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What are the Duties Required of a Rugby Manager?

Think of everything you do as a rugby coach, and all the things that you don’t have time to do, and in a pretty rough summary we have defined what is required of the team manager.

The bad news is you will need to multi-task so much – yes, without careful organisation it will seem as if you never stop - that you will learn numerous aspects that need to take place before a game of rugby can be played.

Notifying the players and being the communication link between the squad and the coach for all things outside direct coaching, the playing gear, transport, readiness of the ground including getting the balls, and being the ‘date person’ – he or she who knows every appointment, training session and event relating to the team’s rugby season.

You will need to be the link for it all.

The good news is that for all intents and purposes, you are as important as a coach, but while such figures may come and go, a team manager is the glue and the off field general that holds all the finer details together.

Even better is that at higher levels, your role will become more specialised, and you will get support, the luxuries of bag men and game operation’s staff come with team management at senior and international level.

Let us first touch base on some duties of the team manager at club and junior levels that might be missed when thinking at All Blacks level.

Remember that you are as responsible for equipment, operations and the overall organisation of the team.

Picture a meeting with the coach who outlines the training sessions, routine for match day and potentially where a squad will travel within the coming future.

That is all part of your role.manager.jpg

Then think of an upcoming match, and a fair amount of what is involved on field.

Don’t worry! Certain aspects such as stadium organisation and security will be covered by ground staff, but remember, in some cases organisation of referees, scorers and medical staff will fall under your umbrella.

The key here is routine and knowing each game week what is required, but also working with all of the other personal – remember don’t think you can do it all by yourself – there might be plenty to do but there is always support.

So without delay here are some checklists! (And when you have remembered all these – add another ten!)

Off the field/during the week:

•    Have all player details, from the basics like address and phone numbers through to potential medical conditions
•    Organising all team support structures including medical staff and potential trainers or fitness teams
•    Ensuring that memberships fees are paid and registrations are current
•    Ensuring players are present for training and match days, schedules are key
•    Players coached and made aware as to off field duties including functions
•    Ensuring that the Captain operates in the appropriate manner
•    Recognising the efforts of the referee and ensuring the team cooperates with necessary officials
•    Ensure injured players are looked after, one of the core responsibilities of a manager is to liaise with medical organisations
•    Help the coach keep in touch with players
•    Jerseys, shorts, socks and tracksuits are clean and sorted
•    At club level, check for other duties including community work or fan responsibilities
•    DON’T FORGET TRANSPORT (you would be surprised how often organising the bus is missed)

On the field/game day

•    Making sure the field is in suitable condition or liaise with the ground management
•    Food and refreshments – primarily for halftime – are ready to go
•    Ensuring the availability of match-day balls, flags, tees, balls, jerseys and other equipment
•    Making sure changing rooms are ready to go and afterwards swept out and cleaned
•    Assist coaching team as necessary with warm up drills
•    Liaise with medical staff or doctors; if none are present you will need a first-aid kit!
•    Touch base with match officials
•    Monitor players, including substitutions and ensuring all players get a game

Remember as a manager you have as much responsibility, if not more so than a coach, even if they are the obvious figurehead and your role is more behind the scenes and maintenance.

But for all of your checklists, remember the most important point of all.

Have fun and enjoy yourself, a manic and stressed manager doesn’t equate to a high performing rugby team.