VIDEO: Drills to develop plays off the touchline: Option 1 fast ball

If you are going to play with width, then you are going to find yourself playing from a ruck which starts on the touchline. This can be easy to defend, so you need to develop tactics to outwit the opposition. Here’s an option from quick ball, using forwards.


  • Put a 9 in the 5m channel, on the 22m line (or any line) to help identify the gain line. Put a line of three ruck pads (or some cones) to indicate where the close ruck defence will be.
  • Put two forwards just beyond the 15m line (adjust for your players’ skill set). They will aiming to run at the far edges of the ruck defence, and perhaps even where a back might be.
  • The 9 runs across the defence, which will attract defenders towards him or her.
  • The 9 then passes flat (not backwards) to the oncoming forwards.


9: Keep hips facing the target, but looking at pads.

Forwards: Run when the 9 starts, but only accelerate when the pass is made.


The video shows the players understanding their starting points and timing.

Add in a defender with a pad to pressurise the 9. Add in two pad holders to act as “defensive targets” for the forwards. The forwards aim to take the pass and then step to the edges of the pads.

Finally, when you are playing a version of touch rugby to develop your on-field tactics, any pass away from a touchline from a touch-tackle has to be at least 10m, with the passer running a few steps. If it is completed successfully, then you could restart the tackle count.

For more techniques and tactics from Richard Hill, try out..

Share this
Follow us