Online registration opened last Saturday and within a week, more than 25 000 players, coaches, team managers and other volunteers have already completed the World Rugby Covid-19 awareness course and WRU registration process to allow them to train with a Welsh club or Female Hub within the current regulations. That is around half of last year’s total number of registered players, coaches and volunteers. There is no contact rugby at any level as yet but under 7s to under 11s can include tag and touch rugby in their sessions. See below for full Return to Rugby info.
Geraint John believes the readiness to return to the game after a four and a half month enforced break from the field is down to the hard work of volunteers, coaches, WRU staff and players to educate themselves and put robust safety measures in place at clubs in order to resume training safely.
He said, “It is uplifting to see players, especially youngsters, out enjoying being part of their rugby team again. We’ve all missed the game itself, and its physical, mental and social benefits we all cherish. It’s important for us to adhere to government guidelines to help keep Wales safe, and with player welfare key, we’re also taking a safety-first approach to the re-introduction of contact rugby at all levels.
“We are truly thankful for the commitment shown by all involved in the game to go through the education and safety processes we’ve put in place to support the community game and heartened by the pure desire we’re seeing to get back out on the pitch and throw a ball around with team mates.”
Faye Davies is secretary and Club Operations Manager of New Dock Stars in Llanelli.
She said, “Our under 16s were first to return to training and having missed so much of their schooling and their friends over the last few months, it’s so good to see them outside training with their teammates again.
“Their coaches – Meirion and Andrew Thomas – along with our other coaches – have put in a lot of hard work to ensure everyone is properly educated and registered. They have also completed the additional first aid education and have prepared their coaching sessions with social distancing in mind, but it was all worth it to see the joy on the youngsters’ faces.
“We are grateful for the support the WRU has provided as the safety and education processes reassured any parents who were previously anxious about returning to training. Every under 16 player completed the registration process between Saturday and Tuesday’s training session and our other age groups will return next week followed by our youth and senior teams.”
St Albans in Cardiff also have a full complement of registered players thrilled to be back at training.
Under 13 coach Lauren Holloway said, “We are providing support to parents and players if required to help them complete the registration process and pre-training symptom checker but every one of my team are now back in training and it’s the same story for almost every player in the mini and junior section.”
Go to www.community.wales/returntorugby for all Return to Rugby protocols and go to www.wrugamelocker.wales to complete the registration process for players, coaches and other volunteers. This also applies to any newcomers to the game.