Sport: Luxembourg’s national touch rugby squad heads to Italy for European playoffs this week.
Luxembourg Touch, now in its sophomore year, will field two teams--over 40s men and over 30s mixed--in the biennial tournament in Treviso from September 12 to 16.
More than 50 national teams are expected to participate and Luxembourg Touch intends to give rivals “a taste of the Red Lion or Roude Léiw spirit, showing courage in the face of adversity,” the group said in its press announcement.
At its international debut--during the Touch World Cup in Edinburgh last summer--Luxembourg lost all ten of its matches. Of course, it was pitted against top notch teams like Australia and South Africa.
As a still young squad, Luxembourg looks at this year’s European championships as another learning experience. “Playing in Treviso against experienced teams like France, England, Wales will raise the standard of our game, and teach us more about it,” the team’s Paolo Tarakdjian told the press.
Touch is a low impact form of rugby featuring six-a-side teams that play on half a regular sized rugby pitch. Teams try to score the most points before being touched six times by their opponents.
“Because the game is not based on physical contact, but on speed, skill and strategy, it is played by both sexes, and very often in mixed teams,” team treasurer Nick Frank said (as demonstrated during last month’s Kick Cancer Into Touch charity tourney, pictured here).
“In Australia alone, over 500,000 children regularly play touch,” he told Delano last year. “This makes it a very social sport.”
Luxembourg Touch is part of the Rugby Club Luxembourg, and trains and plays year-round on Wednesday nights at the RCL’s Cessange facility. The team welcomes new players and supporters.