Defence, hunt like a pack

Here is what Rob Appleyard, RaboPro12 defence coach for Newport Gwent Dragons, says in the latest issue of International Rugby Coaching:
The Law for the Wolves: “For the strength of the pack is the wolf, and the strength of the wolf is the pack.”
In defence, we have started to use the metaphor of a wolf pack for this season. Looking at the Rudyard Kipling poem, the team understands that defence is only as strong as the individual. If there is a weak link then the defence is as weak as that link. That is well known, but defence also has to work as a “pack”.
We hunt, catch and kill as a wolf pack.
The hunt: Line organisation, on our feet (after rucks), communicating our tactics (blitz or drift), maintaining our ruck chain (players in position from the ruck outwards).
The catch: Our line speed, looking for strengths, looking for weaknesses.
The kill: Going for the turnover when the moment is right.
Therefore, in training and in matches, when we are in defence, we are aiming to make “kills” if we can. Those kills will come more often when the defence is working together, and not as individuals.

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