THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN DISTANCE AND SPEED OF RECYCLED BALL OF SUCCESSFUL AND UNSUCCESSFUL INTERNATIONAL RUGBY UNION TEAMS
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Performance analysis has become a key element used to aid coaching and feedback within team sports. Within rugby union performance analysis assists learning by analysing both individual and team performances. Set pieces, possession, territory and rucks have been highlighted as keys aspects of performance that determine success. Limited literature around rucks and the speed of recycled ball has left room for investigation. Therefore, the following study investigated the relationship between distance made and the speed at which the recycled ball was played from a ruck and whether this had an effect on winning performances. Videos from the 2013 6 Nations and 2013 Rugby Championships were used with four Southern and four Northern hemisphere teams analysed, two games for each team. SportsCode was the analysis system used to create a coding window with buttons enabling coding to be completed, in order to collect separate clips permitting time to be extracted and analysed in Microsoft Excel and SPSS. A Pearson’s correlation test revealed inconsistent correlations (p<0.05 and p<0.01) between distance and the speed of recycled ball (TG_RE) for successful and unsuccessful teams, as well as Northern and Southern hemisphere teams. It became clear that winning teams played the ball quickly (<3s) more frequently with 68.4% of rucks being fast compared to losing teams (62.1%). Nevertheless, a One-Way ANOVA text exposed no statistically significant differences between winning and losing teams (p<0.05). Successful performances saw quick ball being utilised more frequently than unsuccessful performances no matter how much distance was gained or lost although quick ball was exploited most when ground was gained (72%). The findings of the present study revealed winning performances using a greater percentage of quick ball more frequently than unsuccessful performances and the greatest percentage of quick ball being utilised when distance was gained before the ruck for winning, losing, Northern and Southern hemisphere teams. Therefore, the findings suggest that distance gained or lost does have an effect on the speed at which the recycled ball is played.
DEGREE OF BACHELOR OF SCIENCE (HONOURS) SPORT AND PHYSICAL EDUCATION
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