The miss pass – 14 key coaching points

The best of times

1) To avoid passing to a slower player when trying to move the ball wide.

2) To release a move/players further away from the bulk of the opposition defence.

3) To pass to a player who is in space.

4) To stretch a defence, creating gaps to penetrate.

The worst of times

5) Where there is a three attacker on two defenders or two on one situation. A miss pass allows a defender to slide over quicker. This reduces the overload advantage.

Common mistakes in the execution of the pass

6) Receiver runs away from the pass so that the pass dips before it reaches them, or passer does not put the ball in front of the receiver.

7) Missed player does not look like they are going to receive the ball.

Think about getting more from your miss passes

8) Receiver running on an outside arc and so exploiting their speed against a slower runner.

9) Receiver receiving a flat pass very late from passer.

10) The length of the pass – does not always need to be a long pass, especially if the receiver is going to crash the ball up. Also does not need to be a spin pass if receiver arrives quite close to the missed player.

Top miss pass tips

11) Passer slows down to pass and turns hips towards receiver.

12) Missed player shouts “convincingly” as if they are going to get the ball. Scott Gibbs, the Wales and Lions centre used to shout, “Don’t waste me” as the ball went in front of him.

13) Missed player runs towards the pass, which helps reveal the receiver as well as interesting the defence.

14) The missed player claps their hands as the ball goes past them. Might just convince the defence that he has received it, but certainly keeps the missed players hands up in position as if he is going to receive it.

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