(Text by Reporter Huang Jingjing/ Photo by Reporter Yu Ruwen) On June 30, the Super Weekend of Rugby held by Shanghai Football Rugby Association of 2018 Shanghai City Amateur League fired Jing’an Workers’ Stadium, seeming like a mini “Shanghai Super Bowl”.
On that day, Shanghai Football Rugby Association was formally founded, which meant that the sport entered a brand new stage in its popularization in Shanghai. Shanghai has long been an important city for the rugby sport in China. The historic moment was also greatly supported and valued by NFL (National Football League). Russell Wilson, an NFL super star serving Seattle Seahawks, personally appeared in the site and guest-starred a coach to bring the children and citizens a zero-based rugby experience course. “Run! Run! Run! Trace the ball and catch it!” Led by Wilson and other coaches, the children received training on passing and catching. “I’m glad to see that the parents give great support to their children for playing rugby. American football can be a great help in improving the individual personalities of the children and enhancing their awareness of team work.” Wilson said.
According to Dai Fuqi, Secretary-General of Shanghai Football Rugby Association, in the last ten years, the rugby sport developed fast in Shanghai. The people participating in the sport can generally be divided into two groups: children and white collars. At present, in Shanghai, over 8,000 pupils have rugby classes at least once every week, and most of the classes they attend are of public interest. Lots of foreign white collars and overseas students who returned to Shanghai bring the rugby culture to Jing’an, and what they need most is more amateur competitions suitable for them to participate in. Jing’an District Sports Bureau expressed that Jing’an District hoped that by conducting public rugby events of various forms, it could promote the development of rugby and enrich the after-hours cultural lives of the public. The district also hoped that such events could help cultivate the fighting spirit of self-challenge, self-confidence and unremitting struggle in the face of adversities.