5 Jul 2018

Seven European coaches have spent six days in Leeds under the tutelage of RLEF coach manager Martin Crick, getting up to date on the latest techniques and practices in the sport, as part of the RLEF Training and Educational portal project.

Mike Aughey (Ireland), Bob Doughton (Germany), Dave Hunter (Norway), Tiziano Franchini and Kelly Rolleston (Italy), Michalis Chatzioannou (Greece) and David Lahr (Czech Republic) were hosted by Leeds Rhinos and witnessed a variety of games to supplement their practical and field exercises.

Amongst their activities, the group were witness to Rhinos’ scholarship and academy training, given seminars on tactical analysis by assistant coaches Barry Eaton and Chev Walker, had a Q and A with top Super League player Jamie Jones-Buchanan, were given evaluation and assessment tasks at the Leeds Rhinos Women’s cup tie with the British Army, were guests at a Super League game at Wigan, received briefings from former Great Britain international Paul Broadbent and on the latest strength and conditioning developments from Jason Davidson, and visited junior community matches to see how modified rules are implemented.

Rugby League Norge’s Dave Hunter said: “The six days spent in Leeds were a fantastic experience. The Rhinos staff were very welcoming and keen to share their experiences and thoughts on coaching. I’m sure all those involved will head back to their respective countries much better informed and motivated because of their time in here.”

“It was a very productive week, I learned a lot about all levels of the sport,” added Aughey. “We also got invaluable insights into the coaching and development of players through the professional pathway. It was also good to meet colleagues from the other European nations, share experiences and work with them towards our common goals.”

Bob Doughton of Nationaler Rugby League Deutschland noted: “It has been a privilege to be involved in this project. The openness and generosity of the personnel at Leeds Rhinos and within their foundation, and indeed the people of Leeds, has been overwhelming.”

The TEP is a three-year, €723.000 investment into capacity building through good governance and technical training, funded by €466.000 from the EU’s Erasmus+ project and the remainder from the RLIF and five of its full members. It is intended to build the knowledge and skills of the RLEF’s 21 European members, divided into six regional clusters, through high quality training and mentoring, while granting opportunities to share experiences amongst fellow Europeans dedicated to rugby league development.