Zapping World Fifteen Interview Rémi Bonfils: Captain in the French team?
The start of the Top 14 season is fast approaching. Only a few weeks left for the different teams to refine their physical condition, work on the game system and arrive in the best possible shape to perform during the next exercise and achieve the objectives set. Objectives which will concern the championship, of course, but also the European Cup for some of the clubs. A somewhat special European Cup this season since some South African teams will take part. If teams like Castres, Racing 92 or Montpellier will not be opposed during the group stages, others will come up against it.
This is particularly the case of LOU Rugby who will oppose the Bulls. A meeting that could mark a milestone in the club’s season as indicated by Xavier Garbajosa for the Midi Olympique.
“I don’t want to get into the controversy of ‘for or against South Africans in Europe’. against a province of a major nation. It’s a way of calibrating. If we have the ability to fight and hang a result with the Bulls, then we can do it everywhere. Then, we will adjust, in particular When it comes to facing Saracens, it comes down to our home crowd but in my eyes there couldn’t be the best draw to get people interested.”
A season in which the Lyonnais, 9th last year, will be aiming for the Top 6. But with increasing competition each season to reach these qualifying places for the finals, the new LOU manager knows that nothing will be simple and that every detail will be important.
“More than ever, we must be aware that nothing will be easy, that each match will be a test and that each week we will have to give ourselves the means to do better than the week before. For us, the staff, it is important to make players aware that the smallest point is important, that qualification can be decided with a bonus. You can lose a point one day, but you have to make sure to catch it up the following week, otherwise to open the credit counter. It may seem like a boat, but every game, every week, every point will be important.”
This 2022-2023 season will notably be marked by a European Cup, of which certain South African clubs are now part. If some are against, Xavier Garbajosa sees the match against the Bulls as an important step in the season.