John Mataira heads into the Asia Rugby Championship Division III West as Jordan’s new head coach.
Jordan will compete against Lebanon and Qatar for the first piece of silverware in this year’s Asia Rugby Championship.
The tournament will take place in Doha and will comprise of a round-robin format before the eventual winner is decided.
Lebanon are looking for a third successive title but Mataira is aiming for success in his first international competiton as head coach.
“I haven’t done too much formal coaching but I am from New Zealand have played rugby for 50 years, including a year playing in Japan in 1996.
“With only a month to prepare for the tournament in Qatar we have been concentrating on building fitness, basic skills, honing our set pieces, and working on some basic attacking and defensive strategies.
“We hope to improve on last year’s performance at the tournament in all aspects of the game with more ball, more territory, better decisions and to defend our line as if our lives depended on it.
“We will play to the best of our ability to make ourselves and our country proud.”
The Asia Rugby Championship provides a pathway for many players and countries in Asia to qualify for Rugby World Cups as well as offering opportunity to gain more experience as the development and growth continues.
“We are actively trying to build the sport of rugby in Jordan, to improve both the standard of play and increase playing numbers, both male and female,” added Mataira.
“International competition is vital to measure our progress against our neighbours and rivals in the region.
“The ARC is very important for Jordan as it is crucial in the development process for the game and will provide the players, especially our younger players, with the experience they need to improve their skills, attitude and rugby instincts in order to build for the future.
“We are very optimistic about the future of rugby in Jordan. With the invaluable support of our sponsor Land Rover and we are actively and successfully recruiting players from other sports, in particular martial arts and basketball, into our rugby fraternity.
“We hope to increase the number of clubs, the number of players, and thereby the standard of rugby in Jordan, as quickly as possible.
“Our most promising recent accomplishments include developing a women’s team and an U20 team, both of which have started participating in international competitions.”
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