September 1 2014 Latest news:
Friday, February 28, 2014
A rugby coach will swap Norfolk for the Caribbean next month thanks to the power of social media.
While everyone at his club, Greene King Eastern Counties Division One Swaffham, will be preparing for a trip to Ely on March 8, Francis Donaghy will be heading to St Lucia.
The senior coach will fly out to the small island for at least three training sessions and the volunteer admits he can’t wait to get started.
Donaghy told his club’s website: “It all started out with a chance sighting on Twitter. I spotted a post by St Lucia Rugby, and offered them my services as a coach. The association accepted my offer, and I was asked to come out during the second week of March.
“St Lucia is a small rugby association, an associate member of the IRB (International Rugby Board). It competes in inter-island competition in sevens and 10s. I will be attending sessions in the capital, Castries. Training takes place Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.
“I don’t know about the quality of the players, but in my short time, I hope to improve basic skills and techniques. Whilst out there I will be proudly promoting the Swaffham name and culture of the club. It will make a change to coach in t-shirt and shorts in March.
You can follow me on Twitter, @franman0111. And who knows, this may lead to us having a player from the island turning out for our wee club”.
A spokesman from the North Pickenham Road outfit said everyone “wishes Francis all the best” for his once in a lifetime trip.
Their attentions this weekend will however be on matters much closer to home when Swaffham return to league action against Ipswich YM.
The Norfolk club, fifth in their first season following promotion from Division Two, sit six points and one place behind the Suffolk outfit. The teams drew 20-20 in the reverse fixture.
Elsewhere, league leaders West Norfolk are facing another blank weekend and will be hoping their title-challengers Newmarket do not leapfrog them in the table.
The second-placed side are just two points behind West and will play their game in hand at struggling Harwich & Dovercourt, ninth, tomorrow. Newmarket will be aiming to bounce back from their disappointing Junior Vase exit which came at the hands of Battersea Ironsides – the same club who dumped West out of the competition in the previous round.