Thanks for your replies. Although I do not quite agree. You see, getting sound basics and train effectivly, I know that. The problem I´d like to discuss is beyond that.
It is about dealing with a skilled attacker, who has learned to strike fast and consecutively, and who knows how to conceal his next actions.
It is about defending against someone different from the usual Aikido-uke, which doesnt know to punch without hurting himself in case he´ll hit and who only knows the ritualized attacks of training.
In that situation, it becomes very difficult to get into any technique at all.
(Jakob, from your answer I do have the suspicion you did not experience that.)
Of course you can use a throw against -say - ryote tori against - say - a straigt punch. But you will have to alter the beginning of the technique decicively. And if you dont train for that you wont manage to get into the throw. If you dont train against strikes you wont cope with them. If you are training badminton you wont win tennis.
( I should remark that there are no straight punches or kicks in my style, and what I´ve seen in other styles didnt convince me.)
You see, I ´ve met many black belts in Aikido and very few of them I´d trust to be able to defend themselves. The few ones who probably could had studied other martial arts as well.
Ian, I´d like to point out that moving off the center line is a very good idea, but it is not the golden recipe to master all encounters, because a fist is very much faster than a body. How did you get along with WT´s chain strikes, if you ´ve ever tried ?