Posts Tagged ‘amateur rugby’

North Herts Crusaders Rugby League Club Go From Strength To Strength

Spen Allison Presents Man Of Steel shield To Kyle Hughes

Spen Allison Presents Man Of Steel shield To Kyle Hughes of the North herts Crusaders

I am sorry for the lack of posts however i have been busy helping build a sustainable rugby league team in the south of England. Its been a great buzz and have really enjoyed getting the word out and trying to convert players to a game that i have grown to love. This last week we had our second ever awards evening and had the pleasure of the company of Spen Allison and Ikram Butt legends in the rugby league world, a world we are learning about and are loving it.

The much anticipated end of season Dinner and presentation evening was a sell out with over 72 guests that included players, partners, parents, sponsors and friends that have all contributed to the success story of the Crusaders. The venue was The Orange Tree In Baldock, who are also a club sponsor and along with Greene King kindly sponsored the food for the evening which was delicious.We had great honour of having as our guests for the evening Ikram Butt and Spen Allison. Ikram is and ex professional rugby league player having played at representative level for England, and at club level for Featherstone Rovers, Leeds Rhinos, Huddersfield Giants, and London Broncos, as a Wing. Ikram Butt was the first south Asian to play either code of international rugby for England in 1995.

Spen Allison as the second of our special guests. Spen Allison is a living legend within rugby league circles having been the long serving Chairman of the British Amateur Rugby League Association (BARLA) and now still involved as the Senior Vice Chairman of BARLA. Spen has been on the BARLA management committee since 1958 which is just over 55 voluntary management years to British Amateur Rugby League a great achievement and a great commitment to the greatest game.

The Crusaders had a lot to celebrate this year with the open age team going the league season unbeaten and winning both the East Cup and East Grand finals and making it to the quarter finals of the National Harry Jepson Cup. In the national cup we suffered our first defeat of the season at the hands of the eventual winners of the Harry Jepson Cup South London Chargers.

It was not all about the open age section as this year was the inaugural season for the newly formed under 16s team which shocked the Eastern Rhinos team in their first ever game and indeed when on to win all but one game this season. In addition to this we also had 7 under 16s players gaining representational honours playing in the London Origins where the best of north and south of the river Thames battle it out in a three game series.

Ikram Butt Presents Awards To Under 16s Players Player Of The Year

Ikram Butt Presents Awards To Under 16s Players Player Of The Year

First up for the rewards was the under 16s our special guest Ikram Butt was to give out the awards.

The Under 16s winners

Players Player Of The Year: Simon Taylor

Coaches Player of the year: Ruiri Shanahan

Top Gun Award: Charlie Parkhouse

Graduation Awards

Graduation awards are given to those players that break through from junior rugby to the open age team and we had 2 players that stepped up and performed admirabley in possibly our toughest game in the quarter final of the Harry Jepson Cup the two graduates this year were:

Charlie Parkhouse

Lewis Copsey


Open Age Winners

Players Player Of The Year: Evan Griffiths

Coaches Player of the year: Alex Nolan

Man Of Steel: Kyle Hughes

It was a tough decision to pick just three winners from each age group as there were many worthy winners. A huge well done and thanks for a great season.

We also like to reward volunteers that go the extra mile to help the club function and thus a special award which recognised the hard work and commitment throughout the season.

Crusader Of The Year: Anne Peterson

This wraps up the second season for the Crusaders which has seen great growth and ultimately success on and off the pitch. Thank you everyone that contributed in whatever way no matter how small as its with the involvement of great people that we can grow and continue to thrive as a club in North Hertfordshire.


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - October 4, 2013 at 11:27

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby clubs, Rugby League, World Rugby   Tags: , , , ,

Rugby Laws The Basics

The basics of rugby

Whilst living in Germany and starting this very website a number of Germans I spoke to did not understand rugby at all. They suggested that I should write a post explaining the the basics of rugby. So for those people out there that can’t really get into watching a game of rugby because you don’t know what is happening here is a brief introduction to the game of Rugby Union.

Whilst this video is a nice introduction there is much more to learn, however the next time you are watching a game hopefully your understanding will be a little better.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - May 26, 2010 at 14:53

Categories: Rugby Union Laws   Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

How To Get The Winning Mentality and Visualize Your Goals

It is my belief that talent is overrated when evaluating what is required to be successful in any sport. Every sports club up and down the country have naturally talented players that are not fulfilling their potential. On the Other hand you will see less naturally talented players achieving much greater success. The reason for this is, mindset. If you get your mindset right then you can achieve anything you want.

The winning Mentality

Sebastien Chabal

You Can If You Think You Can!

If you think you are beaten, you are,
If you think you dare not, you don’t.
If you like to win, but you think you can’t,
If you think you’ll lose, you’re lost,
For out in the world we find,
Success begins with a fellow’s will.
It’s all in the state of mind.
If you think you are outclassed, you are,
You’ve got to think high to rise,
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.
Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man.
But soon or late the man who wins,
Is the man who thinks he can.
~ C. W. Longenecker ~




To be successful you have to believe in yourself, have goals and be capable of visualizing and feeling success in your mind. If you learn to control of your mind and thoughts there is nothing that you cannot achieve.

The winning mentality

Success in any sport or indeed in any sphere of life requires one to have a positive mental attitude and for you to take full responsibility for your life. If you are one of those people that blame people or other external factors for your lack of success then this could be what is stopping you “making it”. Not taking responsibility for your own destiny and blaming others for your lack of success for example “the coach does not like me” or “they only pick their friends”, can be a very damaging way to go through life.

In the above situation players can give up playing completely or they may even leave your club and look for another club where they believe they will have a more favourable environment for them to succeed. However the problem is often not with the club at all. The problem is often with the player and his or her mindset. People with this type of thinking will not make it in any area of there life unless they change their mindset, this change is very possible if you want it to be.  Please read on and maybe this will help you reach your goals or maybe give you that edge you are looking for.

Successful people with a winning mentality in any field are active and always looking for ways to improve themselves. They see failure and rejection as temporary obstacles that must be overcome, not as career ending events. When confronted by a challenge, winners immediately start to devise plans for overcoming them. People with a losing mentality will often stop in their tracks and look for someone or something to blame, they will often try to justify their attitude with various excuses, it is always someone else’s fault and not their own. In reality you can achieve anything you want in any given game if you want it bad enough. I honestly believe this to be true and it only takes a slight change in the way you think. By seeing problems or obstacles as challenges that must be overcome will give you the impetus to try harder and work harder to overcome these minor setbacks.


Visualize your goals

Have confidence in your ability

Visualize success

A powerful tool that can be used to improve your game is visualization. Before a big game or training vizualise (intend) what outcome you want and step into how it feels.

If your game is rugby then visualize yourself scoring a try or making those big hits and most of all visualize yourself playing the best game you could ever play or  remember a time when you had your best game ever and try and remember how that felt. While visualizing these scenarios, you should try to imagine the detail and the way it feels to perform in the desired way and how you felt afterwards.


How Vizualisation Can Help You

Mentally Prepared
Being in the right state of mind at game time is crucial. The ability to focus and block out everything going on in the world outside of your game can mean the difference a mediocre performance and a great performance.

Improve Skills

Spending time visualizing yourself learning a new skill, or improving current ones can help you to perfect your skills.
Review Your Game

Reviewing how you play in your position and how you would like to improve can help you perform better.

Rehearsal strategy

Mentally going over possible situations that may come up and imagining your strategies can help you be more relaxed and confident doing your game.

Get a winning attitude

After being dropped from your team or losing a few games, you often lose some your hard earned confidence. This can have a negative effect on your game. Using visualization to “see” yourself as a playing in the next game or as the winner can break through a negative attitude.

A video containing some great tips on using visualization.



Positive thinking and talking about yourself

Positive self-talk during competition is crucial for optimun performance. Talking negatively about yourself and doubting your skills will set you back both emotionally and techinically. Focus on what you are in control of right now.

Do not compare yourself to others. Try and focus on what are your strengths and play to these strengths. Do not worry about making mistakes as everyone at every level of the game can make the occasional mistake, never let it make you lose sight of your goals and objectives during training or in a game. Nervousness and anxiety is a natural response and if used correctly can be used to your advantage. Never let anxiety or nervousness get the better of you.


Never look for excuses

Trying to justify your mistakes is always a bad idea. When you make a mistake in a game or training just let it go and concentrate on your game. Try not try to blame teammates or external factors that you are not in control of, especially during a match. When you are a part of the team, you must share both responsibility and rewards. If you have to point out a mistake to a teammate, try and be constructive and keep it positive. Even more importantly please remember to give positive feedback whenever you can.

These days players not only have to be physically trained to win, they must be mentally trained also. A positive mental attitude and the ability to use Visualization can give you that extra edge coupled with a positive attitude and belief could make you irresitable.

3 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - May 11, 2010 at 15:23

Categories: Sports Psychology   Tags: , , , , , ,

How a Rugby Club Should be Run?

I came across the following video whilst browsing youtube. It seems to be a promotional video for Havant Rugby Football Club who play in National League 3 South East which is the fifth tier of English rugby. It outlines some of its aims and ambitions for the future. I think that it gives a glimpse of a well run and ambitious rugby club. It shows what exactly a rugby club can offer its players of all age ranges from seven upwards, social members, sponsors and indeed the local community. Though this video is about a particular club, it’s no different to any other club. It shows what I believe to be how all rugby clubs should be run, with all the elements present to make a successful club on and off the pitch. So check it out.

An important issue that is raised in this video is that of paying players. I am not singling out Havant for this discussion, because most teams in the Havant’s league at level 5 will have a mix of paid players and local players and indeed I am sure some will pay all players, it is a sign of the times. I don’t think this is an issue at level 5 and above but in the leagues below it seems some clubs can be reluctant to admit it after all this is where it becomes a amateur game isn’t it?

Some clubs often get promoted with a good batch of players coming up through their youth systems combining with the experienced players in the club. Eventually this team will get as far as it can go with this set of players. Some clubs can even make it into the National leagues. What happens if some players go off to university or simply retire when you can see the club going through free fall through the leagues? I suggest at this point you decide what type of club you want to be as this is a big step for a non paying club as it maybe going against traditions, that’s if money is available or you can find ways of raising more funds though sponsorship deals and such like.

Some clubs will not see the opportunities available to raise more funds to bolster the squads and some clubs will decide that it’s against their principles. Some clubs will look to bolster their squad in a bid to stop a steady decline back down the leagues, this move will probably change the club forever.

If you have a team made up solely of paid players that come to training and game on a Saturday then straight after the game they shoot off to “a dinner party” then this can be detrimental on the rest of the club. Those players that are playing in the lower teams may not get to know any of the first team socially, this can then create cliques in your club with members of these other teams becoming resentful. If you get just a couple of paid players in then this could cause resentment “if they are being paid, why aren’t we?” So what is the answer? Insist these guys stick around after the game for at least a couple of drinks, it helps.

Decide what type of club you want to be. If you want to watch/play a good standard of rugby at level 5 and above, and maintain it, then paid players will be present at some stage in your club. It is important that you take a balanced approach and not let other sections of your club suffer such as the players in the lower teams and youth and mini sections as this is the lifeblood of any successful club.

2 comments - What do you think?  Posted by admin - March 8, 2010 at 13:39

Categories: English Rugby, Rugby clubs   Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

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