Osh: Research workshop with RCA to raise awareness of women’s rugby and player recruitment.

On Wednesday 23 February, Auch Rugby Club organized a rugby master class for girls aged 14 to 18. The club wants to promote women’s rugby and develop a cadet team.

After a few words from the board members, about fifteen young girls went on a tour of the Burrek field in Osh. Then athletes aged 14 to 18 stand next to the grounds, in two columns, and perform the exercises proposed by one of the coaches. Half of them are taking part in rugby training for the first time as part of a training workshop organized by the Auscitain Club.

Passes, scenarios, touches... Many exercises were suggested

Passes, scenarios, touches… Many exercises were suggested
DDM – Sebastien Lapeyrère

“Every year we organize mixed discovery days,” recalls Philippe Ducoussaud, head of training/youth center at Rugby Club Osh (RCA). “But for the first time we are offering training so that young women can discover rugby.” This Wednesday, February 23rd, each player on the cadet team (ages 15-18) was invited to bring along a friend who does not play oval ball. Therefore, the training is adapted. As before, in two columns, the participants work out the transfer back.

An opportunity for these one-day rugby players to discover the sport and possibly later or quickly integrate into an RCA cadet team, one of the few in the department with a Lombez-Samatan team. “Through these promotions we want to connect with as many girls as possible,” explains François Andorra, one of the team’s coaches. “Women’s rugby is booming and we also want to grow our group.”

Loss of energy in adolescence

Teams under 14 are mixed. “About a third of our workforce is made up of women,” says Philippe Ducoussaud. “But with nearly 50% of the cadets then playing as adults, the transition between Rugby School and Under 18s remains difficult.” There are no players from the Auscitaine school among the cadets this year. So RCA wants to work on this transition while continuing to develop its workforce, which is mostly from outside Osh.

Moreover, the ranks of women’s teams have already been replenished. “Covid-19 has led to a reduction in the total number and therefore in the number of women,” says Didier Nugues, an employee. “Before the crisis, we had a partnership with IUT Osh, which had a university team. But the latter did not reform this year.” Therefore, management members rely on the support of the club, as well as high school rugby clubs and sports teachers, to enrich their teams in this city of ovals.

The purpose of this day was to raise awareness among young athletes and, why not, get them involved.

The purpose of this day was to raise awareness among young athletes and, why not, get them involved.
DDM – Sebastien Lapeyrère

“And it also starts from these days,” says Francois Andorra. By offering this workout this Wednesday, during which passes, scripts and touchdowns are linked, the club wants to raise awareness among newcomers and thus complete and renew the cadet staff, which currently has about twenty players.

Because if at the moment the under-18s are playing at 10, the long-term goal “is to build a rugby team at 15 and keep that human side,” confirms Francois Andorra. It will also strengthen the workforce of the senior staff.” So the presence of a few new young players this Wednesday seems “encouraging” for a coach who wants to “perpetuate this action and work in depth” to continue the development of women’s rugby in Osh.

On the side of the RCA boys

This weekend the First Team and hopes travel to Anglet, scheduled to start at 15:30 for Fed 1 (13:15 for hopes). In order to encourage the Red and Whites, the official RCA fan club One for All, All for XV is organizing a bus ride. The meeting is held at 8 am at the Mouzon parking lot in Osh. Spectators must bring their own food. Coffee will be offered. Wearing a mask on the bus will be mandatory. Fan club members will have to pay 20 euros; for non-members the trip will cost 25 euros. Reservations required by phone 06 78 04 50 34 by Friday 25 February. One for All, All for XV also organizes bus services to Tiros and Saint-Jean-de-Luz in March and April.