Core samples or drill cuttings from boreholes drilled in coal seams are used in direct measurements of gas content in coal. In soft coal seams, core samples are difficult or sometimes impossible to obtain due to poor borehole stability such as large borehole deformation and borehole collapse, drill cuttings have to be taken and used. Due to their faster initial gas desorption rates, drill cuttings need to be taken rapidly and accurately at given positions during borehole drilling to ensure the accuracy of gas content measurements. To meet these sampling requirements of drill cuttings, a new sampling-while-drilling (SWD) system has been developed. The SWD system is based on a special design of double-tubing drill rods and a reversed circulation of pressurized air. A field test of the SWD system was carried out with satisfactory results. This paper presents the principle and results of the field test of the SWD system.