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Clubs hope for quick return

With the announcement last week that certain contact sports may resume training, it is yet unclear when rugby will be given the green light.

SA Rugby confirmed on Wednesday 24 June that it had sought and received clarification on queries relating to the return to non-contact training, while submitting its technical preparedness report.

“SA Rugby is reviewing the various options available to them to address the issues of training and the hosting of matches.

“This would ensure equality of preparation and create the environment for a return to competitive action. The actual date of return-to-training will be confirmed in due course,” read a statement released by SA Rugby last week.

WP Amateur Rugby manager Danny Jones says that while the revised regulations around sports during level 3 of lockdown do not include rugby, they remain focussed on being ready when the go-ahead is eventually given.

“Preparing to return to play includes many facets, not only do we need to be Covid-ready, but we also have to return stronger than before administratively, technically and in relation to the value we offer our members. We have been hard at work with return to play planning and are fortunate to have the guidance of SA Rugby and World Rugby.

“These guidelines offer tremendous value at local level and will assist clubs with a good understanding of what is required at club level,” states Jones.

Courses and webinars continue to be the order of the day, but more importantly, clubs are becoming more involved administratively.

“We have noticed that many clubs have deployed additional hands at their clubs to assist with matters such as player management and commercial portfolios.

“These are fantastic initiatives which lend itself to the spirit of volunteerism, which sees more hands on deck at club level and allows for specific expertise and focussed delivery.

“This is an important factor for the growth of WP Club Rugby as far too often the burden of work falls to one person,” adds Jones.

“On the coaching front, our WP Rugby level 2.5 course under the guidance of Jerome Paarwater and Nazeem Adams is gaining momentum.

“The initial wave of coaches on the course have included several weekly training sessions with the most recent being on how to prepare and present in the digital era.

“This session was particularly important for coaches as we see more online training. The skills of a coach in the future will certainly be very different from the coach of the past,” he explains.

Jones reiterated the importance of clubs to bring their respective administrations into compliance in order to be in a position to obtain funding more easily through the National Lottery Fund.

“We will shortly begin online sessions with our clubs to help them with the Lotto application forms.”

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