Saint Kentigern College has been plastered across media headlines this week – for what many are labelling unethical recruitment tactics.
Regardless of your stance on the matter, I firmly believe there is one learning that rings true throughout this whole debate.
You simply can’t go wrong by developing your own.
News broke last week that opposition schools in Auckland’s 1A Competition would ‘boycott’ playing St. Kent’s in the 2019 competition – to take a stand against their recruitment policy.
St. Kent’s reportedly admitted to recruiting five ‘senior elite’ players from opposition schools for the 2019 season.
In terms of Rugby recruitment, offering Scholarships is nothing new.
And in fact, I am all for them if it provides an educational opportunity and encourages the individual to maintain certain grades and show loyalty.
However recruitment alone does not guarantee success & I would suggest that St Kent’s have missed this point.
They were beaten in the semi-final this year and the impression is that they are trying to ‘buy’ a victory in 2019.
I’m pleased to say that there is another way of producing a championship winning side, and I’ll take the All Blacks as my example.
NZ has a small number of players & a small economy. This is in comparison to the English, French & Japanese whose teams are full of foreigners.
The All Black team is selected from players developed here in NZ where we have development structures that are available to every school, whether they have scholarship funds or not.
Develop your own.
Start with your Coaches at Year 9, who in turn will understand building a team from within.
Developing a pathway grows spirit & commitment, and with this comes a feeling of accomplishment.
There is no genuine sense of accomplishment by simply ‘purchasing talent.’
Investing in yourself – or rather ‘developing your own’ – is never a bad decision.
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