One of Europe’s best rugby teams is back in Bermuda to share its knowledge with the island’s youth and take on the Bermuda Barbarians.
The Saracens have been in Bermuda since Monday and have been touring the island. They have been visiting schools and giving clinics leading up to the game on Saturday night against the Barbarians.
“They won’t want to lose,” said Gareth Nokes, event organizer and chairman of Bermuda Rugby Football Union. “Even if this is a one off or an exhibition game, they will come in with a pretty determined attitude.”
The Saracens are coming off what were described as “bitterly disappointing” defeats in both the Heiniken Cup Finals and the Premiership Final, and will hope to end out the season on a good note with a victory against a tough Barbarians team.
The squad has also been very involved in the community, alongside the charity Beyond Rugby, and have put on a number of events for Bermuda’s children.
“I want to emphasize that we really have got some of the best rugby players in the world on our island. Not just one or two, we’ve got a number of them, so while they’re here we want to do a whole bunch of community events,” added Nokes.
One of the events the Saracens were involved with was a trial with some of Bermuda’s top young players.
“We had a trial with the Saracens Academy coaches, and they put some of our top players through conditioning and fitness tests to see where they benchmark against their academy players. They were really impressed with a couple of our guys. You really never know what can come out of these things but it’s a superb opportunity and something we’d bite our arms off for,” Youth Development Officer Patrick Callow told the Sun.
Apart from that, they have been involved in visiting six schools, a coach to coach seminar, a strength and conditioning seminar, and a charity golf tournament. When working with kids, they place a special emphasis on their core values of respect, discipline, teamwork, enjoyment, and humility.
“They want these kids to look up to them and they want to be approachable, they want to be knowledgeable, they want to be able to speak to the kids or speak to the sponsors here today or speak to the crowd on Saturday and just be honest about what the sport has done for them and how it’s helped them and made them better people.”
The Saracens will face the Barbarians on Saturday at 7pm.