Georgian Rugby Union (GRU) held press-conference in Department of Sport and Youth Affairs regarding the successful participation of Georgian Under-18 Team on European Championship in Italy and camp, that Georgian National Team "A" had in South Africa.
Under-18 Team have won the bronze medals of European Championship while "A" team played two games in South Africa against Stellenbosch Rugby Academy Under-20 and Under-21 teams and won both, 41:20 and 21:10.
According to Gia Nizharadze, The President of GRU, the historical agreement was signed in South Africa. Twice a year, on March-April and November-December, Georgian team will travel to South Africa where it will not only play test-games, but train with the leading rugby specialists. The players will get a chance to widen not only their rugby experience, but rugby knowledge too.
Coaches will go with the team and have special trainings too. Beside that, Once in a year, specialists from SA will come to Georgia for the same purpose - to bring more knowledge to fellow Georgian specialists.
"The achievements we made weren't easy. South Africa is one of the leading rugby nations and we had to prove that we are worth of their attention. If things will go smooth, I believe we can compete with many great rugby nations and fight for the spot in top-12 for the 2015 World Championship."-Said Nizharadze. He also thanked Georgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Honorary Consul of Georgia in South Africa Gerald Vormag for their help regarding the camp.
The Head Coach of Georgian Under-18 Team, Levan Mgeladze, told few words about European Championship in Italy. He said that he is very pleased with the level of his team's play, though result could be even better. According to the coach, the main reasons behind the loss against Ireland was injuries of the leading players and disbelieving that they can outcome such a great team.
"It was a hard game against Belgium too. They have many French players in their squad, so you can say it's actually France "B", but we could win after the bad first half of the game."-Said he. Mgeladze praised his team once more and said that it's a best generation he have ever trained.
"Whole team made a good job in Italy, coaches, doctors... everyone. The match between Georgia and Ireland was named as a best game of the tournament." - Said Gia Gorgaszlidze, Vice-President of GRU.
The players have answered some questions as well.
Levan Gogolashvili: "We were ready for this tournament. We lacked some faith against Ireland. And we lost first game against Belgium, but were able to make it in the second"
Lasha Lomidze: "We had a good, friendly team and we got great experience during the tournament. Thanks to the federation for support.
Merab Sharikadze: We had hard game against Romania. It's pity we lost to Ireland. Ireland and France are better in hand-to-hand and technical play, so we are looking forward to improve in that field.
Levan Maisashvili, The Head Coach of Georgian National Team "A" was brief about their trip to South Africa. "It was clear in the first game, that Africans underestimated our team in the first game so we won easily. They improved their defense in second match, though we were still better. It was very important and necessary camp for us"-Said Maisashvili "we had trainings two times a day, and guys didn't have time for anything else than rugby"
"It was really great trip and we got so much experience from it. The agreement between GRU and Stellenbosch academy is really great. South Africa has rich rugby traditions and being on a friendly terms with them is valuable achievement" - Said Lexo Gugava, The Vice-Captain of Georgian "A".
Photo By Tamuna Kulumbegashvili
Sports Department Press Center