“This double hat was tricky to manage, he reveals. As a coach, you have to put exercises in place and be around to watch and be able to modify things. But when you are a player, you have to do part of the exercise to continue to have sensations and maintain yourself physically. This year, I really decided to switch. “A role that the native of Landes takes very seriously today, and well beyond the field.
“It’s hard work,” he continues. In the amateur divisions, we did not ask for a very substantial staff, so we have to take care of a lot of things and not just ask the sportsman. Player management, recruitment, link with managers and presidents. You don’t realize when you’re a player.
In search of a compromise so as not to completely stop rugby after the Covid, Mathieu Ospital began to think about a potential coaching role. “As a player, I already liked to think about strategy and try to understand the game,” he describes. The opportunity then presented itself when three years ago, Frédéric Bétille and Jean-Claude Dupont, coaches of the first, offered him to take care of the B team while pursuing his career as a player. The scrum-half jumped at the chance!
It must be said that his attachment to the SMRC is special. Arrived in 2010, he will begin his eleventh season with the Yellow and Black, he who previously passed by the US Tyrosse, the France team under 18, Aviron Bayonnais and the hopes of Dax. At 35, Mathieu Ospital has decided to remain faithful to the club and to train, since he passed his first diploma last year: the Federal Optimization Certificate. The idea of going further runs through his head: “I think about it from time to time. I know it takes time and I have to think about whether I really want to switch to that part for good. »
If the start of the Poudriers season in Fédérale 1 is for the moment far from expectations, they could keep on the experience of their coach who knows the specificities of this division well. “We realize that we have less margin than last year, analyzes Mathieu Ospital. We see at the start of the season that you have to score all the points you can. We can no longer afford to miss opportunities, as could happen last year against weaker teams. »
The revolt will therefore be expected this Sunday at the Monseau stadium, especially since the Saint-Médardais will abolish a well-known bastion of French rugby: the Stade Bagnérais Rugby. “It’s a strong team, with a good package of forwards. It’s up to us to try to find solutions to counter them and make them successful, ”the back lines coach, waiting to win a first victory in Federal 1 under his new cap.