b'THE ELLESMERIAN 97Rugby - U11Preparing a group of Year 5 and 6 pupils for rugby certainly has itsAs this was the first game for Ellesmere it was run as a training challenges. Some pupils will have a level of experience, as they maygame where the game was split into thirds and the coaches were have been involved in club rugby, while others will have never playedallowed to be present on the field to help players find their way. It the game before. Other challenges exist in the form of thewas encouraging to see Ellesmere putting all of their training into physiological differences between the pupils in the same age grade,practice. They moved the ball around well while tackling bravely.and the weather during January and February is often unforgiving andOther competitive games took place against Oswestry School, both not a great way to sell the game. Finally, a two-year layoff fromhome and away. This was a good way to measure progress. It was competitive sport due to Covid-19 did its best to make life difficult.clear to see that Ellesmere were by far the more dominant team. However, all of these challenges could be deemed to be worth it byHowever, once again the game was played in the right spirt, with the the end of the Lent term after witnessing the progress that this smallemphasis being on fun and development for both sides.group of players made.It was pleasing to note how far the Ellesmere team had progressed in The first half of the term was spent introducing the game to thesuch a short space of time. The pupils had acquired the individual players. The basic fundamentals such as basic passing and shape wereskills to be able to play the game while also developing a good delivered through a variety of fun-based games. Contact skills for theunderstanding of game play strategy. However, what was more Year 6 age group were slowly introduced throughout the term. Onceencouraging was the character development that had taken place these foundations were in place, we were able to develop aspectsacross the term. Rugby is well known for developing personal such as attacking and defensive shape. By the end of January,qualities such as resilience, courage, honesty, and teamwork. This was Ellesmere were ready for their first game of rugby. This took placecertainly evident in this group of young players. against Prestfelde away.AJM'