With the second month of the year already upon us, rugby clubs across the peninsula are past the fitness training stage.
Clubs are into contact sessions and on the verge of cropping their training groups to squad size.
At False Bay RFC, the women’s team under Zoe Naudé and assistant coach Ryan Henry, have been hard at work preparing for their upcoming season.
Runners-up in last year’s inaugural Women’s Rugby league, practices have been attended by no less than 40 players a season, with a fair sprinkling of new faces among the many players of 2022.
Although the fixtures for the 2023 season are yet to be announced, Naude is preparing her teams for the friendly match programme, which starts at the end of February.
Appetites were whet somewhat when the Bay women participated at the Cape Town Tens tournament held in Sea Point over the weekend.
The success of coaches Naudé and Henry’s efforts can be measured in part by the fact that 12 Bay Women were invited to Western Province fitness testing. “The majority of these players have been attending WP training at their High Performance Centre in Bellville”, says Naudé.
On the men’s side of the Bay set-up, head coach Gunner Hughes and his panel of coaches have been hard at work preparing the players for their season, which features three friendly matches, including Durbell, Helderberg and Brackenfell.
Hughes is all too aware of the challenges ahead as he inherits a seasoned squad of successful campaigners threatened by retirements and enticements from other clubs in the Super League A.