UR7a-side - The Tactics and the tricks of the trade by Matty Turner

Last week the UR7s Coaches briefly touched on styles of play be it in attack or defence, which they feel will be utilised by teams playing in the UR7a-side Series. The coaches this week went a little deeper into those styles and in some cases tactics that could be utilised by team.

So here are a few ideas for teams to use..


- You are playing against a team that has some wheels (speed) on the wing. Our suggestions are the following: If your defender in the middle is confident that he has the attack in the middle then your end defender can either take the space of the faster attacking player, which will take away time for that player to build up speed, If the middle defender isn't confident then you can use your sweeper to your benefit in this case. Send your sweeper across early to try and cut the faster player off on the outside.

- You are playing against a team with great footwork, This is actually very easy to defend as long as all your players on the same page and don't shoot out of the defensive line. Make sure that the you stay “connected” in your defensive line by communicating and working up together, players like this are looking for a few tails in a defensive line for example a inside defender being lazy.

- You are playing against teams with good basic skills, Unfortunately somethings you cant defend and thats what is great about 7s Rugby your skills being balls skills. Defensive and attacking skills will be tested and when some great skills are shown and the they score sometimes you just have to applaud it. Of course, work hard in defence, keep the pressure on and hope that you can grind out the mistake!

Now to the part that most players like doing


This is where the coaches feel the greatest difference in styles will be so lets get into it:

  • You back your fitness over your opposition, this is where you will play a more traditional style of sevens, which is rarely seen on the world series now. It is called the Wide Wide pull out. You move the ball to the end attacker who has a go on the outside but before he has been touched he puts the brakes on and plays it back to the 2nd from the end player who has tactically dropped into the “pocket” who then moves it to the opposite side and the process is repeated.

  • You have a more skillful side and want to use your touches to create overlaps, You setup hit up points and work players around corners to try and create overlaps or miss matches. You can expect to see bigger teams using this tactic to break up defensive lines and cause a little chaos.

Everything mentioned above are basic and are easily implemented into teams and take very little practice if at all. But everything mentioned above is by in no means at all the only way to approach this new and exciting concept, in all honesty the more different styles invented by teams the better as in some cases in 7s one of the greatest things to have in attack is unpredictability and that is where players can express themselves the most through this.

All the coaches are excited for UR7a-side to kickoff and cant wait to see the styles of play and the skills expressed by the teams entering.

Sign up for UR7a-side in South Africa here >>>

Two different regional series will running simultaneously one being based out in Stellenbosch and the other based in Cape Town Area, with Cape Town starting on the March 6th and Stellenbosch starting the 8th of March.

With a big finals day being played on the 8th of April where teams will battle for the overall title!