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Hong Kong Schools and Grassroots Coaching

Coaches: John McKittrick (North Harbour), Stuart Mather (Auckland University), Dean Herewini (Royal Selengor Club) & Craig Brown (Penguins)

The Club visited Hong Kong twice in 2007, once for the Hong Kong 10s and then to facilitate an intensive week of coaching activities in late July and early August 2007.

During the week of the Hong Kong 10s the playing team planned and executed a session for local school children. This was held at the Hong Kong Football Club, and catered for 60 young people. The players divided the young people into three groups, and ran a number of fun and skill drills for approximately 45 minutes. The last 20 minutes involved two mini games for the young people, with the players joining in as appropriate. After the warm down, the players presented each participant with an Academy T-Shirt and a Penguin badge.

During the week of 10s and 7s tournaments, the HKRU and Penguin Club engaged in discussion focusing on the Penguin’s participation in the development of rugby in the region. The possibility of a Penguin coaching team was considered and a plan duly finalised. Four experienced coaches visited Hong Kong in August for 9 days.

During the last week of August, four coaches, John McKittrick, Stu Mather, Dean Herewini and Craig Brown travelled to Hong Kong for a number of coaching activities in association with the Hong Kong Rugby Union.

Ivan Torphy, Head of Performance at the HKRU, produced a full program for the four Penguin coaches covering the following activities and areas:

  • IRB level 2 course – Academy coaches acting as coach educators;
  • various senior club training sessions including Valley, HKFC, Aberdeen, DeA, Kowloon, and Causeway Bay;
  • the Break Through project, coaching young adults who have been in trouble with the law;
  • Flying Kukris children’s club;
  • women’s front row clinic;
  • Youth front row clinic;
  • Chinese youth teams;
  • PLA in Guangzhou;
  • coaching of teachers;
  • developing coaches tutorial,
  • schools coaching.

The week was very busy, yet very rewarding with a lot of ground covered. The trip also included two nights in Guangzhou where 6 hours were spent with the PLA team as part of their build up to their New Zealand tour.

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