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Pick and Poke

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This refers to a style of attacking play where teams look to pick holes and poke at gaps in the opposition’s rear-guard.

Though not uniquely, it tends to lend itself to facing blanket defences where the option of direct and pacey running tends to have a limited value.

The phrase typically means to pick and poke at potential gaps in the opposition’s defence, very much insinuating that they are testing the water, with non-committal approaches whereby they can turn back and recycle the ball if the line-break doesn’t appear to be on.

It’s generally insinuated that it’s a very methodical approach to attacking with a slow build up where possession is deemed paramount until such time as a very clear opportunity at a line-break appears i.e. picking at poking at gaps to see if they turn into potential line-breaks