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Cricket of Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Source: By George Osei

Future of Ghana rugby looks good

Rugby as a developing sport in Ghana has chalked some remarkable successes over the last few years and it looks set to grow even feather with the coming into being of an organized league.

For the first time in the history of the sport in Ghana, a league was held this year for teams in the Greater Accra region with the Dansoman Hurricanes emerging winners after some tough battling duels.

The organization of the league has come a long way since the days of the discipline being played as a demonstration and leisure sport in Ghana with the teams made up of mostly foreign expatriates who imported the game.

Ghana has come a long way since then and the future can only look bright if true to their word, the Ghana Rugby Association (GRA) will carry out their laid down plan to make the sport as popular as football (soccer).

That includes an elaborate programme that would see the training of trainers and instructors who would be expected to impart the knowledge their have gained to their teams and especially at the grassroots level where talents could be spotted and developed into future stars.

Good coaching at any level in sport is crucial towards success and it is pleasing to here that the GRA is serious about this department of the game as it intends to organize a technical training programme for level one and two coaches as well as introductory courses for sports teachers and journalists nationwide.

Through this programme, participants would have been expected to gain a deep insight into rugby both in the technical aspect for coaches and reportage for journalists.

This initiative by the GRA, have led many to hold brief that the future outlook of the sport looks great as they have promised to do more in the coming year.

They closed the rugby season with a Rugby Sevens gala at the University of Ghana Ajax Park which saw the Cosmos Buffalos emerging winners to close their campaign on a high.

In summing up the rugby year, President of the GRA Gifty Annan-Myers said this year has been unique; for the first time we played a league which was by Dansoman Hurricanes and we also held this gala to bring everybody together.

True to her words, this year has been good as Ghana made waves in rugby circles home and abroad with the national team participating in a number of internationals events.

Next year will bring in more challenges for the GRA but Ms. Annan-Myers who is also an Executive Member of the Confederation of African Rugby (CAR) does not anticipate any such fears.

She hopes with the barking of their sponsors they would overcome any challenge to move on to a different chapter in their development plan.

Sponsorship she adds has also been very supportive this year and expects many more to flow in. Some have started making noise already so next year certainly is going to be better.

They expect to take the game a step better next year with the league expected to improve and more efforts being geared towards taking the sport to schools nationwide.

More clubs are being formed with the vast majority of them at juvenile and youth level which is a good signal for future prospects with a place at the Olympics in 2016 in mind.

It should not be long before Ghana starts to produce the big name rugby players like, Jonah Lomu, Mike Cat, Johnny Wilkinson, François Peinaar, Carlos Spencer and Colin Meads among others on the world stage and the credit must go to the GRA.

Writers Email: okotosports@yahoo.com

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