An extra split second of pressure on the opposition can be the difference between success and failure. Rugby defence is not just about defensive systems. The best defensive teams enjoy defending. They are positive in defence and loud and accurate with their communication. So, does your rugby team see defence as a chore or as a great chance to win back the ball? Use the defence drills below to get your team working together to form a more cohesive defensive unit.

How to counter ruck effectively 3

Kings of the counter ruck

in Defence, Practice plans, Rucking & Mauling

Counter rucking spoils the attacking team’s quick ball. Either your players win back the ball or, at worst, disrupt the opposition scrum half’s attempt to clear it. Once techniques have been embedded, this session progresses to the decision-making process for counter rucking. MORE

Block and tackle

in Defence

Individual defenders have to react quickly to changes in potential ball carriers. This session develops a defender’s ability to slide on to the ball carrier, sometimes at the last moment. MORE

Defensive systems from set piece

in Ask Dan, Defence

My U15 team has leaked lots of tries from scrums and lineouts recently. What are the best ways to defend from these set pieces? The problem lies in the connection between the forwards and the backs. The backs are 5-10m back from the forwards, so when the ball is released, they don’t immediately connect. MORE

How to drift the defence at scrums 2

Drift defence at scrums

in Defence, Practice plans, Tackling

With a 5m ruling at scrums, teams tend to use drift defence. However, they need to practise not only the mechanics of the drift but also ways to cover the gap inside the 10, who has to catch up with his openside flanker. MORE

Scrambling: rear tackling

in Defence, Rugby drills

Most tackles from behind are from an angle. Use this session to develop the skills to make realistic tackles as players “scramble” back and chase a ball carrier. A rear tackle is a recovery tackle by a player who’s chasing. MORE

Follow us