At the regional and Spanish-American level, the Uruguayan Andrés Vilaseca needs little or no presentation. With two Rugby World Cups on his back, with the brand new captaincy in his national team and in the franchise, as a reference and unavoidable voice, few better than him to tell the present of Peñarol, the Aurinegro team that will represent Uruguayan rugby from March 16 when the American Rugby Super League begins.
“On January 7 we started the first part of the preseason de Peñarol, divided into two phases, only with the players who are Uruguayans. A mix between experience and youth, world cup and youth with few games that made their first weapons with Los Teros in the South American 4 Nations and in the series against Spain in October and November of last year, “explained the center formed at the Old Boys Club.
Andrés added that “that first part was focused on the physical and it worked also in skills, but I think what we worked on the most was in the gym. We have never had the possibility to focus on it, in this way. It was a very tough stage, with up to four sessions in the day“.
The lOn February 8, the five Argentine players joined in Montevideo as well as coaches Pablo Bouza and Esteban Meneses. “That day we started the second phase of the preseason that, while still focused on the physical, is focused on building the group and, of course, in the game as well “.
About the incorporations that arrived from the western bank of the Río de la Plata, Andrés stated that “the boys are very good. They are all very good players and they will undoubtedly add up to the level of the team. It is positive on all sides. Making it five is much easier for the group to consolidate even faster. “
In the first edition of the American Rugby Super League, the Peñarol team that played in the first and historic match with Selknam at the Charrúa Stadium, had as teammates other than logically Uruguayan players, others from Argentina, Portugal, Namibia, South Africa, Tonga, and Colombia. It was the most international team in the first edition of the tournament.
“Last year it became more complex due to the language issue, with many nationalities and languages. That used up a little more energy when it came to training. We have all been here, from minute one, in perfect harmony. We have had few training sessions and it is as if the boys had arrived here months ago. “
“Expectations are soaring“He assured.” As little by little everything is returning to normal and the world continues to advance, playing this Super League is a privilege as well as a great opportunity for us and for the region. “
“SLAR is going to be extremely competitive; very tough and demanding. It has been two months in which, in addition to what he will demand of us on the pitch, he will also demand a lot from us outside, because we are going to be focused on a health bubble. “Finding the positive aspects Andrés says that” he will also give that time to work around the group. “
“Competitiveness is going to happen because there are no unbalanced franchises. They will all have well-armed teams, even, harmonious and, above all, eager to play. That will require an extra effort on the pitch, because it is not just a game. It’s that, plus the desire to be able to do it and stay at a high level throughout the event, “said the captain.
“All the teams will arrive well prepared because there is a lot of awareness that playing this Super League and at this level in the region, is very good and beneficial. The South American 4 Nations helped us all and was very positive” Uruguay, who was local, was particularly benefited. “It helped us to broaden the base and several of those young people are today part of Peñarol. That tournament was not easy from the results side, but that is a bit aside and is not an excuse at all … we urgently needed to expand the base and know that these guys had and have what it takes to play in Los Teros and eventually , qualification for the Rugby World Cup “, emphasized who will once again be the captain of Peñarol in this second edition of the SLAR.
“Peñarol, is, without a doubt, the reflection that we continue to grow in High Performance. This is a confirmation of the goal set by the Uruguay Rugby Union. It is not only that we aim to be in France 2023 which is something close, it goes further in time. But, first things first: SLAR must be enjoyed, played and if possible, win it. “Today we are all very focused, concentrated, happy, expectant, eager to be and show that Peñarol is and will be a competitive team“.