Trugo: A Bizarre Sport You’ve Never Heard Of

Trugo is a strange sport, native to Melbourne, Australia, that combines bits and pieces of crochet, golf, hammer, and petanque. It is not one of the most popular sports in the world, but its fans are doing all in their power to make it more mainstream and move it outside of Melbourne.

You might think that Trugo is a brand-new sport since you’ve never heard of it. However, that’s far from the truth, since this sport was invented back in the 1920’s. Even though it’s almost 100 years old, there are still many Melbournians who still don’t know about it.

How Trugo Was Created

Trugo was first invented by Tom Grieves, a Yarraville railwayman and the first president of the Trugo Association.

Namely, certain rubber rings are used inside railway buffers that serve as shock absorbers. One day, Tom Grieves was looking for a way to pass time and decided to hit them around using his mallet. That’s how Trugo was invented.

Trugo remained at the railway stations for years, until railway retirees took it to a local park, where it became available to the public.

Until today, the rules have not changed too much. The length of the court is 30 meters long (the length of the famous Red Rattler trains), and the goal posts are adjusted to the width of the railway tracks.

The so-called catchers are holding a large cloth, or a butterfly net, ready to catch the rubber wheel, which can travel much farther than 30 meters.

Who Plays Trugo

In its early beginnings, Trugo was played only by men. The reason behind this is that most railways employees were men. However, women were accepted later as well and even created their own leagues.

However, women usually have a different way of playing. Men stand backwards to the target and slam on the rubber ring between their legs. Back in the days, women used to wear dresses and skirts, which made it difficult for them to play this way.

Instead, women started playing Trugo in a similar fashion to that of Golf by standing sideways, which earned them a nickname the Sidesweepers. However, today, there are no male and female distinctions and all teams are mixed.

Trugo Today

Today, there are seven active Trugo teams in Melbourne. Many play on courts that are very idyllic and traditional. The courts are carpeted with grass and have wooden pavilions. Pies and beer are also inseparable parts of Trugo, which makes the game even more fun.

There is a special book today that contains the names of people who have hit a maximum number of points, which is 24. That is a very rare occurrence, so such individuals usually quickly become celebrities in the world of this sport.

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