Saturday, August 15, 2009

Rugby in the Olympics? That changes everything....

So the IOC looks set to include rugby sevens in the Olympics from 2016 This should be wonderful news for the development of rugby in Korea. The Koreans have always punched above their weight in sevens and with 7 years to prepare, have the time to turn around sluggish performances in recent HK sevens tournaments by putting in place the infrastructure to attract and then develop the players they need. Let's hope they don't drop the ball because despite 7 years sounding a lot of time, it means that Korea's 2016 Olympic rugby contenders are already teenagers.

The KRU would do well to look overseas for talent, and that could still be Korean nationals, since so many Korean kids are studying in rugby hotbeds like NZ, Australia and the UK....not to mention Canada and even South Africa. These youngsters will be well drilled and could raise the tide for all of Korean rugby if the system were more open here and allowed them to repatriate their skills.

With the 2019 RWC to be held in Japan too, it now gives Korean rugby something to go at....a target that could well galvanise the disparate factions and get everyone pulling (or perhaps pushing) in the same direction!

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