The key to good tackling is how players get into position. They start working on this at a very young age in Australia. This is called tracking and is done before any contact is made. MORE
Let the defenders come up with a plan to stop the attack from the side of a ruck, and then let them implement it.
- The attack, starting behind the “dummy” ruck box, run into position
- The defence, starting on their fronts, run into position to defend
- The attack aim to get to the far end, starting with a pass from the 9 (who can also run themselves)
- 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
- The attackers have five attempts before they swap over
- The defenders have 10 seconds between each go to adjust their tactics
- The defence can experiment to decide what positioning or angles work best
Empower the players to come up with a defence which works best for them. Challenge them to change what they did before.
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.
- The feeder has to touch a certain number of cones in the small box before they pass the ball.
- Increase the level of contact.
- 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.