Set up a realistic training scenario so your players can practise backs moves like “slice”, where timing, angles and decisions all depend on how the defence sets up and then reacts. MORE
Ruck races in defence – two activities
Use these activities to develop your players’ detail at the breakdown to win crucial turnover ball.
To contest the ball at the ruck, speed to the ball is a vital factor to allow the player the chance to get his hands on the ball. If he’s there before the ruck forms and is still gripping the ball as the opposition arrive, he can often win the ball or a penalty.
1 WIN THE RACE
- Two players circle a 3m square, with a ruck pad and ball in the middle, with each player knowing which direction they are playing.
- When you shout play, they must win the space over the ball, entering from the correct angle.
- The attacking player, who has the ball on his side of the pad simply aims to protect the ball, while the defender aims to get his hands onto the ball.
2 THREE MAN STEAL
- A ball carrier jogs into the box, with a ruck-pad holder behind him.
- A defender comes in from the side of the box to complete a tackle, with two support players.
- A tackle is made, with one support player going for the ball and the other clearing away the ruck-pad holder.
- The ruck-pad holder aims to go over the ball and prevent the ball being stolen.
- The first supporting defender goes for the ball.
- The second supporting defender drives away the ruck-pad holder.
- Arrive square, low and legal.
- Have a wide base with the legs to keep low.
- Aim to get the head over the ball.
- Defender: aim to lift the ball, not just grab it.