Fend and offload

U13–U16 | HANDLING 8

Get players using the fend to stop being tackled and if not, offload the ball to a support player

  1. Mark out a 5m x 3m box 5m in front of an 8m try line. A ball carrier starts at one corner of the box and a defender in the middle of the other side. A support player starts in the middle of the end of the box.
  2. When you say “go”, the ball carrier aims to score at the far end, but must run inside the cone in front of him first. The defender aims to tackle him – he can cut across the box to make his challenge. The support player follows behind, anticipating the offload.

Fend and offload 1

  1. The ball carrier cannot pass until he is in contact with the tackler. Initially he must try to fend off the defender, but if he is unable to do this, he must offload the ball to the support player.
  2. Swap sides, so the ball carrier is working from the other side.

Fend and offload 2

Fending off a defender


You will need

  • A 5m x 3m box and an 8m try line
  • 1 ball
  • Cones
  • Bibs

Got more players?

Have players in line ready to take a turn.

What to tell your players

“Twist and turn your shoulders to keep the ball away from the defender”
“Pass the ball up with the palm of the hand under the ball”

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