Tacklers need to feel confident that the right technique works. This is more difficult when they are practising with static targets. Part of the reason why a ball carrier goes to ground is that they are unbalanced, and so it's much easier to bring a moving player down to the ground. MORE
First in clears the threat
The first support player at the ruck needs to decide whether to clear out a threat and, if so, which technique to use. Start by developing three key techniques, then put them into a game situation.
Work on skills at a low pressure, then relate them to the game as soon as you can.
Work on the ruck clearing skills shown above:
- Driving out of a threat
- Clearing a low player
- Rolling away a defender lying on or near the ball
- Next, play touch. Overload the attack (say, 8 v 6).
- If touched, the carrier must pass within 1 second or go to ground.
- The first support player passes the ball away.
- Swap players around after a couple of minutes.
- Finally, put half the defenders in bibs – they can challenge for the ball on the ground.
- The attackers have to clear these threats.
- Condition one of the bibbed players to sometimes lie on top of the “tackled” player.
- Again, play for a couple of minutes before swapping players around.
- Normal clear-out (1): drive into the ruck-pad holder at waist height, hips square, with legs pumping
- Low clear-out (2): use the arms and legs as levers to push and pull the threat away from the ball
- Lying defender clear-out (3): get under their body and roll