EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Guarding the breakdown

This defensive drill is designed to teach your players to automatically build an impenetrable wall around the breakdown. It will also increase your chances of forcing a turnover at the next phase.

  1. Four defenders lie face down, in a press-up position, at the four cones on the side of the pitch.

  1. On your command, the players do a press-up and race to whichever of the three coloured cones you nominate.
  2. On the way, they need to practise communication and decision-making.
  3. In the two wide channels, one player should defend the short side (or blind side), with three on the open.
  4. In centre-field, go for an even split, with two players guarding either side.
  5. Ensure players are in the right defensive positions and with the right body positions – and still communicating with each other.

  1. As soon as you’re happy, call another colour and they repeat the exercise at the next breakdown.
  2. Run through a few phases before repeating the drill in a round-robin fashion with the next group of defenders.

TECHNIQUE

  • Guards should stand with outside leg facing forward.
  • Check spacing – an arm’s distance apart is enough.
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