When You Find Yourself in the #4 Position

play polo polo lesson Aug 20, 2021

"What should I do when I find myself at the back, in the number 4 position?"

At some point, regardless of your level, every polo player will find themselves at the back, and will need to play the position appropriately.

If you find yourself at the back, you are then "the back" and you have to be defensive.

In this polo lesson I have some tips on how to play the position effectively. 

Transcription: When You Find Yourself in the #4 Position

What should I do if I find myself at the back, in the number four position. Such a great question, that. And also we've got the video in the Academy of, 'What do I do when I end up at number four?' Because just remember guys, if you end up at number four, you are at back, you are defensive.

So, don't go and make a ride off when you're at number four. Because if you're on the right-hand side and you make a ride off, and that ball goes to the left, the player you've marked actually gets the ball, because he turns to the left, and he'll leave you on the outside of that turn. If you're on the right, and the ball is hit as an away backhand, he picks up the ball going there because you're on his left hand side.

If you get directly behind him, that's where you want to be, so that you are five meters behind him. But the biggest thing is, when you are there, when that backhand comes, to whichever side, don't turn and go to the ball, and go parallel to that player. You directly behind him and as that player turns go at him, forwards, make the ride off as he's turning.

They hate it, because they're busy and suddenly they've got a ride off. Now you own the player going back to the ball. So, you're always in an ascendant situation there. But you've got to start close, okay, and you've got to make that ride off going forward while they busy making the turn. Don't wait until they've made the turn and then try and do that, because now you're going to cross them and cause a foul.

But if you watching them, and as they start to turn you ride forward at them. They turn into you, and it's very easy to beat them and go back and you own the ball going backwards. So, at back, you are defensive. So, don't go there and start to make a ride off. It's the worst thing that you're going to do. Okay.

And also remember if you've directly behind a man, you're in his blind spot. So, if that ball's left behind, in front, and he dawdles, you can scoot past him, and go and get that ball. And you still attacking. You've got every option open for you, directly behind the man. You beat him going left. You beat him going, right.

If you go forward, and like those ride off's as I'm talking about. And you can also, often, get past and pick up that loose ball while he doesn't know you coming. So, the biggest thing is just don't make the ride off where you there. Be directly behind them, five meters behind him. And look, and pay attention to where he's turning to, if they get the ball.

If your team is attacking, you stay in that position. Okay. And if they miss it often, you can get past, make the ride off and get the ball anyway. So, that would be how I would look at that.

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