Another season of European competition is fast approaching, so what better time to learn more about our global partner club Dendermonde Rugby Club.
Click here to read part one of our focus on Dendermonde, and a brief history of the club and their achievements, including winning last season’s Belgian Elite League.
This week, Tigers fans can find out about the Dendermonde teams and set-up, and how their title-winning success starts with developing grass-roots rugby.
Dendermonde welcomes youngsters from as young as the U6 age group, introducing them to tag rugby and developing basic rugby skills. From this, players are welcomed to the U8 team where elements of contact rugby are brought into competitive matches.
The next age groups include Dendermonde’s U10, U12 and U14 teams. Up until U14, teams compete in ‘jeudschool’ or Youth School tournaments before taking part in U14, U16 and U18 youth leagues.
Similar to England, U16 and U18 rugby mirrors ‘colts’ rugby preparing players for the high intensity and physicality of top-flight competition. Dendermonde has two senior sides, with the club’s first XV securing two league and cup doubles since 2010.
‘Gazellen’ & ‘Veteranen’
Due to the popularity of the sport in Belgium, Dendermonde also have women’s and veterans squads. Dendermonde has three ‘gazellen’ teams who each compete in their respective leagues, while the veterans team take part in exhibition matches.
This season marks the 25th international 10-a-side Flanders Open Rugby tournament welcoming men’s, women’s and veterans teams. Taking place in May 2018, the tournament hosts 94 teams from around the world with prize money available for the top sides.
Tigers will be supporting this year’s Flanders Open Rugby tournament as the two clubs continue to work together to grow opportunities and develop talent.
You can find out more by visiting their website at www.dendermonderugbyclub.be