Super Schools Cup offers new format

Tue, Jan 30, 2024, 1:22 AM
GCDRU Media
by GCDRU Media

The Super Schools Cup gets a makeover in 2024, with the competition shifting to the action-packed, rugby 7s format.

The annual tournament, catering to Gold Coast based schools, will now reach a wider array of students by offering the more accessible 7s format.

Additional age groups have also been added, in an effort to further grow the Olympic sport.

We chatted with Tristan Mana, Director of Rugby at King's Christian College, whose girls team clinched victory in the 2023 competition. Tristan shares insights into the unique dynamics of preparing for tournament rugby and the lasting impact the competition has had on players and the broader school community.

GCDRU: Congratulations on the 2023 campaign. Can you tell us how you helped prepare your team for success last season?

Tristan: With the State All Schools being in term 4, the player preparation for Term 1 Super Schools carried over from the previous year and on through the school holidays for our Girls 7s program.

During the Super Schools season, our Girls 7s team has overnight camps at school and travels to overnight tournaments, which only strengthens their relationships and team bonding.

The King's Girls 7's Coaching Staff has an amazing knack for bringing good people together very quickly, which is the primary reason our teams enjoy playing competitively together.

GCDRU: Winning the Super Schools Cup is a big achievement. In the aftermath of the tournament, did you notice any lasting impact on the enthusiasm for rugby within your school or the broader community?

Tristan: The Super Schools competition is during the School 7s Representative trials in term 1, so the players are very lucky to have competition conditions to train in while preparing for trials.

Many of our players were able to utilise Super Schools for match fitness, setting them up very well for South Coast & Queensland opportunities.

GCDRU: How do you think the 7s format will impact your players and how will this affect your preparations in 2024?

Tristan: The under 15 Girls is the largest Girls 7s squad in our program and growing for 2024. We supported the introduction of Girls 10s at the Ballymore Cup last year and have registered again, so hopefully we can be involved with driving Girls Rugby Union alongside the Rugby 7's format.

Our athletes are all multi-sporters, so they engage in as much fun activity as possible to build their athleticism while they continue to play their main sport of choice.

The Super Schools is a great way to expose both returning & new players to Rugby 7s.

GCDRU: For schools gearing up for this next Super Schools Cup, what advice would you give to coaches and players to maximise their experience, enjoyment, and performance in the tournament?

Tristan: Collaboration is the key.

Rugby 7's demands your attention as both a Coach & Player, as it's one of the few games that requires all players on the field to master both their athletic conditioning and their skill set. Utilise your school Gym & S&C staff.

There are lots of wonderful elite players willing to come into your school and mentor your program, so collaborate with both GCDRU and the local rugby clubs to get good coaching support.

And finally, collaborate with the other schools and get training matches, talk about game plans after games, and just enjoy being a part of the Rugby 7's experience in Australia's School Sport Heartland here on the GC!

The 2024 Super Schools Cup 7s tournament is on Wednesday, March 6 (location tbd). $140 entry fee per team. Competitions will be offered for girls and boys in the under 13, 15 and 18 age groups.

Register at https://www.jotform.com/form/223047602050846

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