Kevin Sutherland ( BiG StoFF)
Orkney Rugby Football Club
Home Phone 01856 873104
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
The First Weekend 25th – 27th February, we travelled South with the U14s, and at the Highland Festival our boys won the large majority of their, between two teams they won 6 from 8 games, followed by a comprehensive win against Ross Sutherland U14s on their trip back up the road. Without doubt, watching such an exciting group of youngsters play such expansive, care free rugby was much more enjoyable than watching what can only be described as a lacklustre performance from the Scotland U20s and against their Ireland counterparts at Caley Stadium that same weekend.
As a Mini Rugby coach, it is particularly satisfying to see such a talented group of boys further developing their skills under the guidance of the U14s coaches, who include Club DO Bruce Ruthven, Jen Falconer, Graham Lincoln and John Rendall. The other things that became apparent to me that weekend were: a/ the respect the boys showed their coaches and b/ the enjoyment that the coaches got from seeing the boys listening, taking on board what was being said and going out and performing what they had been told and had been trained to do.
The following weekend 4th – 5th March, we travelled South with a slightly weakened U16s team to play Ellon in a re-scheduled Caley Cup tie. Despite a spirited performance which was typified by “dugged” Orkney resistance in defence, the Ellon team ran in a couple of late tries to win 27 – 15. Before the game the Orkney U16s coach, Adrian Askew, asked not only for a performance but also a performance with integrity, the boys who travelled to Ellon could not have shown their undoubted respect for their coach more by their attitude both off and on the pitch. Their behaviour throughout the trip was exemplary, including coming home on a rather bumpy trip from Aberdeen. Their manner to their fellow team-mates, opposition and particularly the referee, who without doubt missed some rather blatant infringements by both teams, the Orkney First XV could have learnt a lot on Saturday by watching these boys demeanour on the pitch!!! (Pot and Kettle, I ken!!!)
After the game, I had a chance to speak to one of the senior committee of Ellon RFC who praised, equally, both sides discipline and skills on the day. Whilst we were having our conversation the two teams turned up for their after match dinner, one team in T-shirts and jeans, the other smartly dressed in shirts, club ties, pressed trousers, etc and, as on occasion, a look says more than a thousand words, the Ellon committee member was without doubt impressed by the smart appearance of the Orkney U16s!!. (I also don’t think that the other boys would mind if I made special mention of Liam Moar, Craig Russell and Joey Fischler, who travelled South with the squad but due to the way the game panned out either got next to none or no match time whatsoever, and understood without questioning their coach. Without doubt boys, your turn will come.)
Well done boys, throughout both weekends you proved to be great ambassadors for Orkney RFC
So my message to the boys, both U14s and U16s, that I saw play during the last two weekends is, keep training, get a hold of the boys that are not training and give them a hard shake, you will all have important games to play for either the Club or your school in the next few weeks and months. The U14s Tour to Melrose, KGS U16s away fixure to Hawick in the Brewin Dolphin and ORFC U16s next round fixture in the Caley Bowl, which we drop in to now after defeat to Ellon, but to name a few. Also there will be more SRU Pathway sessions coming up in the near future and without doubt ORFC have potential to be making a big impact on the Highlander squads this year!
“SO that’s the Good News, What’s the Bad News?” I hear you all say?!?!!
The continued expansion of the Orkney RFC Junior sections, particularly in light of the Club Development Officer Project and the tireless work done by the Club DO Bruce Ruthven, is causing great strain on the coaching/ volunteer resources within the Club. We need more volunteers at all levels of the Club, performing a whole variety of roles, not just in coaching but it is the biggest priority.
So today, I am announcing the “YOUR Club needs YOU!!” initiative. I often hear folk out with the Club, eg at Home games etc, say “Well I wid have helped oot wae that if I’d been asked!” Well today I’m ASKING!!! There is no doubt that within former players, Club supporters, etc that we should be able to generate some more coaches, coaching time volunteers, group managers etc etc….. I’m not asking for folk to give up every weekend just throw their name into helping Adrian with U16s every second weekend, or helping with the Dounby Rookies on a Saturday Morning once a month, travelling away with a Midi team once a season or something?!!! Having said that if you feel that you’ve had a bit of a sabbatical from rugby, so to speak, and fancy taking up the reins at Age Group Rugby ORFC, and Bruce Ruthven in particular, will ensure that you have full Club resources available to you and there will never be the situation, until you feel comfortable, that you will be left “in at the deep end” so to speak!
To those out there that say, “Well I’m not interested in coaching etc, but I’d like to do something”, I can say whatever you can do and are prepared to do we’ll find some way of utilising you!! There’s always help needed doing up the Club house, website, fundraising etc etc. The Club have been offered the opportunity to utilise “The Blue Door” in Victoria Street from Monday 12th to Saturday 17th September to raise funds for the Junior sections of the Club, can you do a shift??? These are just ideas but if you want to offer your services in any way please let myself, Rodney, Ian Gibson or Bruce Ruthven know! It is also hoped that pre-season we can hold an Open Information Night at the Clubhouse where interested parties, players, parents, sponsors, potential volunteers can come along and find out what is planned for the season ahead and how we envisage folk can help out (More details on this night will be forthcoming nearer the time).
So summarising, the future of Orkney Rugby Football Club is now in YOUR hands, (I’ve now passed the buck so to speak!!). The current Club Structure is unsustainable. YOUR Orkney Rugby Club Committee needs YOUR help now. The Committee are committed to continuing the work required to further progress the Club going forward; we are currently looking for a Rugby Community Coach SVQ to compliment the work Bruce is doing at the Primary Schools during the week, the potential redevelopment of the existing Clubhouse or possible construction of a new Club house are now progressing well with the help of Andy McGinn, hopefully further information will become available in time for the ORFC AGM on Sunday 24th April; For these and any further projects on the horizon to make any progress we now need YOUR help!! In the words of Club Chairman Rodney Spence “Many hands mak fur light wark, ya ken!”