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Put your wrestler in the driver's seat: illustrating three pinning combinations from the crossfire drive position.

One of the more common dilemmas faced by the top wrestler is that while it's safer to stay behind the bottom man, it's necessary to come out to the side to work for a pin.

In fact, the bottom man can often score by catching the top man riding high (out to the side).

The Drive Series offers a solution to this problem. By controlling the bottom man's foot, the top man is able to work out to the side for the pin without fear of losing an easy reversal.

I would like to focus on a chain of three pinning combinations from the crossface drive positions, which begins with the top man capturing the shoelace and waist position to ensure control of the bottom man and then progressing through the chain to the first move that proves successful.

The Drive Series can be initiated from the referee's starting position [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 1 OMITTED] or from any similar top position during the action. Photo 2 shows the top man capturing the shoe lace and waist position that will prevent the opponent from escaping until he can free his foot giving the top man time to safely work for a pin.

The top man steps out to the side and captures the crossface shown in Photo 3 - staying up on his toes with his weight on his opponent.

This shoulder and crossface position is basic to all three links in the Drive Series chain.

The first link is the basic drive. If the bottom man maintains his hands and knees position, the top man should be able to drive him to his side [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 4 OMITTED] and then to his back [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 5 OMITTED].

The top man holds on to the foot until he drives the bottom man to his side. He must then release the foot and reach up the backbone [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 5 OMITTED] and work for the fall with this crossface-and-crotch pinning combination.

The second link in the chain is the crossface cradle. The bottom man, feeling the pressure of the top man's drive, will usually post his far leg [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 6 OMITTED] to prevent being turned.

The top man must then step his front foot toward the bottom man's head and drive the opponent's head toward the man's knee (Photo 7). Coaching point: Instruct your wrestler to "make him kiss his knees!"

The top wrestler now locks hands behind the bottom man's knee to capture a crossface cradle.

To take the bottom man to his back, it is necessary to switch sides [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 8 OMITTED] by swinging behind the bottom man. At this point, the top man can "rock the cradle" [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 9 OMITTED] and take the bottom man to his back.

The third link in the chain is the roll-through. The bottom man, once caught in the cradle [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 7 OMITTED], may square off on his knees [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 10 OMITTED] to avoid being rocked backward to his back.

In order to roll-through, the top man must tuck in tightly to the bottom man's side [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 11 OMITTED], pull firmly, and roll across his own back in order to plant the bottom man [ILLUSTRATION FOR PHOTO 12 OMITTED] on his.

The crossface drive position allows the top man to maintain control while working through the chain to exploit his opponent's weaknesses. The Drive Series thus puts your wrestler in the "driver's seat."
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Author:Sherman, Milt
Publication:Coach and Athletic Director
Date:Aug 1, 1996
Words:583
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