EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Catch me if you can

Game-related skills are more likely to be discovered by playing games. Here is one such game which can be used as a warm up session as well as a full session. Players will learn successful ways to evade defenders and pass to free players.

The session also involves two exercises to revise the key areas.


Warm up time: 7-10
Session time: 20-25
Development time: 10-15
Game time: 10-15
Warm down time: 7-10


What to think about

  • Are the players using evasion running skills to get the balls into the scoring area?The players may try to run straight for the scoring area, and therefore become easy targets for the defence. Go back to simple side steps and swerving practices, before repeating the “catch me if you can” session.
  • Do the players use any type of team work to ensure success?Encourage clear concise communication and give the players time to work out a strategy before starting each attack. A small handling practice can be set up to remind players of the skills.

Set-up

  1. Collect a ball and move towards the scoring area by evading the defenders.
  2. Pass the ball to a team mate if you think you may be caught.
  3. Try to free any of your team mates that get caught and are in the “prison”.
  4. Look for space and free players, while keeping the defenders in view.

What you get your players to do

Split your squad into eight attackers and four defenders. On your signal the attackers have to move into the box, collect a ball and try to get as many of the balls into the scoring area. The ball can be passed. The defenders move into the area at the same time and try to touch tackle the attackers. If caught, the attacker places his ball on the ground and goes to the prison area. He can be released by another attacker tagging him with a ball.

The game continues until all the balls are in the scoring area or all the attackers are in the prison.

Eight attackers and four defenders play out the “catch me if you can” game.

Eight attackers and four defenders play out the “catch me if you can” game.


Development

  • Use a stop watch to see how long it takes the group to get all the balls into the scoring area.
  • Add more defenders to add more pressure on the attack.
  • Nominate four attackers and defenders to swap sides during the game.
  • Vary the position of the scoring area and prison.
Go back to a sidestep or swerving practice if you feel the players’ evasion skills need work.

Go back to a sidestep or swerving practice if you feel the players’ evasion skills need work.


Game situation

Play a game of six versus six and give the attacking team two balls. Strategically the attack should split themselves into two groups as should the defence, the decision making and spatial awareness will become apparent as the game develops.

Once a try is scored everyone focuses on the remaining ball. Start with touch rugby before developing into full contact.

A 3 v 1 passing game is good for finding space and awareness of support players and the defender.

A 3 v 1 passing game is good for finding space and awareness of support players and the defender.


What to call out

  • “React quickly and find a ball”
  • “Find the space, look for gaps”
  • “Side step, swerve and accelerate”
  • “Make a choice – pass or run”
  • “Pass and move”
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