1. November 2011


Coaches Sick List Latest
Burnley RUFC Coaches were blighted by a catalogue of illnesses and injuries during the summer and at the start of the season. The latest bulletin is:

Phil Leck has happily recovered from another visit to Blackburn hospital with gastric problems and has been back up at the Club again.

Andy Roberts spent most of the summer in a neck collar after an injury whilst doing a Rugby League training drill. He has now returned to Burnley College. Assisted by Brian Foley and Chris Lowden he is back coaching the Burnley College team which plays its home matches in the British Colleges Sport North West Division 1 Competition at Holden Road. They recently won the North West Further Education Colleges 10-a-side Competition held at Preston Grasshoppers RFC.

Nic Ralph continues to make a miraculous recovery from the ravages of cancer. After having several stays at Christies over the last couple of months he has recently been back at Junior training. Keep it up Nic and we look forward to you being back in a tracksuit soon.

Getty Schinkel continues to have problems with his back and underwent a second operation. He was laid up for several weeks with the boredom relieved by watching the pre-RWC Internationals. He is now thankfully back to coaching again although not able to take part in any physical activities. Whilst Getty was out of action Simon Finnan and Nino Angelone did a great job leading the training. Thanks to both of you for your efforts.

As if this was not enough, Simon Finnan was the recipient of a Southport player’s knee in his back after he had scored a try in the opening match of the season. An ambulance took him to hospital but he was thankfully discharged with severe bruising. Surprisingly the enthusiastic Simon was back coaching within a couple of weeks and was playing two weeks later.

Team News
The catalogue of woes has extended to the players with around twelve players at one time being off injured. Physiotherapist John Sinclair has been kept busy!! We wish the long-term injured a speedy recovery. It has been heartening to see them on the touchline cheering on their compatriots. These injuries, and a couple of suspensions, have meant that we have not had a great start to the season.

The first team is currently third from the bottom in North Lancashire Division One; the second team sixth in the University of Salford Division Four North and the third team ninth in the University of Salford Division Five North.

In spite of this the enthusiasm and dedication of all the fit players has resulted in good attendance at training on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Should you know of anybody who would like to share the benefits of playing rugby at Holden Road, please contact Team Secretary Simon Finnan - 07988 122186 [M].

Rugby Ready Course
Jamie Cunningham, Tom Gaughan and ‘Sharpie’ Sharpe recently attended the Rugby Ready Course. Future local courses will be held at Rochdale RFC on Mon 28th November (6pm - 9pm) and Bolton RUFC on Mon 23rd January (6pm - 9pm). Please pass the word round and encourage your friends and parents new to the Club to attend.

CPD Coaching Sessions
CRC Chris Lowden will be running the following CPD coaching sessions at the Club on Sunday mornings – lasting one hour:

Sun 13th November 2011 – Tag Coaching - Introduction to tag, what we want tag to achieve and games that can teach the core skills of rugby.

Sun 4th December 2011 – Passing / Running / Evasion / Tackling – Introduction to the core skills of passing, running / evasion and how to introduce tackling and contact to juniors. Games to develop these.

Sun 15th January 2012 – Scrum / Line out / Rucking & Mauls – why do we need them, safety in coaching them, how to develop them. Body position. Games to develop these.

These sessions are aimed at developing coaches and giving them a chance to see how to develop these skills in their players through a live training session. There will also be a chance for coaches to ask questions and see the answers being coached. All sessions will be game-based to improve the game-sense coaching approach.

Level One Coaching Award
Congratulations to Simon Finnan and John Richmond on gaining the Level One Coaching Award which was held at Myerscough College in the summer. We are keen that any other Coaches who have obtained the Rugby Ready Award, and shown commitment to coaching the Junior teams, will go on a Level One Course in the future.

Level Two Coaching Award
Simon Finnan has been put forward to take the Level Two Coaching Award following the experience he has gained coaching the First Team and the Junior Colts. It is hoped that Getty Schinkel will also complete the award because problems with his back unfortunately preventing him from finishing the course last November.

RFU CPD Courses
Coaches wishing to progress to the Level Two Course are expected to hold the Level One Coaching Award, coach a team regularly and attend CPD courses.

Details of RFU coaching courses, and a variety of other courses connected with Rugby, can be found on the Lancashire County Rugby Football Union website –

Refereeing Courses
An ELRA Part One and Part Two Course were held at the Club during the summer. Success candidates were Jason Bell, Scott Cryer, Lee Wold and John Williams, with Jim Moodie passing the course at Bradford GS.

These courses are an ideal opportunity to improve your refereeing skills which will make your officiating at Junior matches and Club matches more effective, and hence more enjoyable. It will also be helpful for any person hoping to further their coaching career. Please contact me if you are interested in attending one of these courses.

The RFU is arranging for the visit of an experienced referee on a Sunday morning or afternoon to support Club Referees by providing them with some positive feedback and encouragement.

North Lancashire Development Centre
Lancashire County RFU has established three Development Centres throughout the County under the direction of Lancashire Coach Mark Nelson. We are attached to the one based at Fylde RFC. A variety of initiatives have been set up, including experienced coaches visiting different clubs to assist coaches in that locality. More details will appear as the sessions are organised.

Coaches of Junior Teams
Chairman Mick Heys and Head Coach Nic Ralph have a dedicated squad of coaches who look after the five age-group squads. Tag – Martin Churchill; U9s – Scott Cryer and John Richmond; U11s – Adrian Knowles and Jim Moodie; U12s – Lee Wold; U14/15s – Martin Evans, Paddy Murphy and Nic Ralph

Members who have attended the Rugby Ready Course in the past have volunteered their services to assist the various teams – Mark Hanson, Michael Hartley, Mick McGee, Adam Spencer and Jack Stockdale. Mick Heys will be allocating them to the various teams.

The two Colts teams have been re-established and are increasing in numbers each week as a result of contact with Burnley College. CRC Chris Lowden is coaching the Senior Colts and Simon Finnan the Junior colts.

Thanks to this happy band of Volunteers who freely give of their time to coach the youngsters and also thanks to the team of back-up staff who carry out all the organisational tasks and of course provide the food.

Mick Heys is always keen to learn of any parents or players who would like to get involved. He awaits a call on 07972 281680 [M].

CRB Disclosure Reminder
Please check your CRB disclosure certificate. It is mandatory for coaches to have a valid Criminal Records Bureau disclosure certificate, specifically for Rugby Union. Any coach without a certificate should contact the new Club Safeguarding Officer, Mark Pullan on or 07877 903914 [M]. There is no charge.

Coaching Resources
Dan Cottrell (, Head of Coaching for twenty years at Cranleigh School, Skills Coach for Young Ospreys and Coach of Wales Women in the recent Womens’ Rugby World Cup circulates ‘Better Rugby Coaching Newsletter’. When one signs up, one receives a couple of free coaching guides.

Any Questions
Should any member have any queries, about any of the courses, I can be contacted on 01282 771120 (H/B) or 07771 711405 (M), or by e-mail on

Peter Hughes (Club Coaching Co-ordinator) - 12.11.2011