In its series of Look Who’s Talking events, the St Andrews Rotary Club was delighted when Gregor Townsend agreed to be the latest high-profile interviewee. An audience of some 250 had the opportunity on the evening of October 23 to hear Scotland’s National Rugby coach give a range of insights both into playing at the highest team level and also his approach and priorities in his coaching methodologies.
The format for this event comprised two sessions where in the first Gregor was interviewed by Scott Lawson, who had 47 caps for Scotland, and was now the Director of Rugby at the University of St Andrews. The questions posed covered Gregor’s periods as a young amateur player in the Borders through to professional Club rugby experiences and on to his role as the coach of the Scotland Team. Following an intermission, the second part of this event was a question-and-answer session where Gregor addressed a variety of rugby and more general sport-related aspects raised by members of the audience. These included issues relating to the nurturing of young rugby players through to the injury levels suffered in the professional game. Mr Townsend gave clear and insightful replies to the specific questions asked by Scott Lawson and by the more general questions arising from the audience participation and it was particularly interesting to hear first-hand of the significant difference in coaching techniques that he had experienced during his playing career. It was also very evident that he felt privileged to be Scotland’s National Rugby Coach and to learn that he was still refining his own coaching culture within the current challenges and perspectives that apply to international fixtures and to the planning and preparations for the next Rugby World Cup in particular.
All of those who attended this Rotary event, and who had the opportunity to benefit from Gregor Townsend’s willingness to share so many elements of his expertise and experience, felt greatly enlightened and enriched by his openness and by his engaging personality which created a most agreeable and interactive atmosphere for the evening.
Interestingly, on this occasion the Rotary Club of St Andrews had already decided to direct all of the proceeds to supporting the Arclight Project* that is being championed by Dr Andrew Blaikie and his colleagues within the Global Health Implementation Team of the University of St Andrews. Thanks are therefore conveyed on behalf of Rotary to all those who bought tickets to attend this Look Who’s Talking and to supporting the raffle which raised additional funds and to Henderson Black Ltd who were the hosts for this event.
[The Rotary Club of St Andrews is working with the Global Health Team of the University of St Andrews to make Arclight devices available to all trainee nurses, clinical offers, optometrists and doctors in Malawi for a period of three years in an effort to assist in the early diagnosis of cataract, glaucoma and trachoma which are the main causes of blindness.]
back Ways and Means