The Investec International Rugby Academy offers high paced action, unrivalled experience and world class coaching. Crammed with position-specific training, interactive sessions, tactical thinking and lessons on mental toughness, the unique two week high performance rugby course is set for the final whistle on Friday, December 16th. The desire to provide a handful of promising players and coaches more opportunities for improvement and advancement in a constantly evolving game serves as the backdrop for the highly-acclaimed Investec International Rugby Academy, headed by former Springbok assistant coach Dick Muir.
Within the space of two weeks, the Academy would have run three courses, namely, a High Performance Course, for players and coaches who want to break into professional rugby, as well as an Advanced Players Course which is the top school boy course catering for players aged 16 – 18. In addition to the young talent was a superb blend of the very best on offer in the rugby fraternity including the likes of Murray Mexted, Louis Koen, Braam van Straaten, Wayne Taylor, Grant Bashford, David Campese, John Allan, Mark Lawrence, James Small, Gary Gold, Greg Miller, Pieter De Villiers, Ashley Evert, Ian Macdonald and Jerome Paarwater.
Facilitator Dick Muir believes that the Academy capitalises on the demand for high-performance rugby tuition in an innovative and creative manor;
“The Academy is an invaluable experience for coaches and players because it provides crucial information and techniques on a host of topics that will go a long way in the development, progress and success of coaches and players alike. The 14 day period allows us to fully observe the skills, determination, flaws and talent of some of the most gifted youth available today. The players thoroughly enjoyed being part of such an exciting and informative experience with first class training facilities.”
Through a host of on and off field lectures, presentations and training drills the youngsters refined techniques, corrected their styles and developed their mental and physical fitness with the view to upgrading their talent to the next level. The coaches were also put through their paces as they learnt the latest trends in international rugby, engaged in healthy discussions and evaluated the performances and techniques of the best up-and-coming rugby players that South Africa has to offer.
Guy Ranger, a High Performance Course Graduate from May 2009 explains what the course meant to him;
“The International Investec Rugby Academy offers a premier opportunity for players and coaches to be evaluated and to learn what it takes to advance to the next level. With the selected coaches on hand the Academy provides the tools and skills needed for players and coaches to expand their horizons and perhaps one day entrench themselves in the rugby records. The South African academy is modelled on the success and credibility of the International Rugby Academy New Zealand and we firmly believe that in time, we would have nurtured and developed some of the greatest rugby talent to come out of this country.”