10.23.16: Prepared for contact

A ball carrier for the Columbus Rugby Club prepares for contact
against Palmer College of Chiropractic (Davenport, Iowa) in Bevelhymer Park near Columbus, Ohio.


Technical information

Nov. 15, 2014,
2:11 p.m.

40°6'59” N,
82°47'28" W
(Show in Google Maps)

Canon EOS 7D Mark II

Canon EF 600mm f/4L 


1/1400th second


We have a very strong men's amateur rugby program in Columbus, Ohio, and I try to get to a couple of games each season to grab some photos.

The Columbus Rugby Club, formed in 1975, plays against clubs from Louisville, Cincinnati, Chicago, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Kansas City and a number of other cities. Home games have been played at Rhodes Park, just west of downtown Columbus, and — more recently — at Bevelhymer Park east of Columbus.

While I'm still trying to figure out the best way to shoot rugby (and still trying to understand the rules), I've applied some basic photography techniques that have helped me get some quality shots. 

For instance, I shoot from a position that places an uncluttered background behind the action — no spectators, parked cars, etc. This avoids having objects in the photo that would draw the viewer’s eye from the action. That often means shooting from behind an end zone.

For this shot, I was tracking the ball with my 600mm f/4 super telephoto lens on my camera to enable me to get a tight shot of action in the middle of the field. I was able to get this shot of a Columbus ballcarrier watching a tackler and preparing for a hit.

Each week I will post a photo from my collection with an explanation of how I got the shot. Previous photos of the week are in the archives.