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The Goa Rugby unveiled the official Men’s and Women’s team and jersery for the 10TH All India National Touch Rugby Championships 2016 held at Chattisgarh.

PANJIM: The Goa Rugby unveiled the official Men’s and Women’s team and jersery for the 10TH All India National Touch Rugby Championships 2016 at a glittering ceremony held in a city hotel at Panjim on Thursday.

All India National Touch Rugby Championships will be held from December 27th , 28th and 29th at Raipur, Chattisgarh.
The event is organised by Federation of International Touch, Touch Rugby Federation of India and Chattisgarh Touch.
The Goa squad  on their debut  will have an opportunity of being selected for the Indian Team for the Youth World Cup 2018 to be held in Malaysia and World Cup 2019 to be held in Malaysia.
For Anish Quenim, President of Goa Rugby & Goa Touch, the main objective was to create a new breed of young ruggers; to promote a rugby culture and to give rugby its due as a sport to Goa. The first step was to get the youngsters familiar with the rules of the game through the Touch Rugby’ format the kind where touch or tug at the shirt replaces a full-blooded tackle, thus exercising focus on the technical aspect of the game.
“The Touch Rugby talent that Goa has is awesome. But we have not been able to put a label to that talent. But now we look forward to doing that at Raipur, by giving in our best and hopefully emerge winners,” said Anish.
The sport was introduced in Goa just 3 years ago and now has over 5000 players of all ages, boys, girls and youth in over 100 schools, communities and clubs throughout the State.
“ A team of 15 Men and 15 Women will be heading for the nationals. We have support staff of two managers, one for each team. We also have two coaches accompanying the Men’s and Women’s team. The total Goa Touch Rugby squad will be of 34,” informed Anish.
Belinda Trotter who is an Ex Wales International player and Manager of the Wales international team is the coach for women’s rugby in Goa. David Trotter and Belinda Trotter are two coaches who have been helping in developing the sport in Goa.
David Trotter who has been a rugby player for the past 30 years heads the coaching and other activities related to Men’s development and Belinda an international rugby player with 26 caps heads the Women’s coaching activities in the State.
 “Goa has an excellent chance to secure a Trophy in this Tournament, and also the Indian National Coaches will be selecting Youth players to join Team India in preparation for the Youth Touch World Cup in 2018. This is a perfect chance to put Team Goa players firmly on the Touch Rugby World Map,” said Anish.
The grand ceremony began with the welcome address by President of Goa Rugby, Anish Quenim followed by Kaniel Dsouza, Vice President who highlighted their notable moments in their journey with Goa Rugby.  The Goa Rugby also launched the official website GoaRugby.com.
“Playing sport doesn’t just build character, it reveals it. At Project Goa Amche we believe that the children of today are not just our future, but the bridge to correct the past and better the present. Sport doesn’t require a script, nor a dialect, it is the most silent form of communication, but yet the loudest,” said Anish in his launch message on the GoaRugby website.
The owners of the 4 Club franchises,   Mr Duarteson Noronha, Crazy Pirates (North Goa), Mr Brandan Crasto, CrocoTRYles (South Goa), Mr Aaron D’mello, Saints (East Goa) and Mr Tej Shirodkar, TRYmates (West Goa) thanked the parents and club officials for the unconditional support.
CrocoTRYles has 11 players representing Team Goa followed by Crazy Pirates with 10 players, TRYmates 8 and Saints has 2 players in the national squad.
The Goa Women’s Touch Rugby squad come from diverse backgrounds, but they stand united in their love for the game and the desire to rise above sexist stereotyping.
For the sportspersons in Goa, the rugby ball has meant little more than an odd-shaped, oblong piece of leather, while the sport itself has been perceived as dangerous. But these Goa Touch Rugby brave hearts proved their critics wrong.
Chrisha Lobo, captain of the Goa Women’s Touch Rugby squad was optimistic about the team measuring up to the challenge ahead. Chrisha, student of St Xaviers Collge, Mapusa is studying B.Com in the second year. But she managed to balance her studies and touch rugby training.
“I travel from Calangute to Miramar to train. I do not see why more girls should not actively participate in Touch Rugby. The sport is perceived wrongly, it’s not contact. But in touch rugby we girls are advised to keep our hands outstretched while taking a touch,” informed Chrisha.
While some girls found an outlet to their brimming talent in a sport that is a test of mind as well as matter, others gave vent to their rage, as they get the freedom to knock down an enemy and stop at nothing but a try. Some others savour the long-due justice of matching shoulders with boys and competing on a level-playing field with them.
Just like other sports, in rugby too a lot depended on support coming from various quarters like the government, sponsors and most importantly parents.
Andrea Crizzle, mother of Claudia was visibly pleased with her daughters achievement in Touch Rugby.
“ We are happy for her. She will be representing Goa, which is a top honour. It’s a mixed feelings as she is leaving for Raipur, Chattisgarh on Christmas eve,” said Andrea.
Players will be travelling by train from Goa to Raipur on Christmas morning and will arrive back on New Year’s Eve. A sport that is so popular in England and Europe is now finding acceptance in Goa as well.
Claudia has her mother’s blessing and best wishes. Andrea was active in sports during her academics and hence understands what commitment and being a team player means in any sport discipline.
Sheetal Gaude, Sheevani ‘s mother, was a former national Kho-Kho team player and she too encouraged her daughter to take to Touch Rugby which is relatively a new sport in Goa and India.
The unveiling of the Goa Team, (Men’s & Women’s team) was done at the hands of their families and Captains Ms Chrisha Lobo and Mr Nauman Shaikh. The parents from various backgrounds were beaming with pride as they displayed the Team jersey along side their child.
The next big step for Goa Rugby is to lift the All India National Touch Rugby Championships trophy to fulfil many dreams, and fuel the future ambitions of young players.
Goa Rugby is an Association backed by Sports Authority of Goa, Goa Olympics Association, Directorate of Sports and Youth Affairs, Touch Rugby Federation of India, Federation of International Touch, Bishop Gore Rugby and Middle East Touch.

The GoaAmche Project by Goa Rugby & Goa Touch is powered by hospitality partners BanquetSPORTS, merchandise partners QRAB, Education partners Goa Psychology Association. Television partners RDX Goa and media partners Goa Network7. 

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