Week 6

The positions of AFL – Forwards

Roving Forwards 

An important part of a Roving forward’s (also referred to as a small forward) game is the ability to read the play of the ball and where the contest is going to be happening.

A Roving forward must always be in front of the contest when the marking forwards are attempting to mark (but not get in the way of the marking forward). When the ball hits the ground at a contest inside 50 the roving forward must have clean hands to crumb and secure the ball. A good roving forward is also opportunistic and can convert opportunities to goals.

The roving forwards can also set the defensive pressure for a team, by making tackles and out-hustling their opponents to stop the defending team shift from defence to offence quickly.

Watch the video below of some of Cyril Rioli’s highlights. Note the tackling pressure and how he uses different kicks to allow him the best opportunity to score goals from a variety of situations.

Marking Forwards

A Marking forward (sometimes referred to as a tall forward) must be able to take marks overhead or on the lead. They need to be able to use their body to manipulate their opponent so they have the best chance to mark the football. A marking forward are the primary goal kickers for a side so a great set-shot is a must. As well as that, they need to be mobile enough to lead up field to help enter the ball inside the attacking 50, or create space for the other marking forwards (using a dummy lead).