Per Thomas Larroquette
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A last-minute call and a meeting scheduled for 1:30 p.m. have just postponed the interview. This is everyday life Romain Chabat (33 years old). Three quarters of the center a Angletin National 2, so is it associate director of a custom shoe company named Zatizz and at the head of his own communication box.
Dedicated, joking but also serious, Romain Chabat recalls his Bearnese roots which he proudly defends, his intense rugby career and his activities which he manages in parallel.
Béarn: where it all began
The Pau man started playing rugby at the age of seven Morlaas. Always well supervised with dedicated volunteers, Romain Chabat knows the departmental selections and is detected by the Peace Section. He rose in level and made his final season with the “elite” Espoirs de Pau. But the boy does not skip the steps. The former midfielder who became central when he was a cadet, returns to the side of Morlaas and plays his first season in Seniors at Federal.
“I never thought, dreamed, imagined being a professional rugby player. Do you live off rugby? No way. Basically I am passionate about cycling. I made the selection for the Pyrénées-Atlantiques where I played with Camille Lopez. I didn’t do the Espoirs pole in Baiona either … Then we favored the big ones, which I understand ”. In terms of studies, Romain Chabat studied DUT Communication / Events in Tarbes before doing a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Toulouse, still in communication. Enough to almost ensure a conversion …
Angoulême, the true love story
Romain Chabat is also very close to his lifelong friend, Sebastien Laulhe. The third line evolved with him in Morlaàs, Pau and later Angouleme. The latter, still Dangerousthey contacted him and let him know that he would join Angoulême, Federal 2, with a big project underway. “There would be a full-time squad, the players could make a living from rugby, I told myself I had nothing to lose. I get there, and the first season, we won our 25 games. In the end, there is this incredible rise to Federal 1 ”. Then everything went very fast for the Soyaux-Angoulême club. “For my first game, there were 400 people. For the climbing match, we were 4000! It changed a lot of things. ”
During the first season in the anteroom of the Pro D2the Charentais climbed to the quarterfinals and narrowly lost to the ogre of the championship: Nevers. Chabat and his teammates forge a strong relationship on and off the field. The following year it became the consecration of the Angoumoisin club. “We didn’t lose, we won the Bourg-en-Bresse and we went up. It was fine. In Pro D2, we were even fifth in December for the first season. We are navigating a crazy dynamic! ”
I fully understand that right now some players who are isolated or don’t have their entourage by their side can easily get burned.
“When the mind is no longer there …”
In Angoulême, Romain Chabat is not just a player. He sets up his communication company and manages the communication of the club in which he evolves. He is also the one who launches the social networks of SA XV, which manages the pre-match posters as well as the programs delicately placed in the seats of the Chanzy stadium. As for rugby, physical mistakes happen while the club fights Pro D2.
“My partner, my family and my job have kept my head out of the water. I fully understand that right now some players who are isolated or don’t have their entourage by their side can burn out very easily. Especially for guys like me who work very mentally, emotionally and emotionally … When the mind is no longer there, it immediately gets complicated … ”. Despite a year of optional contract, Romain Chabat leaves Soyaux-Angoulême in agreement with the leaders and embarks on a new adventure.
Anglet: the perfect place to carry out your activities
The purple and white jersey is already tidy in the locker room. A little further south, Romain Chabat receives a call from the English club in the Basque Country. “It’s a family club, where everyone is amateur and ambitious at their level. I chose the magnificent living environment, the family balance but also and it was above all the time to develop my professional activities. Anglet allowed me to always have a foot in my passion at a very good level, it relieved me of this pressure of the result, of the media pressure, it gave me time. My days are full, but the work / passion balance, I found it a lot. In the evening, I can cut with rugby and forget about everything ”.
Since 2018, Romain Chabat plays for the “Angloys”, who was joined a little later by his best friend Sébastien Laulhé. A few weeks ago, in May 2022, his team could have joined National 2 but was defeated by the Arcachon Bay (promotion finally acquired, after the desertion of a club). At 33, the three-quarter center “feels good,” and continues to have fun on the turf.
Associate Director of a Custom Slippers Company
Work, mood and human relationships, these are the three key words of the Bearnese. Anyone who didn’t look like a professional rugby player as a child knows the concept of work. “Before coming to Angoulême I was working. I knew what real life was like, having a head, making a living. I didn’t fall out of my little dream. It is a must for young people, the place of professional rugby is a privileged place. It is a passion that can stop very quickly. I recommend that they prepare for the consequences and above all that they enjoy ”.
Then, the thirty-year-old met a former classmate of the DUT of Tarbes. The latter tells him that he wants to set up his own company of custom espadrilles and asks Chabat to offer them to his Anglet club. “I tell him, of course! I’ll propose to Anglet but also to Angoulême, Morlaàs and then Pau! And that’s how we threw the box. Zatizzthe company based in the Basque Country and purely local, offers espadrilles for all tastes, both for individuals and for clubs, associations or events.
“I’m sorry, if you never work and wait, nothing will come of it. I have always been demanding, work is the basis. In the corporate world, if you want contracts, to negotiate, work will allow you to. You need a mood, you have to be blameless. You can’t be everyone’s friend, but you should never close the doors. Human relationships are the basis of everything. I love sharing and transmitting, “he saysRugby news.
Espadrilles export well! TheOlympic Games in Marseillethe FC Nantes or the recent champions of Top 14the MHR, have their sneakers. Through his communication mailbox, Romain Chabat already has experience commenting on the radio and presents, from this year, a pre-match program for the Lannemezan club (Fédérale 1). Still not ready to stop rugby, the Bearnais continues with a busy schedule and is having a good time with his partner Amélie and his little Júlia, 4 years old.
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