Wadsco club rugby zone Club spirit essential
start to go wrong, it can be a very lonely place.
My first club stint was at Belfast as a player and coach and we were struggling. I remember saying to them, if you roll your sleeves up and do what we ask of you, then I’ll take you anywhere in the world you want to go. They looked at me incredulously, went away to think about it for a couple of weeks, and then came back and said they wanted to go to Hong Kong for the Tens tournament. I still remember all the fundraising we did and after I moved back to Marlborough, it became an annual trip for them.
The point is, nothing is unachievable – it all depends on the will of the people driving the clubs. I feel for the people running clubs because they have to deal with a lot of issues, and many of them are things we didn’t have to face back in my club days.
The key one is time. Society has changed, employers have greater expectations and family life takes a lot more. I don’t claim any expertise other than a rugby man, but I know clubs have to work very hard to bring people in and keep them happy, but it can be done.
Good club administrators and volunteers have my admiration because they Unity: Waitohi prop Ross Geldenhuys has galvanised the team into a winning unit. give up a lot of their own time and club rugby wouldn’t survive without them.
I look at a club like Waitohi which has had a lot of success this season. Their South African Super rugby prop Ross Geldenhuys has galvanised the team and leads well, but the star of that team isn’t Ross and he’d be the first to admit it. The star of Waitohi is the team. They play for each other and when the turning point of a game comes, their players step up.
My spies told me that they dominated Kahurangi up front in their 36-24 win on Saturday, but Kahurangi was livelier in the outside backs and they just kept coming back. They showed a lot of spirit and that’s great to see from a young team who bring some much-needed enthusiasm.