Rugby is seventh core sport in SportCares programme
Some of them had never touched a rugby ball up until two weeks ago, but showed no nerves as they were put through their paces at a training session at East Spring Secondary School yesterday.
The group of 14 students went through various drills under the watchful eye of coach Farij Samsudi.
The youngsters are part of a new rugby enrichment programme for schools developed by the SportCares Foundation and Singapore Rugby Union (SRU).
The programme incorporates the use of rugby as a vehicle to improve skills, including problem-solving and goal-setting.
East Spring Secondary is the first school in Singapore to adopt the enrichment programme and sees 14 of its students attend weekly training sessions conducted by current ITE College East Rugby team coach, Farij, every Thursday, from 3pm to 5pm.
The group, aged between 12 and 15, were selected based on leadership quality, responsibility, integrity and resilience.
As part of the programme, they will learn how to perform a tackle and how to pass, kick and catch a rugby ball.
Rugby became the seventh core discipline under the SportCares umbrella, joining basketball, running, football, tennis, wheelchair tennis and water sports.
George Danapal, general manager of SRU, hopes the latest initiative will ignite a greater interest in rugby here.
"Schools have a key role to play in getting young people into sports like rugby and the Singapore Rugby Union is very happy to be here supporting the work done by SportCares to encourage more young people into the game," he said.
The programme has definitely caught the attention of John Legaspi.
The 13-year-old Secondary 2 student said: "I have not watched a rugby match before, so it is very interesting to learn more about this new sport. It is teaching me more about teamwork and discipline."