An Open Letter to the Committee and Parents of Javea Aguiles Rugby
I’m Mac, head coach of the Barbarians Rugby Club in Denia, very pleased to meet you all.
May I take a few minutes of your time to clarify some misunderstandings you may have about the Barbarians club and clarify our position for the 2021 -2022 season
With rugby already being officially classed as «minority» sport in Spain and following nearly two difficult «Covid» years which reduced participation in our sport, we knew we had to change the way we market rugby to younger people in the area.
Our first step was to rebrand and change our official name to the «Barbarians Marina Alta, which more or less covers the area from Calpe in the south, to Denia in the north and to Jalon in the west. We hoped this would help people understand we are not a «one» location rugby club.
As far as the Valencian Rugby Federation is concerned, for the new 21-22 season, we will enter all our teams in the leagues(from seniors down to S14’s) as the «Barbarians Marina Alta»
Just by way of explanation, we have 3 sections to the club, the seniors (over 18’s), the Academy (S12/S14/S16) and the «escuela» under 12’s
To compete in these leagues you need squads of at least 25 players.As you all know, there will always be injuries, holidays, absentees, schooling, and as you move up the age ladder, these things become more prevalent.
The main reason for this letter is to propose an idea where we pool our resources and squads , for both S14 and S16, and play under that one banner of the Barbarians Marina Alta, not Denia, not Javea, not Moraira or anywhere else for that matter, but the Marina Alta.
This would mean that all of our home games would be played at the rugby ground in Denia and having sensible squad numbers, and take advantage of a superb playing surface and facilities the ground has to offer.
As regards training, we train every Tuesday and Thursday but I would not expect everyone to train twice a week as I know we all have personal, family and school priorities which I totally understand.
However, if we could all train together at least once a week it would be very beneficial obviously.
I would also welcome an option of all players training every saturday morning alternatively in Javea and Denia. So all «non javea» based players would come to Javea one saturday, and vice versa to Denia the next. It’s just a great way for the kids to get to know one another.
The Barbarians have an experienced coaching set up. Apart from myself and John Cassidy(we are both qualified UK coaches), we have an English player, Matt Cook, who has played for Spain at 7’s and 15’s and is part of the seniors set up. We also have a couple of experienced Argentian coaches as well as Nacho Rouyet, who played for the Italian national team and is now part of the academy set up.
If we work together, I would very much like to see the Javea coaches such as Trevor, Carl and Dave join the Barbarian Academy coaching section for the coming season.Alongside myself and John, I am sure we would make a good team and help the kids develop their skills and understanding of the game of rugby.
I hope you see this as a positive opportunity. It’s about the kids enjoying rugby. One of my core philosophies is that if those kids come and sit on the bench as a squad player or reserve, then they must get on and play. The only way to build their confidence is to get them on that pitch irrespective of their skill level and that is what our aim should always be. Winning is important, its very important, but not at all costs.
Over the years we have had something like 10 players represent the Valencian Comunidad and at least 3 go on to represent Spain U16/U18’s at International level.
If we work together, there is no reason we can’t achieve this again and get some of your sons/daughters gaining these same representative honours for Valencia and Spain in the years to come.
We respect whatever decision you make.
On a final note, I actually live in Javea and happy to chat to any parents that need any questions answered. My number is 609646349 and you can call me anytime.