The Ospreys Community Development team actively helped 20 clubs across the region to recruit new players for their mini and junior sections thanks to a series of club development sessions held across the region during the 2010/11 season.
Clubs in all four corners of Ospreylia benefited from the sessions, which saw Development Officers visit primary schools in their catchment areas to deliver ‘introduction to rugby’ sessions and to promote a special club development night, inviting interested children along to find out a bit more – and in many cases, it is the first time that the children have ever tried out rugby.
The club development nights then see the relevant club inviting all their age-grade teams along to participate in the session along with the newcomers, where they will enjoy a series of training drills taken by members of the Ospreys squad, providing a never to be forgotten rugby experience.
Clubs to have benefited in this way last season were:
Bonymaen, Briton Ferry, Bryncoch, Cefn Cribwr, Dunvant, Fall Bay, Gorseinon, Kenfig Hill, Loughor, Maesteg, Morriston, Penclawdd, Penlan, Pontardulais, Porthcawl, South Gower, Tondu, Tonmawr, Tonna and Vadre.
WRU/Ospreys Regional Community Manager, Ben Rose, said the success of the club development sessions were solid evidence of the commitment to increasing the player base in the region:
“Club development sessions have proven to be very successful throughout 2010/11 and are really helping to increase the player base at the very bottom of the development pyramid which will, in time it is hoped, lead to more players coming through into the adult game.
“The Ospreys and the WRU are committed to ensuring the long term sustainability of the game in Wales. It’s important to stress that it’s not just about attracting new players, it’s also about rewarding those youngsters already at the clubs for their commitment, and encouraging them to keep on looking to develop their game, which is why they play a full part in the sessions with Ospreys players.
“Long term sustainability is about development from within, something which is central to everything the Ospreys are about. A strong and thriving community game, at mini, junior, youth and senior level, will inevitably have a positive impact on the professional game, with more players coming through the pathway.”
Any clubs interested in hosting club development sessions with the Ospreys Community Development team should contact their local Development Officer for more details.
To watch a video of the club development night at Dunvant RFC click here
To watch a video of the club development night at Tonmawr RFC click here
To watch a video of the club development night at Kenfig Hill RFC click here