Bringing it all back home – Old Wesley Youths (U16s and U17s) learn new skills from Leinster Rugby’s Ryan Baird
Ryan Baird Coaching in Ballycorus
Ryan Baird, currently playing with Leinster and a recent Ireland U20 International, ran and coached the combined U16s and U17s Old Wesley training session in Ballycorus last Sunday (10/11/2019). Old Wesley can take some satisfaction as Ryan’s earliest rugby was as a mini in Ballycorus under his father’s watchful eye. Andrew, Ryan’s Dad is a former club player, referee and youths coach with the club.
Ryan was very generous with his time and spent the morning coaching our youths with the latest drills based on his own experience learning from some of the best coaches around, most recently Stuart Lancaster, Leo Cullen both at Leinster and Noel McNamara, Ireland’s U20s head coach. He worked with the youths players specifically on receiving the ball at pace, i.e. the ball carrier (forward or back) had to be accelerating before he received the pass. Mini games within the session had an emphasis on avoiding cutting back into traffic and looking for attacking space. Ryan also did some defensive work with the lads identifying numbers in defence, but always scanning which direction the No. 9 was likely to play and the reaction of the defensive was to predict and stack that side of the ruck with defenders.
It was a real pleasure for both the club’s coaches and youth players to work with a young enthusiastic full professional modern athlete, watching and listening to his advice and approaches to rugby. Many thanks Ryan and we look forward to more inspiring Leinster rugby displays to add to his recent formidable debut in the RDS against the Dragons earlier this month. Ryan is a player that not only the club but the province can be very proud of and is certainly one to watch out for.
Developing the Old Wesley Youths and Mini Academy
As we develop our Old Wesley Academy for Youth and Mini Rugby, we will continue to offer our younger players more coaching sessions from senior and provincial coaches and high profile players. This will benefit our players and coaches. Jonathan Sharkey, the South Dublin Leinster Rugby CRO (Community Rugby Officer) recently held an attack coaching session for youth and mini coaches in October. On the 1st of December Craig Ronaldson (ex-Connacht Rugby) is going to hold a kicking master class in Ballycorus for youths. The club is also particularly proud of five of the U16s in Old Wesley RFC who are on the Leinster Rugby Metro Development Training.