In Part 1 of this series we looked at how the club had started out from nothing and had grown into a team. Here we reflect on the team’s continued growth and what we have been up to over the last month…
Off the field the growing interest in the club has been amazing. We have featured on ITV Wales, which was amazing, as well as getting back onto Wales Online in a new article. This exposure has seen many people get in touch with the club looking to join and there has also been further media opportunities arise – so hopefully more good news to follow!
On the field we have continued to develop at pace. The focus at the moment is getting the players as much experience as possible of playing the game, in order to help develop their knowledge and understanding. While not neglecting the drills and teaching of the fundamentals, the focus has been more on game situations and scrimmages to allow the players to see how the plays work, what they are looking at and how they need to move around the field.
On Offence, we have been moving to putting in the play calls as verbal calls rather than using diagrams to show what players need to do. On Defence, we have continued to develop the coverages and add in a new one to give ourselves a complete package of mixed coverages and blitzes.
As we move forwards, now that players have got that better understanding of the mechanics of the game, the tactics, and the logic behind what we do, we will be starting to re-focus back upon the fundamental skills. This will help them to not only get into the positions that they need to be in but once they are there to execute successfully – be that scoring a touchdown or intercepting the ball.
But the team is always looking for a new challenge and a new way to test itself. Luckily for us we have one of the country’s top male flag teams right next door…
Currently sitting atop of the SWC South, and with the #1 Offence and #1 Defence in their division the Cardiff Hurricanes gave us exactly that, running their usual playbook against us. We are extremely grateful that they took time out of their season to help us develop, and it was an amazing opportunity for our players to experience what an elite team looked like, how they operated, and for us to see just how far we had come.
From a coaching perspective it was brilliant to see how the team responded. At no time did they show any fear or nerves at playing such a high calibre team. Rather they were constantly full of excitement that they had this chance and just revelled in the opportunity.
And we made plays! Considering that this was the first time that we had properly utilised play calls from the sideline in this fashion as well as the fact that several of the defensive plays were still new to the players, they did amazingly well.
At the end, what was also great to hear was players saying that they wanted to do it all again. They want this type of competition. They want to be pushed to get better.
Alongside this game against the Hurricanes, with 7 players having now attended across both national Diamond series trials, several players looking to join a scratch team to play in a flag tournament over July and August, as well as some looking to head down to Plymouth for a national flag development day later this month, the future looks good for Women’s Football here in South Wales.
Now we just see what the next couple of months delivers…