Main ways to maintain continuity
There are three main ways that you maintain continuity after a tackle.
The player ball carrier passes in the tackle or straight after the tackle.
What are the risks and rewards?
The risks are that the ball carrier is falling, so they are unbalanced. Also, defenders might be able to intercept the pass.
The reward is that the ball can be moved quicker, either forward or passed away.
Sometimes the ball can be played without a ruck being formed.
If the ball carrier cannot pass the ball away, then a ruck might form.
There are two ways:
- When the ball is on the ground and at least one player from each team is in contact over the ball.
- Tackled player is protected an attacker.
As a minimum, a ball carrier and teammate on their feet and held by one defender.
An attacker on their own held up by one or more defenders is not a maul.
Attacking mauls rarely occur unless from a lineout. This is because they are hard to set up as an attacking platform unless the ball carrier starts standing still. In open play, a maul tends to favour the defence, because an incomplete maul means possession at the next scrum goes to the defending team. Therefore, there’s an extra incentive to make sure the maul is incomplete.