Key tips to a successful defence

- Prepare yourself

Here is a check list covering the most important aspects of a well-planned defence.

  • Quickly get organised, which includes keeping an eye on the competition.
  • Pressure, the defence should try to limit the time and room the opponent has to manoeuvre by moving forward.
  • The key to successfully organising a defence is open lines of communication. They must be:
    Precise: phrases like "stay wide", "I've got the centre", "you've got him," and "up fast," are all dead on. All messages are concise and easy to understand.
    Strong: each player must make it known to his opponent that he is aiming at him. The group must send a message to the opponent that it is well-prepared and eager to engage.
    Encouraging: players should encourage one another after a missed tackle and applaud when successful one’s are made.
rugby defence
  • Solid technique; players should relish and take satisfaction from tackling.
  • Want to put the man on the ground with every tackle, and then get up quickly to challenge for the ball and win turnovers when they succeed.
  • Be adaptable; the team must be ready to counter any attack.

- Intelligent leaders for superior defence

A proper defensive mindset is required from the players. You need to instil in them a love for the sport of tackling and a sense of pride in both their own and the team's accomplishments.

You should also encourage your players and show enthusiasm for defence during games and practises. Recognize the defensive efforts of your best players as an opportunity to inspire the rest of the team and foster healthy competition. Inspire your team to boast about who made the most tackles or who won the most turnovers in the last game.