Evasion skills are essential but there aren’t always big spaces to move into. This game works on getting players to avoid contact in enclosed areas while maintaining possession.
Play on a 25x20m area with two tackle tube gates (or ruck pads) separated by a single tube on one side (picture 1). Five attackers (A) opposite five defenders (D).
The first attacker and first defender enter their gates. On reaching the tube barrier, the attacker has one second to decide which way to run and beat the defender (picture 2).
Defence is two-handed touch tackling. Keep going until all have attacked and defended and keep a count on the tries scored per team. Then swap attack and defence and play again to find the winning team.
To progress, send in two attackers but only one goes through the gate. This gives the ball carrier 2v1 options.
A try is scored if a player beats a two-handed touch. When it’s a 2v1, the player in possession has to avoid being touched.
“Low centre of gravity, stay on your toes not heels and don’t overstep – this slows you down.”
“Look at the defender and change direction accordingly.”
Presents a match-like scenario and challenges players to evade contact while keeping the ball.
Ged Hall challenges players to be effective in finding space and passing, either on their feet or from the ground (the deck!). Good for fitness as well as decision-making.
Deck hands is seemingly a very simple game to play, but beneath its simple exterior is a game that challenges players physically, mentally, tactically and technically. MORE
Twenty years of writing about coaching makes you reflective. I did use games 20 years ago. I invented some at the time, and still use variations of them. You would think by now I would have seen them all. MORE
Use this quick-to-set-up game, including an easy-to-adapt playground element, with rewards and forfeits thrown in.
This is a game I will use at the start of sessions as a pulse raiser, sprint activation and to develop realistic evasion skills. It takes less than a minute to set up and can be played with three or more players. MORE
Use this game and its variation to create opportunities for players to make decisions on when to attack open or go back to the blindside. Create opportunities to stretch the defence and then attack where they are weakest. MORE