Sport & Education

Rugby tour gets royal seal of approval - 27.07.2015

The South Africa Rugby Legends Association (SARLA) has had a busy week entertaining a delegation from the Monegasque Rugby Federation and their U16 Monaco Rugby Team, who travelled from the Principality as part of the South Africa - Monaco Rugby Exchange Programme.  This is an exciting partnership established between SARLA and The Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation earlier this year. 
Their tour received the royal seal of approval on Monday, with a surprise visit from H.S.H. Prince Albert of Monaco, who is in South Africa on other engagements.  
The Prince chatted to the young players about their South African experience, especially their two 7’s matches played against a Lion’s Development team, which took place as the curtain-raiser to the Springboks Rugby Championship clash against New Zealand at Emirates Airline Park last Saturday.
 “Education, on and off the field, in exchanges like this, help make the world a better place, and this is a great example of what can be done . We look forward to many more exchanges over the years,” Prince Albert added.
H.S.H. Prince Albert believes that it is essential to forge partnerships like this, “With the help of the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation, these young men have had an incredible experience and it’s a great way to showcase the values of sport, which is one of the aims of the Foundation”.
“It was a great privilege and pleasure to have Prince Albert join us today and, especially, for the young rugby players who have certainly done their Principality proud whilst in South Africa,” said Gavin Varejes, President of SARLA. 
The tour to Johannesburg is the second leg of this year’s exchange with SARLA also forms a major part of The Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation’s Sport and Education programme, relying on sporting activities as means to contribute to the well-being and development of children.
In April SARLA took a group of U12 rugby players from Johannesburg’s Orchards Primary School to participate in the ST Devote Rugby Tournament and enjoy a cultural exchange in the Principality.  The tour was also accompanied by the Springbok 7’s head coach Neil Powell and SA 7’s Academy Manager Marius Schoemann, who not only helped coach the young players from Johannesburg, but conducted clinics and sessions for the  Monegasque Rugby Federation . 
“With Princess Charlene’s natural ties to South Africa, and her love of the game of rugby and sport in general, as well as her passion for being able to help make a difference, the fit between her Foundation and SARLA is a natural one,” said Varejes.  
For more information about South Africa Rugby Legends Association:
Photo 1 © Fédération Monégasque de Rugby 
Photo 2 © SARLA