nearest to where a technical foul is committed takes the resulting free kick.


11.       If play is interrupted due to injury etc. the player who last had possession of the ball shall recommence play by kicking the ball from the hand. Where there is a dispute regarding the identity of the player who last had possession of the ball the Goalkeeper nearest the ball at the time play was interrupted shall recommence play by kicking the ball from the hand on the goal line.


12.       Players cannot use their hands, the ball or their t-shirt to block their tags. If a player blocks his/her tag, the referee will award a free to the opposition.


13.       Penalty Kick – A penalty kick results from a personal foul within the large rectangle or a Red Card infringement, wherever on the pitch it may occur. Penalties are taken from the ground 11 metres from the centre of the goal line. Only one member of the opposition (the goalkeeper) is permitted to stand on the goal line. The goalkeeper is not allowed to move until the ball is kicked. The penalty must be taken by a lady or over 40.


14.       Small Square:- No attacking player can enter the small square at any time. Entry into the square by an attacking player shall result in a free to the defending team. Only one defending player, at any one time, may enter the small square. If a second defending player enters the small square then that will result in a 13 metre free to the attacking team.




Only ladies and over 40s can score goals. Scores count the same as in Gaelic Football. As in Gaelic Football a point is scored when the ball is placed between the posts and over the crossbar while a goal is scored by placing the ball between the posts but under the crossbar. A goal is worth 3 points. A score cannot come directly from a tag. The player in possession must pass the ball rather than attempt a score. However, a player is entitled to score from a free or 45. Ladies and over 40s can score from a kick or fist, men can score only with the fist. You may only score from inside your opponents’ half.




1.         The defending team tries to stop the attackers from scoring. They do this by pulling a tag from the player in possession of the ball. Removing the tag is effectively the tackle and requires great hand-to-eye coordination.


2.         The defending team can turnover the ball by intercepting a pass or alternatively by tagging the opposition player in possession of the ball.


3.         When a defender tags an attacker, he/she should hold the tag in the air (so the referee can see it). He/she should then exchange the tag for the ball. Play then resumes on the referees whistle.


4.         When possession turns over, the defending team must retreat 2 metres. Failure to move back 2 metres on any of these occasions will result in the referee awarding a free against the defending team.


5.         You can dive to pull a tag off an attacking player as long as you do not make contact with them. You can block any kick or handpass with your hands again so long as you do not make contact. Contact will result in a free against you.





1.         Play is resumed by a kickout from within the small square after a score or after the ball goes wide. Kickouts are from the hand.


2.         If they wish to score goals then the attacking team must engineer their ladies or over 40s scoring in the goal they are attacking. Any player may score a point but men can only score points with the fist.


3.         Ball Away – If an attacking player is ‘tagged’ simultaneously while passing the ball, the referee calls ‘ball away’ and play goes on and the attacking player does not lose a tag.




A yellow card shall be shown for persistent foul play or disruptive, unsporting conduct. Cumulative foul play by a team may result in the referee warning the team that the next foul will attract a yellow card. Verbal abuse of a referee, opposing player or team-mate shall automatically result in a yellow card for an individual player.

Penalty: A player who receives a yellow card shall spend 5 minutes in the ‘sin bin’ and no replacement shall be allowed in that time. However, a team must have a minimum of 2 ladies on the pitch at any time.


A red card shall be shown for serious foul play or irresponsible conduct by an individual. It will also be shown for serious verbal abuse of a referee, opposition player or team-mate. Contact deemed to be dangerous or contact resulting in an injury to an opposing player shall be considered to be serious foul play.

Penalty: A player who receives a red card shall be suspended from playing the rest of that game and no replacement shall be allowed in that time. However, a team must have a minimum of 2 ladies on the pitch at any time. Furthermore, that player will also be suspended for the next game in the competition.


If a player is shown a second yellow card in the same game then that will mean a red card must follow. However, that player will not be suspended for the next game in the competition.



There are no restrictions on the amount of substitutions during a game but two ladies must remain on the field at all times. Substitutions are made only within the designated area. The player leaving the field must hand over his/her 2 tags to the player replacing him/her. The replacing player cannot enter onto the field of play until the 2 tags are properly attached.

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