There are a variety of ways that teams can exit their own half successfully in rugby.
Generally, I suggest having a framework (not set rules) works best and allows players to make the best decisions ‘in the moment’.
The clip below highlights a deep punt style kick from a flyhalf that came from his team winning their own ball off a lineout.
As you will see, he made a lightning quick assessment that there was space deep behind the defence. Still, with pressure approaching fast, he was able to make the kick.
A great case in point here, that not all kicks need to look pretty to get a result.
The key to this was his ability to ‘load up’ quickly, make reasonable contact, yet carry his weight through the ball to achieve the distance and roll.
It’s amazing how often the good players can get a result from kicking ugly.
It may have appeared to look a little lucky, but I can assure you that players that practice under close oncoming pressure like this will make many more ‘lucky’ kicks than those that kick against fresh air.
It was a great option kick, from around the (defensive) 10m line requiring only a 35-40m flight with roll to achieve a result.
If the defence is up then ball flight only needs to clear opposition players then get good shape on the roll..
Watch the clip (20secs) and observe:
* The kicker’s ability to make best use of very little ‘kicking space’ under pressure
* The distance & speed of the flight, and subsequent roll to touch
* The chase back from the green team unable to stop the ball rolling out
And here’s the response in the very next play from the lineout!
So the green team win a free kick from their lineout after the original kick in focus. Watch the fast reaction, quick tap, amount of player traffic and ensuing punt kick to safety (opposition half!)
A great response indeed, and overall, two very well executed kicking plays!
By Stuart Lierich