DEFENCE: SWITCHING IN THE ‘V’

Advance your team’s ‘V’ defence by teaching them how to work together and switch to cover each other’s opponents when beaten on a longer drive.

NOTE: Ensure your players have mastered the “BASIC DEFENCE IN THE ‘V'” skill before moving onto this more advanced skill.

Difficulty
Intermediate-advanced

Players
4+

Equipment
1 ball
2 bibs

Coaching points
– Ensure players have mastered the “Basic defence in the ‘V'” skill before coaching them on this more advanced skill.
– This skill uses the same principles as “Defence in the ‘V'”, but gives defensive players an option for covering a long drive as a unit if a teammate is beaten on a longer drive.
– The first option for the two defenders is always to use the “V” or “squeeze” tactic to restrict the driving player’s space and force them back up the court, as well as creating an opportunity for a tip or intercept.
– However, if the defender who is covering the driving player is beaten and the driving player is going to get in behind the defenders, the defender with hands over the ball needs to recognise that and move quickly into the backspace to cover the driving player and attempt to intercept the ball.
– The hands-over defender’s position is critical – they need to angle their body slightly and widen their vision so they can see both the player with the ball and the driving player.
– Look for the intercepting player to turn their shoulders and run quickly with a few sharp steps to cover the long drive, and then elevate up off both legs to take the ball with two hands. You’ll find that players will jump too early and lunge at the intercept, so encourage them to take the extra couple of quick steps and give themselves a better chance of grabbing the ball.
– Using half a court (lengthways), work through 4-5 repetitions of each player covering the long drive on each side (the teammate initially covering the driving player will need to allow them through, for the sake of the drill).
– Advance the sequence by having the defenders perform a tight “V” to stop the first drive and force the driving player back up the court to receive the ball. The defenders then switch roles and allow the second drive through, so the hands-over player will be channelling their opponent, and the initial defender will be covering the long drive.
– Advance the skill further by playing it out all the way down the court (still using half a court). If the defenders get a turnover, simply stop and reset attackers and defenders from that point.
– “Switching in the V” has applications all the way down the court, including GS/GA/WA defending after a turnover or WD/GD defending the second phase of a centre pass.

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