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Sevens Practical Session


  1. Align so that you can attack outside in.
  2. Be deep enough to accelerate onto the ball.
  3. Greet the ball early
  4. Hold the defender before passing
  5. Recreate the space by pulling the pass back.
  6. The pass is only as good as the ease with which it is caught.
  7. Reload so that you can move into play.


1. Stationary Passing:

In groups of 1-6 stand 3-6metres apart in an attack line. Stand on inside leg and pass the ball back and forth along the line. This should ensure that the passer does not drift with the pass. Increase the spacing, as the players become stronger passers. Emphasize pass accuracy and ease of catching.

2. Passing in Three Waves:

a. Unopposed

  1. Use different colour cones to create the gain line, off-side/ defence line, attack line and tackle line.
  2. Align three lines 2 attacking lines and 1 defence lines of 5-6 players.
  3. The first attacking line completes passing the ball along the line using the space between the attack line and the tackle line.
  4. The ball is then passed to the “defence” line to attack in the opposite direction.
  5. When they get to the other side pass the ball to the second attack line to do the same passing to the first line and so on.
  6. Add the halfback pass.

b. Opposed with the attacking wave having an overlap:

  1. Moving the lines further apart may help this.
  2. Should the one attacker advantage not lead to success increase the number of attackers or reduce the number of defenders to increase their success.
  3. Each line has a turn as the attack line and as the defence line with the lines now moving towards each other.
  4. The attack line has one attacker more than the defence so they can practice the overlap.

c. Add in the extra player entering from behind the attack line into the space between 2 defenders.

3. Practicing Using Extra Attackers

  1. Use cones to mark out a gain line and 2 goal lines 20-30metres apart.
  2. Group the players outside the touchline at the gain line.
  3. The coach calls out 2 numbers the first being the number to attack and the second the number to defend the attack being greater than the defence. The number will depend on the competency of the attack.
  4. Each group will go in opposite directions around the corner flag and play towards each other within the field.
  5. To simulate the extra attacker, have all but the extra attacker enter play half the distance to the corner flag with the extra attacker entering play around the corner flag so they enter play from depth to penetrate.
  6. Start in limited space, 15-a-side space and increase this to 7-a-side space.
  7. Add all attacking players must give and take 2 passes before they get to the goal line after penetrating

4. Lateral Reloading Around a 20-22metre Square:

  1. This activity can be unopposed or opposed.
  2. Use the boundary lines of the square as the gain lines.
  3. Create 4 defence lines inside the square and 4 attacking lines outside the square one of each on each side of the square.
  4. Practice passing and defending around the square with the attack re-aligning on each side.
  5. The coach stands in the centre of the square to correct errors, as the attack will always be running towards the coach.
  6. Change the direction to test re-alignment.
  7. Extensions:
  • Have a player entering the attack line from each side of the square so that penetration through the defence can occur.
  • Those in the attacking line immediately support the penetrator. Make a number of passes before scoring on the opposite side of the square.
  • Introduce a second defence line that defends from the opposite side of the square.


  1. Use cones to create a 10-15metre channel with cones 1-2metres apart with “gates” 2-5 metres apart.
  2. Led by the ball carrier have 3-4 support players supporting linear.
  3. Support in depth so you can run onto the pass from behind the passer.
  4. At each gate evade the gate to the left or right.
  5. Remember the space you create to pass into is the space you have moved from.
  6. Be able to pass/ offload into this space.
  7. Expect support to be running into the space that has been created.
  8. Use the offload that best fits the situation:
    • Orthodox pass.
    • Arms through pass.
    • Chest pass from the ground.
    • Hit and spin by “rolling into contact and “gut” passing.
  9. Add a player at each gate to defend initially with a shield, then a low tackle and finally a tackle at the level of the ball.
  10. When support players get ahead of the ball carrier/ passer insist that they reload so that they can move into play.
  11. Extensions:
    • After the last gate form a ruck to simulate drawing the defence to the ball and to create space with offside lines.
    • Form a lateral attacking line and move the ball to the lateral space the defence will have moved from.
    • Use the defenders from each gate to form a lateral defence line to oppose the attack.
    • Play laterally if there is an overlap to score.
    • If there is not an overlap play down a channel in linear support at a miss-match in the attacks favour to go forward.
    • Score or repeat the overlap/ lateral support play and score or play linear support to score.


  1. Offloading near and in contact - Truck and Trailer in 3’s:


Role Play, Evasion, Tackling, Offloading, Falling in the tackle, Support play and Role change. 

  • In a square 10metres square divide the team into 3’s, 2 attackers one with a ball and one defender.
  • There may be a number of 3’s simulating the congestion in a game.
  • The ball carrier runs anywhere in the square. The defender adjusts his/her position, so the player is in front of the ball carrier. The second defender follows the ball carrier far enough behind to support and adjust to the running path of the ball carrier.
  • On the coach’s whistle the defender moves in to tackle the ball carrier offloads to the second attacker coming from depth.
  • The defender becomes the support player, the ball carrier becomes the defender and the support player who has received the ball will be the ball carrier.
  • Allow the players to do this randomly when they are ready without the coach blowing the whistle.

Passing/ Offload Options.

1 – Step and pass into the space / reload behind third player.

2 – Arms through pass.

3 – Chest pass.

4 – Hit and Spin Explanation:

  • Run at the defender on an outside in running line.
  • Drive into the defender with the outside shoulder.
  • Turn “back-on” to the tackler so the ball carrier’s body is between the tackler and the ball.
  • “Wheel into the space the ball carrier has driven the tackler from and either offload using a “gut” pass to the support players mid-rift or accelerate into the space and run down the field.


Start from cones setting up:

  • The gain line,
  • Attack line,
  • Tackle line and
  • Defence line.

Sequence of Play from Line-out – maul/ run – linear – ruck – lateral:

  1. Out-maneuvering on the ground to get possession.
  2. Control the ball and form a maul.
  3. From the maul “peel” into space and use linear play.
  4. Pass the ball so that it is general play and the defence can be “off-side” within the Law.
  5. Play down the channel the ball is in and accept the tackle to create time and space based on the formation of a ruck or a maul.
  6. With the defence having been drawn in use lateral play to attack and score.

Sequence of Play from Scrum – linear – maul – linear – lateral.

  1. Upon contact bind to get a fast getaway while delaying the opposition.
  2. Control the hook.
  3. The first ball carrier goes forward immediately so that all teammates can be in position to support by moving towards the ball.
  4. Use linear support to go forward and draw the defence to the ball creating attacking space that the attack can pass laterally to, to score.
  5. The formation of a ruck or a maul can create space across and down the field.
  6. In addition, the players can peel off the maul to go further forward.
  7. See notes above re attacking reverse drift defence.

Sequence of Play from Kick-offs – short and long – both for the kicking team and receiving team.

  1. Shallow Kick Off:
    • Kicking team:
      • The target area is as close to the 10metre as possible with the height of the kick allowing sufficient to for attacking players to contest the ball.
      • The line of running for jumpers/catchers should be from the side arcing into the flight of the ball so that, in leaping to catch the ball, the player is back on to the opposition. This ensures any deflections are knockbacks to support players.
      • Support beyond and behind the ball.
      • Upon recovering the ball play linear so that all 6 players support the ball carrier.
    • Receiving team:
      • Cover all options, to the left, right and the centre of the field.
      • Be able to move into the ball to make the catch.
      • Use the lifted player as a decoy to contest the ball so that a player behind can more easily catch it.
      • Support around the ball to contest deflections.
      • Upon recovering the ball play linear so that all 6 players support the ball carrier.
  2. Long Kick Off:
    • Kicking Team:
      • Kick to space and to one side of the field to reduce the receiving team’s pass/ run options.
      • Have an aligned 5-6 player chase to stop the run/ pass option and contest the tackled ball to, eventually regain possession at the tackle and post tackle.
      • Have 1-2 sweepers regain possession from a kick.
      • Reload so that the attack has numbers to run and pass from recoverable kicks. D>A – linear attack and A>D – lateral attack.
    • Receiving Team:
      • Based on the kicking teams chase line. If there are few chasing - reload and use the overlap.
      • Many chasing – kick for territory and chase.