Simpkin's push for Chinese division

THE technical director of the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union, George Simpkin, has appealed for more club coaches and more referees next season.

New Zealander Simpkin, who is in charge of the Union's development programme to spread the game within the Chinese community, said he hoped to form an all-Chinese fifth division in the league next season.

And to cope with the extra number of teams, the Union needs more coaches and more referees.

''I would be interested to hear from any expatriates who have had experience in coaching and who would like to become involved with coaching the game to the new Chinese clubs,'' said Simpkin.

''Ideally I would like between 12 and 15 new coaches to go into the clubs. As well as these, I am also looking to increase the number of Chinese referees.

''The majority of the referees now are either in the military or the police and their numbers will go down in the build-up to 1997.'' The new fifth division would be made up of 12 teams playing seven-a-side rugby - a natural stepping stone from touch rugby, which is used as a recruiting ground, to the full-scale tackle rugby played in the top four divisions.


''I am looking to organise some seven-a-side tournaments in July and August and this would be a good starting point for Chinese players who would like to be referees.

''When next season starts, hopefully the Chinese players can play for their own teams in 15-a-side and then referee a seven-a-side game in the fifth division.'' Anyone interested should call George Simpkin on 5716267.