EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Player-plan defence

Let the defenders come up with a plan to stop the attack from the side of a ruck, and then let them implement it.

  1. The attack, starting behind the “dummy” ruck box, run into position
  2. The defence, starting on their fronts, run into position to defend

  1. The attack aim to get to the far end, starting with a pass from the 9 (who can also run themselves)
  2. The defence use “scrag” tackles. A scrag is a hold tackle at stomach level or below. Attackers can pass within two seconds of a scrag or the play is finished
  3. The attackers have five attempts before they swap over

  1. The defenders have 10 seconds between each go to adjust their tactics
  2. The defence can experiment to decide what positioning or angles work best

 

CHALLENGE

Empower the players to come up with a defence which works best for them. Challenge them to change what they did before.

SET UP

A 20m box, some cones.

HOW TO DO IT

  • Put a feeder (9) at the back of the small box, and three plus one attackers behind the box. They run out on your signal.
  • Put four defenders on their fronts at the side of the main box, on the other side of the attackers. They move into position when the attackers move into position.
  • Playing “scrag” tackling, the attackers aim to score over the far line. 
  • A scrag tackle is a firm hold tackle at the stomach level and below. If the attacker can pass within a few seconds of being scragged, then allow it.
  • There are no rucks or mauls, or kicking allowed.
  • Before each play, the defence have 10 seconds to talk about their improvements.
  • Give the attack five plays, and then swap roles.

DEVELOPMENTS

  • The feeder has to touch a certain number of cones in the small box before they pass the ball.
  • Increase the level of contact.

OUTCOMES

  • Score the defence on whether they stop the attack and where they stop the attack.
  • Once both groups have been through a round of attack and then defence, they should be able to feel what might work better.
  • Only coach them in terms of whether they achieved the outcomes. Let them decide the best ways to defend as a group.
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