VIDEO: 2 v 2 attacking the gap to break the defensive line

Develop footwork from the ball carrier to attack a gap between two defenders and then pass out of the tackle to a supporting player.  This is a powerful tactic to create line breaks against a defensive line. The drill works on evasive skills, offloading and support play. Former Worcester Warrior coach Richard Hill explains the detail.


  1. Put a feeder and two attackers about 5-10m away from two defenders.
  2. Have the feeder pass the ball to the first attacker. That attacker runs first at the inside defender, and then swerves late to attack the space between the defenders.
  3. Once through the space between the defenders, the attacker passes the ball to the supporting attacker.
  4. To start with, the defenders can only go low on the attacker.
  5. The defenders can wear tackle suits if available. The first defender could have a ruck pad.
  6. Because of the dynamic nature of the exercise, keep changing the distances between the attack and defence, and the length of the feeder’s pass.


  • The defenders aim to grab the ball.
  • The second defender doesn’t drift out, but the attackers “win” if the ball carrier gets more than 3m beyond the first defender.


  • Attack the first defender at pace before changing late.
  • Beat the defenders before trying to pass the ball.
  • Turn the shoulders AFTER the tackle to pass.
  • Use fends and one hand passes if necessary.
  • Decide whether the miracle pass works (that is, risk v reward).

Here are some more ways to develop this drill.

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