Namibia’s Rugby World Cup preparations commence
With just under six months to go to this year’s Rugby World Cup in Japan, the Namibian team is hard at work and are scheduled to play about 16 to 19 matches before the global showpiece, the rugby body said last week.
Namibia starts with the Cape Town Invitational Tournament where they face the U/20 teams from South Africa, Georgia and Argentina. This will be followed by the well awaited SuperSport Rugby Challenge which takes place between 27 April and 22 June 2019.
Zimbabwe for the first time will also be participating in the competition. The Welwitchias first match will take place in Windhoek against the Golden Lions XV on 27 April at the Hage Geingob Stadium.
Both form part of the pool which also includes the Blue Bulls XV, Griquas, Griffons, Leopards and Pumas.
In preparation for the Rugby World Cup the focus of the squad is all about preparing to be Tier 1 Test match ready by 22 September when Namibia play Italy in the opening of the Rugby World Cup in Japan.
“We have four key competition phases in order to get ready, these include the above-mentioned matches in Cape Town and SuperSport Rugby Challenge along with the Nations Cup in Uruguay during June followed by the African gold cup in July and then hopefully a home test series in August,” said Head Coach Phil Davies
“We have done an exhausting amount of analysis over the past year focusing on game statistics of when Tier 1 play Tier 2 countries over the past 12 months. All data gathered is being used to prepare the team in a way that will make us as competitive as possible come the World cup – All the coaching staff have created a four-pillar system focused around the quarters of a match, for example First Quarter of the match Tier 2 teams on average concede around two scores when playing Tier 1 teams,” he added.
The preparation is aimed at building a game model and the principles that are based on physical, mental, technical and tactical performance, in order to improve performance. The preparation will be focused around controlling and building on each performance, that “you can’t control the results, but you can control your performance,” he said.
“The aim is to give the players a huge amount of confidence going to Japan knowing they are fit and organized to compete against some of the best teams in the world,” Phil Davies added.