Most people associate the Raffles Ruggers with their loud presence in the canteen, record high number of conduct slips, excessively taped shoulders and knees and random outbreaks of side stepping while they are walking to class (as prescribed by Coach Mark Lee to improve the “art of breaking one’s ankles”). Well, we are that and a whole lot more.
We train 3 times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 4:30pm to 7pm at Turf City. However, our coach occasionally decides that we have had too many pratas and makes us run an extra few sets of 40-60-80 suicide runs which extends the time we stay in the field (not excluding the 1 hour leg cramps after training led by our very own Leonticus Kollaartticus).
There are 2 main events in a year for a Raffles Rugger. The first is the Kiwi Cup, the annual clash between old rivals, Raffles Institution and Saint Andrew’s Junior College, where you can play your heart out and watch your friends wonder what is going on and cheer when they hear other people cheer. This year’s Kiwi Cup will be played at Saint Andrew’s pitch. The second event is the National School Games, where we get to proudly represent our school’s colours and fight alongside our brothers.
But at the end of the day, no matter how much banter and fun we have or how tough training is, Rugby is a sport that changes you. It builds character and resilience, as well as fosters a spirit of family and bonding. It is indeed a hooligan’s game played by gentlemen.