Strange Behaviour
So my dog Finn is a Border Collie cross German Shepherd, we got him when he was 18 months old -  so we obviously don't know what his previous home was like. He has many really strange things that he does but they are being dealt with. He is currently on antidepressants as he has been diagnosed with OCD from our vet. He has also had a cancerous lump removed from his neck and hasn't shown any signs of another. (We check regularly) Now for his really annoying habit, when we take him down the park and throw the ball the first 3-6 time he will run towards the ball and then lay down next to it and stare at us. When we get about half way towards him he will then get up and start running towards us without the ball. After the 3-6 times of him not bringing it back he will then run back with the ball. However, never actually directly to us, where ever we throw the ball he will ALWAYS return it to the right of us about 3 or so metres away. So we have to constantly walk to the right to get the ball. Does anyone know why he does this? Is it a common thing? Can or should we try to stop him from doing it?
I'm not good at explaining training, but several others on here are, so I will mention that I think you need to reverse chain this behavior and hope that someone else explains how you do it. I can tell you that you need to start at the end you want and teach that behavior and then teach the next behavior back and so on until you get to the part where you throw the ball. Some dogs just aren't natural fetchers.
Gotta love 'em.
As GM said if you want to teach him fetch, you need to back chain.
However it sounds like in his excitement to get the ball his herding instincts have kicked in, too funny.
I also have a BC x GSD?
My pup would also drop the ball a few feet from us. We went back and worked on proofing our recall inside the house with treats and praise and then outside the house.

Once we had a good recall I added the ball back to the situation inside the house (small controlled familiar environment) and when he dropped it a few feet away I would wait and he would pick it up and bring it the rest of the way... If he didn't then the game was done.

Once we had the concept down inside then we moved the fetch game to outside which brought back the dropping it a few feet away. I again waited him out and he would pick it up and bring it the rest of the way. I would keep the sessions short so the game ended with him wanting more which left him excited to do it again the next time.

He now has a retrieve better than my golden retrievers did. He loves the game and now fetches in the water and loves to catch frisbees out of the air. We will even be doing dock diving when he is old enough.

It was more just teaching him to understand the game part by part.

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