Fu­tu­re S­pring­boks?

Knysna-Plett Herald - - Sport - S­te­fan Goo­sen See mo­re p­ho­tos at www.knys­w­na­pletthe­rald.com

This past wee­kend, Knys­na and P­let­ten­berg Bay young­sters got to­get­her at Loe­rie Park in Knys­na to get a tas­te of rug­by in a sa­fe, non­con­tact ver­si­on of the ga­me un­der the Su­perS­port Let’s Play schools rug­by pro­gram­me.

On Sa­tur­day 15 Sep­tem­ber, se­ven schools in the a­rea con­ver­ged in Knys­na with both boys and gi­rls a­ged eig­ht to 13 playing in this mi­ni rug­by fe­s­ti­val ai­med at sharing the fun of the ga­me with as ma­ny child­ren as pos­si­ble.

The Let’s Play fes­ti­vals tar­get non­playing or dor­mant, and less-es­ta­blis­hed rug­by schools throug­hout the coun­try by not on­ly cre­a­ting a plat­form for the­se child­ren to be in­tro­du­ced to the ga­me but al­so by pro­vi­ding co­a­ching cli­ni­cs. On the day, the litt­le rug­by play­ers are ac­com­pa­nied by a co­ach, on the field, whi­le they are playing to gi­ve poin­ters as they go al­ong. The kids are al­so in­tro­du­ced to so­me ba­sic ru­les of the ga­me.

Wa­t­ching one of the ga­mes at Loe­rie Park’s field was qui­te a hu­mo­rous ex­pe­rien­ce for this jour­na­list. Al­re­a­dy you can see the­se e­a­ger boys and gi­rls ta­king on per­so­nas of their fa­vou­ri­te play­ers, thro­wing their hands up at the ruck w­hen the whis­t­le is blo­wn for a pen­al­ty e­ven though they cur­rent­ly ha­ve no i­dea how the pen­al­ty sy­stem works.

The­re we­re the mo­re si­ze­a­ble boys who, w­hen they success­ful­ly cal­led for the ball, he­a­ded in­to their op­po­nents li­ke South A­fri­ca’s Ten­dai “Be­ast” M­ta­wa­ri­ra, and the lan­ky, fas­ter boys he­a­ded straig­ht do­wn the tou­ch­li­ne as if pos­ses­sed by the spi­rit of C­heslin Kol­be. All the whi­le the com­ments they ma­de to e­ach ot­her cre­a­ted for ma­ny a gig­gle.

This y­e­ar’s fe­s­ti­val, held by Su­perS­port in part­ners­hip with SWD Rug­by and the de­part­ment of e­du­ca­ti­on, com­pri­sed Sun­rid­ge, Brac­ken­hill, Horn­lee, Chris Nis­sen, T­hem­be­lit­sha, Krans­hoek and Con­cor­dia P­ri­ma­ry. The win­ners mo­ve on to the clus­ter cham­pi­ons­hips in Ge­or­ge on 28 Sep­tem­ber. They are the U9 boys from Horn­lee, the U11 boys from Sun­rid­ge, and the U13 gi­rls from Con­cor­dia.

P­ho­tos: S­te­fan Goo­sen

T­hem­be­lit­sha P­ri­ma­ry’s te­am wa­tch a ga­me whi­le they wait for their turn on the field.

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