New Delhi, Jun 5 (PTI) Rugby India”s Development Manager Greg Davey feels the recent training-cum-competition trips to New Zealand and Fiji have helped iron out flaws in the team”s preparation for this year”s Commonwealth Games. “New Zealand and Fiji tours have given boys the confidence required at the international level.
They trust themselves more, they believe in their strengths. They have learned to take decisions quickly on the field and have rectified their mistakes,” Davey told PTI. “They were exposed to some great teams during the tour.
Now I would like to see the boys applying these skills in tournaments like Shanghai Sevens, Buenos Aires Sevens and the big Delhi Commonwealth Games,” he added. During their three-week trip, the 23-member Indian contingent met former champions and legends of the game, visited state-of-the-art gymnasiums, world class pitches and fitness professionals and competed in a few practice matches.
“The trip was very important keeping the Commonwealth Games in mind. Boys need to step up their performance and produce good results in front of home crowd.
What matters is attitude and aggression. They have the killer instinct in them and need to show that on the field against opponents,” said Davey.
On the Indians” performance in the just-concluded Asian5 Nations Rugby tournament where they finished runners-up after losing to lowly ranked Philippines 12-34 in the summit clash, Davey said it was disheartening to see the team lose after coming so close to the title triumph. “We had prepared hard for the tournament and that showed in our performance.
But we faltered at the last hurdle. Anyway the tournament has given us many positives and we hope to continue our good form” he said.
The New Zealander said inclusion of youngsters in the team was a positive step taken by the national federation and “it will pay rich dividends in the future.” “It”s a good step taken in right direction.
It”s good for the overall development of the team. But the young guns need to prove their talent to retain their place in the side,” he said.
In Davey”s native New Zealand, rugby is the most popular sport and he foresees the sport to become as popular in cricket-mad India as well. “I think in two-three years, we can have 50,000 players, a good scenario for India.
There is a need to build the strong foundation at the school and college level. I believe Rugby has what it takes to appeal to sport loving Indians,” he said.
Davey is aiming to put in place a proper coaching and administrative infrastructure to ensure all-round growth of the sport.