Rugby is a family story – Nirina discovered rugby at the young age of 15. A coach quickly noticed how fast she could run on the field and took her under his wing to teach her all the tricks ! She was still under 18 when she played her first match with the FTMA club, so she resorted to use an older girl’s license. She will play the entire game but the fraud would not go unnoticed and the coach sternly reprimanded her.
The young lady organized her days between work in the morning, training in the afternoon and various house chores in the evening. Tiring but she enjoys it ! She has loads of experience already in her work since she had to drop off school in her 2nd year of primary school.
Rugby was a major disruption in Nirina’s life. Her lifestyle, her personality and even her clothing style were turned upside down ; she adopted a more feminine style while at the same time building her fighting spirit. In 2008, she was selected in the National team of Madagascar. For the occasion she will be wearing her country’s jersey as well as her first pair of rugby boots for the first time in her life. She will be part of this team until 2011, allowing her to travel, in particular to Reunion Island, a place she had always been dreaming to see.
Today aged 34, Nirina continues to play in her favorite club, the JSM (Sports and Youth of Mahamasina) in Antananarivo. She proved to be very skillful and likes playing all the positions. Married and mother of three girls, she enjoys teaching the game to her children.
Prisca (18 years) has been playing at her mom’s side for 3 years now. “Mom gave us her love and her experience with the Makis. We want to continue what she started, take the same route and do even better to honor our family !”
Monica (15 years) is also being introduced to rugby while the youngest, Malala (11 years) and her dad proudly support the rest of the family.
Rugby is a family story ! Completely supported by her husband, Nirina moves mountains to make a change in her daughters’ lifes through rugby. Nobody helps her but rugby gives her the fighting spirit, the desire and the strength ! She saved money, bought a plot and built a house ; so many objectives achieved already and yet so many others to reach !
“I noticed a change of mentality from the players. Some are forgetting the values of rugby but I am here to remind them. Respect for one’s opponent is key, the girls must show a spirit of fairplay and live in brotherhood.”
From now on, Nirina would like to play in the National team again in order to play beside her elder daughter and she doesn’t plan to stop her rugby career before she turns 41 !
Thank you Aina