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Rugby stars support community coach development



Dan Biggar: during filming for one of the coaching resource videos

Dan Biggar: during filming for one of the coaching resource videos

THE WELSH RUGBY UNION has enlisted some of the biggest names in the game to launch the next phase of its Continuous Professional Development (CPD) programme for community coaches at all levels.

Stars from each of the four regions, alongside WRU Coach Development Officers, are running practical tutorials throughout Wales on coaching key rugby techniques including passing, catching and gripping, and safe scrummage.

The likes of Aaron Shingler and Rhodri Williams (Scarlets), Josh Navidi and Rhys Patchell (Blues) and ex-players Peter Rogers (Dragons) and Duncan Jones (Ospreys) are just some of rugby stars involved in the initiative.

The hands-on sessions for coaches are also supported by online video tutorials from national squad players including Dan Biggar and Sam Warburton and recent internationals Chris Horsman, Robert Sidoli and Mathew Rees, with contributions to come from Gareth Anscombe, Rhys Webb and Rhodri Jones – where the players talk through training techniques and example drills.

The courses are free of charge and available to anyone coaching in the game in Wales. They are part of the WRU ‘Let Us Play’ initiative aimed at safeguarding rugby values in Wales and ensuring best practise coaching techniques are shared across the WRU from the National Squad to the grass roots community game.

Wales Head Coach Warren Gatland said: “CPD courses are our way of sharing the latest coaching techniques across all levels and formats of the game. The sessions have been thoughtfully developed to show coaches how to encourage excellence, promote safety and bring fun to training sessions. They are good for player development but, equally as important, they are a great way for coaches to develop their own skills.”

WRU’s National Coach Development Manager Gerry Roberts said: “In addition to providing a fun, relaxed learning environment CPD events are a forum for coaches to communicate freely on matters that arise in week-to-week rugby delivery and to get feedback from Coach Development Officers, elite players and peers.

“The support of key players from across the regions and from the national squad reflects just how important community coach development is to maintaining the high standard of rugby we enjoy at all levels of the game in Wales.”

The new round of courses builds on the successful launch of the CPD programme in September. Since then over 3,000 Welsh community coaches and 3,000 players have benefited from a WRU CPD sessions.

CPD sessions cater for coaches of all levels of experience and for all levels of delivery from children up to the adult game. To find out when sessions will run in your region and to book a place visit

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Gascoigne entertains Llanelli



OVER 400 people were at attendance in the Selwyn Samuel Centre in Llanelli on Saturday (Jun 18) to see former England legend Paul Gascoigne talk about his life and footballing career.

Gazza had the crowd in stitches with his stories from his past and was visibly emotional with the crowd’s warm reaction to him being there.

At one point a member of the crowd asked him if he could play one last game for one team who would it be… his answer was Swansea City to the crowds delight.

His next event will be in Tenby on September 17. The event was kindly sponsored by RDH Contractors and Sylan Lakes holiday cottages in five roads.

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Ryan Giggs quits as Wales manager with ‘immediate effect’



EX Man-Utd winger has left his position as the manager of the national football team with ‘immediate effect’.

Giggs stepped back from his role in November 2020 following after being arrested.

49-year-old Giggs has been charged with assault and using controlling behaviour towards an ex-partner. A claim that Giggs has denied.

In a heartfelt statement on his decision, Giggs said: “After much consideration, I am standing down from my position as manager of the Wales men’s national team with immediate effect.

“It has been an honour and a privilege to manage my country, but it is only right that the Wales FA, the coaching staff and the players prepare for the tournament with certainty, clarification and without speculation around the position of their head coach.

“I do not want the country’s preparations for the World Cup to be affected, destabilised or jeopardised in any way by the continued interest around this case.

“I am sad that we cannot continue this journey together because I believe that this extraordinary group will make the country proud at our first World Cup since 1958.

“It is my intention to resume my managerial career at a later date.”

Following Giggs arrest in 2020, former Wales captain Robert Page took over as interim manager.

Under Page Wales beat Ukraine to earn themselves a place at Qatar World Cup for the first time in 64 years.

Giggs faces one charge of using controlling and coercive behaviour August 2017 and November 2020, one charge of assault causing actual bodily harm of his ex-girlfriend Kate Greville on November 1, 2020.

He also faces a charge of common assault on the victim’s sister.

Giggs denies all charges against him and will stand trial on August 8.

The trial is expected to last five days.

Following the announcement, a FAW spokesperson said: “The FAW places on record its gratitude to Ryan Giggs for his tenure as manager of the Cymru men’s national team and appreciates the decision he has taken, which is in the best interests of Welsh football,

“The full focus of the FAW and the Cymru men’s national team is on the Fifa World Cup in Qatar later this year.”

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Llanelli edged out as Ynystawe pull off mammoth chase



A SCORE of 331-4 would normally be enough for a team to pick up victory, but South Wales Premier Division 2 leaders Ynystawe had other ideas as they pulled off a remarkable chase on Saturday (Jun 4).

Llanelli had been asked to bat first after Ynystawe had won the toss and their total was underpinned by a brilliant unbeaten century from Iwan Rees.

The opener hit sixteen fours and four sixes in his knock of 153 which came off 146 balls.

He had good support from Steven Devonald who scored 29 and Rhydian Morgan who scored 20 (2 fours, 1 six).

Rees and Rhys Harris shared the best stand of the match as they put on 157 runs for the fourth wicket.

Harris hit 12 fours in his score of 87 from 74 balls but he was out to the bowling of Rhys Palmer.

Rhys Westcott also finished unbeaten on 18 from 11 balls as Ynystawe were set 332 to win the game.

In reply, opener Nathan Lee scored 20 before falling to Jac Rees who also then took the wicket of Morgan Hodges on a score of 23.

Carl Roberts played well for his half century, hitting eight fours in his score of 56 before being trapped leg before by Aled Gilley.

Andrew Beasley was run out on a score of 15 and that left Ynystawe on 140-4.

Thomas Morgan and Luke Garthwaite shared 93 runs for the fifth wicket. Both reached their half centuries but Morgan was out to Iwan Rees on a score of 50.

Rees also bowled Ceri Durke and Rhys Palmer was run out by Rhydian Morgan having hit a four and a six in a quickfire score of 15.

That left Ynystawe 275-7 and they only had six overs left to get their target.

Garthwaite was on a score of 75 when Palmer fell and he took control as he smashed his way to a century.

He finished unbeaten on 118 from 67 balls after hitting 20 fours and two sixes. The last of his fours won the game for the home side as they ended up winning with two overs to spare.

On Saturday, June 11, Llanelli host Cowbridge while Ynynstawe travel to Penarth.

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