EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Heads up backs play

Test out how well the players read the defence from a backs play, and still make headway even if they choose the wrong option.

  1. 9 passes to start the play
  2. 10 attacks the defence
  3. W (winger) tracks in behind
  4. 13 cuts in
  5. 12 drifts out
  6. The defender race forward, either from a ruck defence, scrum defence or lineout defence position

 

  1. 10 passes long
  2. The winger is an option on the inside of 12

  1. 10 passes short
  2. The winger is an option on the outside of 13

 

CHALLENGE

Attack the line, release a player into a gap, and still have options if there’s no line break or only half a line break

SET UP

A ball, and a pitch line to mark the gain line.

HOW TO DO IT

  • Set up four attackers with a feeder as in the top picture. Have three defenders in position for a ruck, scrum or lineout.
  • Have a feeder release the attack.
  • The attack aims to make a clean break through the defence, or if not, try to offload the ball through a half tackle.
  • The defence uses hold tackles.
  • Set up some measurement criteria for success. The players should decide these criteria. As a guide, suggest that only 1 in 5 backs moves lead to clean breaks, so it’s what happens the other four times that might need to be explored.

OUTCOMES

  • Push the players to play at the edge and make mistakes.
  • Understand that some players are better passers than others, so the angles of running need to reflect that.
  • Sometimes, say that this play is the one that must work – putting additional pressure on the execution.
  • Encourage the players not to pre-plan who’s getting the ball.
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