What is a fetcher in rugby?

Updated: 10/19/2022
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12y ago

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A fetcher can be anyone on the team, ie the Lion's 15 is a very good fetcher.

'Fetching' refers specifically to the role of being first to the breakdown i.e. a tackle, in order to challenge immediately and aggressively for the ball in order to secure it for the side not in possession (a turnover)

Richie McCaw, the NZ captain is usually described as the best 'fetcher' in world Rugby today (2009). Other notable 'fetchers' include Rossouw and Brussouw from SA and Phil Waugh of Australia.

Not unusually, the term 'fetcher' seems to have been coined in the Southern Hemisphere, where more games are played on hard, fast grounds compared to the NH.

Some No.7's in the NH do not focus as much on the role of 'fetching' e.g. David Wallace and Martyn Williams (IRL & WAL respectively) who are more noted for their strong running and ball-handling skills.

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