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Rugby goes to schools

Over the next week several secondary and primary school students will be exposed to the sport of rugby.

The Barbados Rugby Football Union (BRFU), in conjunction with World Rugby, will be hosting two sessions aimed at exposing more youngsters to the excitement of rugby as part of the Get Into Rugby (GIR) programme.

On June 20, the GIR Touch Rugby Secondary School Tournament will kick off at Harrison College at 1 p.m. The secondary schools taking part are hosts Harrison College, Queen’s College (winners of the last such event in 2015), Christ Church Foundation, Deighton Griffith and Princess Margaret.

Seventy-five students are expected to take part and the excitement is building. The tournament is touch rugby only (no tackling) as most of the participants are relatively new to the sport and GIR Barbados is promoting safety above all else, conforming strictly to the guidelines set out by World Rugby, the governing body of rugby union.

On June 25, the primary schools will have their day in the sun at the Garrison Savannah. Kick-off time is 10 a.m. Schools taking part are St. Philip Primary, Charles F. Broome, Wesley Hall, Blackman-Gollop and St. George Primary.

Some of the youngsters who will be involved in the rugby initiative.

Some of the youngsters who will be involved in the rugby initiative.

Latest GIR Barbados statistics indicate that more than 30 students from St Philip Primary and over 75 from Charles F. Broome are active in the Get Into Rugby initiative, providing a large pool of talent and future rugby players should they decide to stay with the sport and progress to full contact and age-grade competition.  GIR Barbados has been active in several primary and secondary schools since 2015, and enthusiasm is growing among the students, who enjoy the tag and touch rugby sessions.

In July, the BRFU will be hosting the Bishop Anstey High School Girls Xs team for two matches at the Garrison, as part of their long-term plan to grow and develop the sport locally and to provide exposure for the local youth teams.

Also in July-August, the BRFU will be holding a Sevens tournament for local teams, as a run-up event to celebrating the debut of Rugby Sevens as an Olympic Sport at the Rio Olympics.

And in December, the inaugural Rugby World Barbados Sevens will take place in Holetown with 20 senior men’s teams, 12 senior women’s teams, eight U20 men’s teams, eight U20 women’s teams expected to participate. (PR)

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