Rugby: Matt Williams – Pride!

So Matt Williams begins his Ulster career with a bang. A 38-13 victory over Newport Gwent Dragons, whetting the appetites of the Ravenhill faithful. Afterwards, the new coach, reveals that he has changed little in the Ulster playing structure, apart from the players mentality. Williams has introduced shirt ceremonies, to evoke a sense of pride in wearing the jersey. And he has introduced legends. Beginning with Mike Gibson. Gibson made a speech to the Ulster players about his experiences of representing Ulster.

For a new coach, this is a smart move. It is one thing for an Australian to talk about pride in the Ulster jersey. Quite another for a living legend to do it. The living legend speech, creates an opportunity for key values to be transfered. Transfered from legend to players. So that the players feel what the legend feels. Understand what the legend understands. Respect what the legend respects. Key values updated from the glorious past into the present. Kept alive.

No wonder the Dragons were put to the sword. Ulster had a sixteenth player. The unstoppable force called Pride!

Posted in Rugby Psychology, Sports Psychology Blog.