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Day 23 of August pre season training tips: defence by David Clarke

August 23


Pre season is good time to set out your defence principles. Start with the basics at the key areas and then develop them as the season progresses.

Defence is how your players align themselves from a static situation like a set piece or breakdown. It is also how they move once the ball is released.

Here is the running order of importance:
1. Ruck defence. There are more rucks than any other static situation. You need to decide how to cover the fringes of the ruck and then how line up from there. More time should be spent on this organisation than all the other defence areas put together.
2. Scrum defence. Probably there will be more scrums than lineouts, so this is the next most important area. Things to consider: where does the scrum half go, what are the roles of the back row, where does the 10 stand in relation to the scrum, where should the wingers go.
3. Lineout defence. Here you want to think about the connection between the back of the lineout and the 10.
4. Kick return defence. When your team kick the ball, apart from the chasers, how will you cover the backfield.
5. Maul defence. If there is a maul close to your line, then how will you defend?
6. Red zone defence. If they have the ball in your 22m area, will your ruck and set piece defence change? For instance, will you bring your wingers up?

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