Rugby to grow bigger and gain more outreach and popularity in Georgia, as per Rugby Union initiative and with the support of the Georgian government, around 100 new pitches will be constructed accross the country for children and youngsters in the nearest future.
Prime Minister of Georgia Irakli Garibashvili said this in his statement during the meeting with Georgia Rugby Union executives and rugby players at Aia Arena, Kutaisi on September 4. The initiative to build rugby pitches in 45 locations was raised by Georgia Rugby Union President Ioseb Tkemaladze. After having approved the rugby development plan, he remarked that it is intended to build pitches of three different types:
“Since the day of my election as Georgia Rugby Union President, my team and I started to work on a long-term rugby development plan which incorporates construction of rugby infrastructure in every municipality of the country. In a brief period of time, we studied all regions and created pitch designs of three different types, with varying surface and accommodations. The plan was presented to the government of Georgia, and it was agreed that pitches would be built in 45 different locations “.
“We can state that starting with 2022, children in all regions of Georgia will be gradually given access to rugby infrastructure, which will enable us to continue raising new generations of true sportsmen, likes of Mamuka Gorgodze, David Kacharava, Giorgi Nemsadze, Merab Kvirikashvili, Merab Sharikadze, David Zirakashvili and many other stars of Georgian rugby“.
“This is the continuation of the great work started by Bidzina Ivanishvili years ago, which brought us the current success. It is this success and popularity of the game in Georgia that caused the demand to build rugby infrastructure in every region of the country.“
“The development plan will help us rethink rugby as not only a sport, but also as a national heritage, natural expression of Georgian cultural code and history. This process will also support development of sports-tourism and foster employment in various regions of Georgia, where foreign sportsmen will be able to train and enjoy beautiful scenery.”
The Prime Minister of Georgia Irakli Garibashvili thanked the Georgian Athletes: “Dear our brilliant rugby players, our legendary sportsmen, I, as head of government and ordinary citizen, would like to greet you with profound respect and thank you for the feelings of pride and joy which we all experienced due to you. Rugby is our game indeed – you proved this with your performance, your commitment. The success you achieved in a very short time, is most valuable.
“The Cartu Foundation and Bidzina Ivanishvili made a great contribution to development of Georgian rugby. Large investment program started 12 years ago, and each Lari (GEL) was converted into a tangible outcome. This is a result of precisely defined, planned and implemented investments.”
“The fact that today the national rugby team of a small country like ours is on the 12th place in world rankings, is a source of pride. It is our ambition to enter the top five, and we will do this together – the government, the business sector and, of course, YOU. You will have maximum support both, from the government and from business, so that the outcome is doubled.“
“Development plan implies creation of up to 100 new sports hubs accross the country. In all the municipalities dozens of training bases will be built, so that we can attract hundreds and thousands of enthusiastic youngsters into rugby and promote healthy life-style. Importantly, we all saw how especially successful the Georgians are in rugby. You deserve even more support and assistance, and I personally assure you will have all the support the Government can afford“ said Prime Minister.
The meeting held at Aia Arena was attended by veteran Lelos and Georgian National Team Captain Merab Sharikadze:
“We value the support and attention we receive from the government of Georgia. I am confident that this project will bring very good results – not only from the point of rugby, but generally, as the means for promoting the healthy life-style.“