EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Late Support

A decision-making game that highlights support play and change of speed. It’s also a great exercise for improving spatial awareness and gives players’ core skills a workout, too.

What you need for this game

  • 5 Players
  • 1 Ball
  • 7 Cones

Set-up

Use cones to mark out a playing area measuring 20m x 10m. Use more cones to mark a halfway line at 10m and place another cone in the centre of the halfway line. One end will be a try line, as shown 1.

Rules

Play two-handed touch rugby. Each game ends when either a try is scored, the defenders take possession of the ball or the player in possession is tackled by a defender.

What you do as coach

1. Position two attackers at one end of the playing area and two defenders at the other end, on the try line. Place a third attacker just off the playing area at the halfway mark.

2. On your whistle, the first two attackers run down the playing area to attempt to score at the try line. When they pass the halfway line, the two defenders move forwards to try to stop them.

3. Once the first two attackers have both crossed the halfway line, the third attacker runs round the central cone and offers support to his team mates.

The player in possession at the end of the game becomes the support attacker and the other two attackers become defenders, while the two defenders jog up to become attackers.

How you can progress the game

Mix things up by getting the support attacker to join play from the opposite side of the pitch or by placing the extra cone in different positions.

Give the attackers something extra to think about by rolling the ball in to them.

Late Support-1

  • Two attackers at one end, plus one to the side.
  • Two defenders on the try line.
  • Set up: Explain to your attacking players that you will be looking for them to create space and then utilise that space efficiently.

Late Support-2

  • Attackers advance.
  • When the attackers pass halfway, the defenders move.
  • Observe: The attackers should be using their pace and angles of running to commit defenders. Do they do this?

Late Support-3

  • After the attackers pass halfway, the third attacker runs round cone and joins play.
  • Note: The support player adds a new dynamic to the attack. Do the attackers communicate effectively when he comes on?
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