IPROMISE student story #3

Why I am passionate about rugby by Ben Blumberg

I became involved in rugby about 8 years ago, (when I was 4 years old), at Bollene Rugby Club in the South of France. I now play in Hong Kong for the Sai Kung Stingrays, Hong Kong Barbarians, I have been a guest for Sandy Bay on tour to Singapore and was the Captain for the Youth rugby Peninsula team for the historical New Years’ Day Island vs Peninsula tournament. I also played for the South African team in the U12 World Cup Challenge.  I train 5 days a week with Sai Kung Stingrays, the French International School and several one-on-one training sessions with a Professional coach from Kowloon Rugby Club.

Apart from the Pro coaches I also get a huge amount of help from our coaches at Sai Kung Stingrays (my dad included). It’s amazing the incredible support my team-mates give me in Hong Kong but especially during our tours throughout SE Asia. They are almost like my second family! The highlight so far for me was being asked to be the Captain for a Hong Kong Barbarians 7’s team last year to Calcutta, India. We experienced the Holy Festival and also managed to raise money for the Good Hope Foundation (homeless children in Calcutta) through our rugby.

I know how competitive sport is but I will always try to train as hard as I can to play at the highest level possible (maybe for England one day!). Even if I’m not able to do that, I know that I will make many good friends along the way.

Rugby has helped me at school by giving me a sense of empathy towards others (I love to help classmates, especially in PE), it has also helped me to take calculated risks which I may not have done otherwise. Other areas it has benefited me, have been in improving my mental focus and physical strength and also my social skills and respect towards people around me. It’s an amazing sport and I would recommend it to everyone to give it a try.