Premiership coaches journey to Brazil
September 3, 2012
Premiership Rugby has sent 12 coaches to Brazil to raise the profile of the sport in the country that will host the 2016 Olympics.
Sevens will take its bow in Rio de Janeiro in four years time and Premiership Rugby has already lit the blue touch paper ahead of the event with the team of coaches journeying to the country for a year. The community coaches will work in partnership with the British Council and SESI in Brazil and project manager Scott Watson hopes that the project will create a "sustainable legacy".
"The coaches will be embedded into twelve secondary schools and will look to also integrate local community groups and use those sorts of bases to give those who may not have had had the chance to take in the game in the past, the platform to be able to enjoy it going forward," Watson told ESPN. "It's a fantastic opportunity for us going into what is a football-mad country as we have almost a blank canvas."
With the impact of the London 2012 Olympics still being felt around the country, the build-up is also starting in Brazil ahead of their own Games. And Sevens will be a key part of the legacy they aim to leave. Watson said: "Sevens will be a big focus as it's a lot easier from a developmental point of view because of the easier logistics behind the sport.
"With Sevens being integrated into the Olympics then the popularity will move up to a different level."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Huw Richards profiles French forward Walter Spanghero, a man who even rugby's hard men thought was a tough nut
"To be part of the Commonwealth Games, I'd wear anything. I'd wear a clown suit." Tom Hamilton talks to Scotland's Sean Lamont
Scrum Sevens looks back at how rugby has fared in both the early Olympics and the past four Commonwealth Games
"Cheika's been phenomenal. He gives you an incredible level of mental strength." Tom Hamilton talks to Waratahs star Jacques Potgieter