Last year, Matthew McNeil came to Loudenvielle to vacation with his wife and two daughters. The lover of hiking and skiing in the mountains decided, after traveling through the department, to come and spend a year of vacation in the Vallée des Gaves.
Since August, the head of New Zealand advertising company Medialab, even if he continues to keep in touch with his employees working remotely, has moved to Arcizans-Avant. He started playing rugby at the age of 6 and then when he was older he played 9 positions or center positions. After hanging up the tapes, he looked after the youngsters at his club Marist St Patrick’s in Wellington. Since the start of the season, he has joined the USA Rugby School where he has taken charge of the under-12 team. He was warmly welcomed by Argelès teachers who were keen to share their experiences at youth level and discover how coaching works in New Zealand where young people develop according to their weight rather than their age.
Eager to introduce his family to a culture different from his country of origin, he does not regret his choice: “I was greeted by several teachers at Rugby School during our first meeting. I feel lucky that I was able to help a little. I hope that despite the language barrier, I will contribute to the progress of Children who have entrusted me. Given the quality of teachers in this club, I think I have a lot to learn from them rather than them learning from me. “The difference compared to my country is that the parents here are also very involved whereas in New Zealand we often have daycare. As for my children, I would like to warmly thank the teachers at the Jean Burdett School who did their best to integrate them quickly. “USA is a big club that also has great teams of seniors, juniors and juniors, and I am very happy to see them playing.”
It’s really an opportunity for the kids at the club’s Rugby School to be able to benefit from his advice.
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