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Tour Diary – Captain’s Run And Coaching Kids

Tour Diary – Captain’s Run And Coaching Kids

Captain’s Run and a chance for the coaches to give a masterclass to the boys from Rondebosch Prep were the highlights of a busy day on the eve of the big Test match.

The Captain’s Run training session is at the later than normal time of 2pm so there is a whole morning to fill. Naturally that means breakfast, analysis, monitoring, stretching and unit meetings before we depart for Newlands Stadium.

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For many it is their first trip here, but Iain Henderson, Stuart Olding , Kieran Marmion and Tadhg Furlong all played here for the Ireland Under-20s back in 2012.

It’s a light run-out in the stadium – mainly a chance to get a feel for the place and take the edge of any nerves. The lads certainly enjoyed the training exercise Joe Schmidt had devised for them. It involved working in pairs and holding hands.

After training the players head back, but Joe, Andy Farrell, Simon Easterby and Richie Murphy along with team manager Mick Kearney move on to Rondebosch Prep to do a coaching clinic with some of the youngsters.

Joe certainly seemed to relish being back to his roots and Andy, Simon and Richie all took different groups for the training session.

It was a fantastic afternoon against the magnificent backdrop of Cape Town, organised by former Old Belvedere player Willie McDonald, who currently lives in Cape Town.

For the team the rest of the day is a mixture of preparation and relaxation. There are squad and unit meetings and in the evening a visit to the ‘boot room’ of kitman John Moran to collect socks, shorts and any last minute essentials.

Ireland captain Rory Best spoke today about embracing and enjoying the event and how he hopes to see the younger players take the opportunity that has come their way. The hard work is done. Tomorrow is match day!