rugby National Saga 1: Bourg-en-Bresse aims for direct promotion to Pro D2

Bourg-en-Bresse are aiming for a direct move to Pro D2 this season. (©USBPA Rugby)

Every day and until next week, Rugby news offers you a saga dedicated to the clubs of National 1. Today detour for the Ain a Bourg-en-Bresse. Although last season ended in failure, the USPA will be looking to get off to a good start this season at a level they know very well.

In fact, the manager’s team Fabrice Estebanez arrived last season has already won this championship during his comeback Pro D2 in 2021. But unfortunately for the Ain players, the lift returned to the ground floor but the summer healed the wounds of the group according to their captain Loic Baradel : “I find the group motivated to move forward because it is true that it is never easy to experience relegation, especially when you play like this at the last moment. We are very motivated to move forward. Everyone has digested and cashed in at the end of the season during the holidays to leave and hit the ground running. »

A big shift in the workforce

And to get back on the ground floor, a lot is changing for cribs this season. No less than 24 players left the USPA and I like it no less Hingano, Camping where avenue to recite none but them. Executives who had experienced promotion two years ago to Pro D2 during the final win against Narbonne (26-16). But, despite everything, the newcomers bring a little more: “There is a rotation in the team, there have been many departures and arrivals. All this freshness is coming. »

Remembering two years ago

For the captain of the Bressanne team, his troops still have experience and it is a good thing to have met theintensity of the National : “We know that this National 1 championship is tight. It’s complicated every weekend. It is true that the danger for a team that comes down from Pro D2 and has never experienced this level is to say that there is room. But not really there is no room for maneuver. In Nacional 1, if we do not put as much intensity as in Pro D2 and if we are not precise in the details, we pay for it. So yes, I think the experience we had two years ago in this first year of National should and should serve us. »

The manager of Bressan Fabrice Estebanez he does not hide it, he does not want to stay at this level of French rugby for more than a year and aims during the regular phase for one of the first two places synonymous with a semi-final at home that would open a royal path. in the final and therefore access to Pro D2. And we must not miss the shooting window because it is this season that the National 1 will offer two direct entries to the Pro D2 before moving to a play-off system for the loser of the final against the 15th in the second division.

Redo the basics

To start on the right foot, Estebanez has built around him a more extensive squad with the arrivals especially of the former international mainstay (2 selections) Julien Brugnaut as a coach of the forwards and also of Jonathan Wisniewski as a stitch consultant. What to oversee a team that will need reassurance after last season’s relegation. A squad that already contributes daily: “The club decided to make a squad change last year during the season. It is a different policy with different qualities. Today, we cannot take away from our staff the fact that they have high-level experience, that they know high-level expectations and must bring us this rigor day in and day out. »

Julien Brugnaut (forward coach) and Jonathan Wizniewski (football advisor) bolster the USPA squad.
Julien Brugnaut (forward coach) and Jonathan Wisniewski (football advisor) bolster the USPA squad. (©USBPA Rugby)

Three axes to recover

To better recover, the club is based on three pillars. The first: Reconquer Ain country, meaning trusting players and staff who remain at the club despite relegation when they arrived recently. The second pillar corresponds to a team driving the project with players who will live at least their 4th season in Bourg-en-Bresse with a special mention for Quentin Drancourt of which it will be 14th season to USBPA. A beautiful symbol of longevity for this club-trained player.

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Precisely the third pillar is based on effective training with many young people who integrate the rotation in the first team in order to come and help the team achieve its goals. A training symbol of the Burgian club that Loïc Baradel is proud of: “I was in the place of these young people not long ago and suddenly I am happy to see them there ready to cross all opportunities and we know how difficult it is sometimes it can be being young, carrying the shields without being considered. Today the club trusts them and makes them understand and at the moment I see that the youngsters are doing well and they are amazing.”

The Bressanones, therefore, will want to repeat their performance of two years ago when they went up to Pro D2, pocketing the national title at the same time…

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