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JP Jones
15th-August-2011, 05:50
A kiwi friend of mine says of Ireland: "They need to consider their backline approach. They're still setting up too deep, then expecting to outflank defences. that hasn't worked against the modern sliding defence for about the last 12 years. Notice the best backlines are running their moves and delivering offloads up flat amongst the defence."

Discuss!

I think there's some merit in what he says.

JP Jones
15th-August-2011, 06:01
Maybe it's a little simplistic - Australia's Quade Cooper can set up deep too.

Humpty Dumpty
15th-August-2011, 06:02
Maybe it's a little simplistic - Australia's
Quade Cooper can set up deep too.

QC was found out when playing deep

Balla Boy
15th-August-2011, 06:09
It's a useful observation, but it needs a lot of qualification. There's no space in the inside or midfield of first phase any more. The aim, very often, is to go off the top of a line out and get wide quickly, where there's a chance of space because the 15 is judging his position, the 13 channel is wider and the flankers aren't there yet.


The ten needs to be up flat if you're looking to attack the line close in - the sort of line break that Darce will look for quite often.


If not, then all that's important is that the 12/13 have things sorted to hit gain line at least.


The other thing to consider is the discouraging of the blitz defence. We've been suspect in front of those in the past, and there's an extent to which if you go wide quickly you force the opposition to slide/drift, ceding you some advantage.


Worst case scenario is the one that has played out too often for Munster vs Leinster - 10 takes deep, hits 2nd receiver who is tackled. Some of our first phase play against them basically ends in Quarterback sackings.

the plastic paddy
15th-August-2011, 06:44
Maybe it's a little simplistic - Australia's Quade Cooper can set up deep too.

He set up deep in the last game in Eden park because he was scared of getting tackled and breaking a nail. Think Sexton tends to play a lot flater but the backline can only go as flat as the service they receive and that is dependent on not just snappy SH service but also quick gainline breaking ball.

Thomond78
15th-August-2011, 06:57
For Ireland, Sexton plays deeper than O'Gara. We've dealt with this
here, time and again. Look at the Scottish game, and the French
game, look at where they lie, and contrast.

It's also less about depth - blitz/umbrella defences are set up to deal
with people lying flat by cutting off the ball in the 12/13 channel and
forcing it back in to the defence tracking across - than what you do
with it. France like to lie deep, bring in runners on angles, and it
works.

antipopper
15th-August-2011, 07:37
That kiwi has a point,when they are trying to outflank a team could they at least not grubber it when it gets out to the wings.

Its odd they defend teams that do this really well, if they played a clone of themselves their defence would eat their attacks up all day.

JN.Allezdax.com
15th-August-2011, 07:42
One flat off-load from 3 is forward and is not penalized by a scrum. In a sense, if we remember the french try against the ABs for four years, the decisive off-load was flat, naturally forward, naturally, his honour Barnes did not see it, and NZ went home sooner as expected while England won the title in the absence of the great favourite, I can understand... smileys/wink.gif
This phase shows too the great influence that the Rugby League game took in the Rugby Union. Defenses, with two tacklers on the ball carrier is another exemple. Both phases (RU defense and flat off-load) are probably joined together.

Thomond78
15th-August-2011, 07:49
The problem isn't depth. It's being lateral. We need more runners
offering themselves from deep.

Leinster play quite deep, even allowing for the fact Sexton plays
flatter there. What they do is play deep, let the blitz/umbrella come
up, fix it - and then Nacewa or O'Brien come onto the inside ball from
deep and break the line. The French do something similar.
McGahanball, by contrast, is lying flat and shovelling it wide or lying
flat and going one-out, both of which rapidly get eaten up by a
blitz/umbrella.

Lying really flat came, originally, from League, via the Aussies. So,
again, people imported the League blitz/umbrella to snuff that out.
The logical solution to that then is the one Leinster and France use;
lie deeper, fix the defence and the FB/carrier breaks the line. Classic
Union; the 1997 ABs used Cullen like that and were lethal. Sooner or
later, the blitz/umbrella defence will lose its nerve, pull in and flatter
to cover the FB offering himself into the line - and then your wingers
can get around them, and the FB finish off on the inside ball when the
defence scrambles.

All things are cyclical.

Old Dog
15th-August-2011, 07:52
In a sense, if we remember the french try against the ABs for four years, the decisive off-load was flat, naturally forward, naturally, his honour Barnes did not see it, and NZ went home sooner as expected while England won the title in the absence of the great favourite, I can understand... smileys/wink.gif




Actually, that RWC title was won by South Africa!

JN.Allezdax.com
15th-August-2011, 08:04
In a sense, if we remember the french try against the ABs for four years, the decisive off-load was flat, naturally forward, naturally, his honour Barnes did not see it, and NZ went home sooner as expected while England won the title in the absence of the great favourite, I can understand... smileys/wink.gif




Actually, that RWC title was won by South Africa!




C'est la honte absolue! Old Dog, thx for youy help. I just threw my whiskey and wine bottles through the window, I swear I will only drink mineral water now, and I asked for an appointment by my Doc to get something for the brain. I apologize. http://kay.smiley.free.fr/images/1355.gif

Viigand
15th-August-2011, 08:32
The problem isn't depth. It's being lateral. We need more runners
offering themselves from deep.




Sounds like McGahanball smileys/smile.gif

15th-August-2011, 08:34
You cannot expect a dog to play fetch without a stick nor a backline to run for scrumhalves who are sedentary. My future optimism lies in Connor Murray.

Thomond78
15th-August-2011, 08:48
The problem isn't depth.
It's being lateral. We need more runners offering themselves from
deep.


Sounds like McGahanball smileys/smile.gif

Standing still, two yards behind the gain-line, one-out, is NOT offering
yourself from deep!

outside inside
15th-August-2011, 09:20
For me the problem is lack of variation and speed of passing, we never use BOD on a switch to attack the 10,12 channel or just as a decoy . Opposition are not held and just drift wide, we have used blindside winger inside 10 but only Bowe it seems can hold on to the flat pass .Our best strike moves are off LO with TOL peel with Bowe support or 8,9,13 off the scrum .When Murray came on it was noticable how much furtherwide ROG was able to standand we were able toout flankFrance , the speed and distance of his pass opens up the outside oppositionhaveto cover the inside first b4 they can drift .Would love to see Murray start with Sexton and see howour backline goes .

sewa
15th-August-2011, 09:24
With no pace in either centre your options are very limited. Neither BOD nor Darcy are anywhere near the pace they once had. Makes us very easy to defend against

Thomond78
15th-August-2011, 09:57
For me the problem is lack of variation and
speed of passing*, we never use BOD on a switch to attack the 10,12
channel or just as a decoy . Opposition are not held and just drift
wide, we have used blindside winger inside 10 but only Bowe it seems
can hold on to the flat pass .Our best strike moves are off LO with
TOL peel with Bowe support or 8,9,13 off the scrum .*When Murray
came on it was noticable how much further*wide ROG was able to
stand*and we were able to*out flank*France , the speed and distance
of his pass opens up the outside opposition*have*to cover the inside
first b4 they can drift .*Would love to see Murray start with Sexton
and see how*our backline goes .**

That was always Stringer's greatest gift to the backs. Watch BOD's
third try in Paris, 2000; ROG is able to lie between 10 and 12 and
holds the inside up, our 12 pulled their 12 in and ROG hit BOD with a
flat pass just as he hit the hole that had been pulled in the 12/13
channel.

We should be doing that now, lying deep and coming up to fix their
defence. 12/13 is the transition for a blitz/umbrella; you cut off the
ball there to force it back, but if you can't, you have to slide from
there. So, 13 has to make decisions, which means you can make the
wrong ones.

So: 10 & 12 lie deep and wide on a good pass, come back in against
the grain of the up-and-out and pull their 10/12/13 in. 13/11 pull their
13/14 out, and 10 or 13 bring in Jones, Kearney, SOB or Earls on a
flat pass to 13 an inside ball to the runner. That's basically the French
try the other night. If their 13 shoots up instead of sliding, the runner
takes a pop off 13, hits the hole, commits the sweeper and puts 14/11
away; the Scottish try when McFadden shot up being a good example.

Red October
15th-August-2011, 11:09
Honestly don't think it's the passing that's the issue; lack of
midfield pace certainly is; but what's worst of all for me, is
that we are not offering multiple receiver options to the
ballcarrier/would-be passer. If we were offering this, and
still getting nowhere, then we'd have a problem with
passing.

We are not forcing defences to adjust quickly. Not making
them pause for that fraction that does the damage. We're
very straightforward to defend against - too easy
altogether for defenders to quickly decide which man to
pick up.

Right now, the repertoire seems to be that the ball goes out
to the wing, and the only question is where does the FB hit
the line, or who (if anyone) gets skipped. It's staggeringly
lacking in creativity.

I'd love to think we're keeping some stuff under wraps, but
recent history has taught me that this is likely far too
optimistic.

lorianne
15th-August-2011, 13:01
You cannot expect a dog to play fetch without a stick nor a backline to run for scrumhalves who are sedentary. My future optimism lies in Connor Murray.



Definitely spot on there. Murray definitely deserves a seat on that plane to NZ. He is going to be the best scrum half this country has ever seen because he has a mind of his own. He knows the best way to deliver the ball out to the backs while players like Reddan and O'Leary (Why is he still getting selected to be on the squad, never mind start?) are completely predictable.

NotreDameRFC
15th-August-2011, 13:39
welcome to the forum..... but pink ? seriously...my eyes

Eamo
15th-August-2011, 21:06
You cannot expect a dog to play fetch without a stick nor a backline to run for scrumhalves who are sedentary. My future optimism lies in Connor Murray.



Agreed

blackwarrior
15th-August-2011, 21:36
I agree with the Kiwi that we sometimes look too deep [edit]. But the backline setup is surely a factor of the anticipated time it will take to receive the ball from the exact moment the forward wins it and the No 10 is able to play/release it?


Some of Ireland's best tries in recent years were set pieces off the lineouts because it was a strength and we could get ball from hooker to 10 rapidly. But the keytime taken is from whenthe hooker throws until the 10 releases. Now the scrumhalf's speed is partly a factor, but we scored tries from these situations with or without Stringer.


More relevant for Ireland is the time taken from ruck ball until 10 releases. Now that is not a traditional strength. (Strangely is has been for Leinster for several years, even back in 2006, yet Munster didn't always rely on it). Ireland always struggle here, meaning that the time taken to deliver the ball to 10 has a huge bearing on where he stands.


Watching NZ, they are so good at minimising the time it takes from getting playable ruck ball to when 10 plays/releases. We've never had that skill. So our Kiwi friend has a point, and most of us probably agree with him.


But can he suggest a way to overcome the cause of this?

Buceph
15th-August-2011, 22:15
I agree with the Kiwi that we sometimes look too flat.

The Kiwi referenced in the OP is saying we're too deep, not too flat. Although why we care what some Kiwi is saying I don't know. They're not naturally blessed or specially endowed with rugby knowlededge.

I missed the Scotland match, so I have only the French match to go on what we our backline are up to for the world cup. And I didn't pay much attention to how deep or shallow our line was, it was too bad a match to get much of a hold on anything. You really need a match where you're the dominant team to get an idea of how the backline are instructed to play. (Or you can watch a lot of bad matches.)

One of the big things people talk about is how fast ball is recycled. To me that has little effect on the opposite backline (at least any of decent quality) because they should be set no matter the situation. If they're not set play is broken and it comes down to individual skill. The real issue with recycling of ball is how well set are the forwards in open field play defense. Faster ball and the backline are on there own, and it comes down to individual attack skill more than set attack "plays"

I've been told Laurie Fisher was a huge advocate of very heavily regimented forward open play, in defense and attack. And I think Munster's McGahanball is more a sign of that than anything else. We often had the 6/7/8 standing outside the outhalf in the 12 channel, they'd bash the ball up and try and offload to a centre who would hopefully have room off broken play fringes to attack into forward created space. Deccie seems to be a bigger fan of the traditional use of the backrow to run at the 10 and create space that way. With both situations recycled ball is important becuase it's natural for a forward to go to ground for the ruck, and it's upsetting the central field and resulting quick ball that's needed to create space elsewhere. I think this is why with Murray we saw a better attack against France, he's simply faster in both decision and passing.

With Munster we often had the one of the backrow stand outside the 10 in the 12 channel. I am certain McGahan was looking for quick passed offload ball from the backrow to set Earls/Tuitupou/Mafi into immediate fringe space. I don't think any of our backrow are good enough for this, they're just not the pseudo-centres we need for that. I think it's more difficult for a player to go into contact and draw players than it is to take the offload ball from that and use the space created. (This is something David Wallace is absolutely excellent at.) Rob Henderson was described as a big bosh merchant, but he was excellent at drawing in multiple people, pushing forward with them, and creating space that, at the time we the likes of Foley and Williams in the forwards and the likes of Halstead in the backs to take the ball into that space created.

With Ireland we don't have our backrow looking to go into contact in the centre, in fact we barely have our centres looking to go into contact. And when they do we're definitely not interested in creating quick play in the space. The reasons for this are part Deccie's logic, and partly because we don't have anyone on the fringes of ruck and in the 9/10 channel keeping the opposition backrow centred around their rucks. We haven't had an attacking 10 in donkeys years, we weren't playing that kind of game, but at the time we had an upperhand in set pieces to allow for a more tactical game. Something we don't have anymore. The Kiwi is correct, we are looking to our wings to create space. But we're not finding it because either the blitz is coming up and "sacking" (to use a Handegg term) our players or because they're on a drift that can easily squeeze us out. The sacking is happening because we're simply not set up for any real attacking centre play. No-one is looking for the offload (although I think that's the most difficult thing to organise at the moment.) Strings, Reddan, and TOL aren't going to attack and like to have a to