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Girls National School Blitz A Huge Success in Monivea

Girls National School Blitz A Huge Success in Monivea

Monivea RFC hosted their first girl’s national primary school blitz on Thursday night last with 16 teams taking part. With over 120 pupils from 22 schools turning up for the occasion, games kicked off at 6.30pm under flood lights with the sound of joy and laughter echoing through the woods nearby.

This current initiative was rolled out in the New Year by Wendy Hickey, Connacht Women’s Development Officer, and is the latest drive to promote girls rugby in the Province.

Support from the Connacht Branch through its Play Rugby Programme meant that schools benefited from weekly coaching sessions to teach the basic skills to the girls and their teachers, and to encourage them to join their local club.

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Monivea RFC have been fortuitous that one of their own coaches, Darren Collins, was appointed by the Connacht Branch, to help implement this initiative in the local schools.

 He commented, “It has been a phenomenal success, exceeding all of the Clubs expectations. 

We have had girls from schools that are not part of this initiative come along to train in a school that is, just to be able to play rugby. 

They now come along with the 40 other girls training every Saturday morning which is testament to its success.  

At a time when exercise or the lack of it is the buzz word it is heartening to see so many girls participating.”

Wendy Hickey had this to say about the initiative “Mini Girls rugby continues to be a huge growing success here in Connacht with more clubs coming on board every month. I would hope that over the next 2-3 years, each club in Connacht would have their own girls’ only mini section.

A huge thank you must go out to Padraig McGann from Monivea RFC, who was the driving force behind this successful blitz. Padraig’s hands on approach is a testament to his commitment to this project. From coordinating the coaches with school visits and supporting the blitz on the evening to supplying healthy refreshments and snacks on the night to every child.”

Monivea RFC would like to extend their sincere thanks to Lyndon Jones, Charlie Couper and Wendy Hickey of the Connacht Branch for supporting and providing the resources to roll out the project in so many local schools and for their attendance at the blitz. Also to the parents, teachers and girls who all turned out to make this occasion so successful.  

Last but not least to coach Darren Collins for his commitment to this initiative, his mentoring skills and his encouragement to get the girls involved.

The schools that partook in this first blitz are as follows: Brackloon, Kiltullagh, Esker, Menlough, Crumlin, Newtown, Moylough, Brierfield, Coldwood, Castleblakeney, Cooloo, Lisheenkyle, Gaelscoil Riada NS, Carnaun, Ballymacward, Monivea, Annagh, Coolarne, Newcastle, Athenry Girls, Mountbellew and Attymon.