Vahbiz Bharucha shares her rugby dream for Indian women
On the journey to Rugby World Cup 2019, Societe Generale invited four rugby players around the world to share their passion for rugby on the occasion of the France vs Wales game in Paris during the 2019 Six Nations Fixtures. Among them was Vahbiz Bharucha, India's Women Rugby Captain, who shared her memory of the trip.
Vahbiz: It was a pleasure for me to be invited to attend the France vs Wales Six Nations game at Stade de France by Societe Generale on the 1st of February.
I still remember the iconic Stade de France! On entering the stadium I was stunned by the sheer energy of the stadium. I walked in to an empty stadium but I could hear the roars of people and see the effort of the players! It was the most beautiful experience of my life!
Before the kick-off of the game, I had the opportunity of sharing the floor with legends like Ono Kosei, Thierry Dusautoir and Jonny Wilkinson during an interactive session before the dinner attended by with the guests of Societe Generale. It was a nice experience to be speaking to people from various walks of life and knowing different people's opinions on Rugby! I got an opportunity to Interact with Mr. Frederic Oudea, CEO of Societe Generale and shared my views on Rugby In India!
This event offered me a chance to talk about Rugby in India and how the game is changing lives of so many young children, women and men. Societe Generale India is supporting Rugby at the grassroots and at national and international levels in India. This has helped in so many people realizing their dreams.
Societe Generale is committed to making Rugby accessible to everyone and I hope that together with Rugby India we can help build strong national teams to give the sport a much needed boost and take it to the next level in India. The support to the ‘Get Into Rugby' programme, has helped to reach out to talent at the grassroot level and also helped to build a talented pool of sportspersons for international events. This has resulted in opportunity, equality and empowerment to thousands of young girls and women across India. The women participation in the Get into Rugby program for the 2018 Calendar year stands at 44%. I am sure very soon, we will achieve a 50% women participation in the game.
In fact, today we have many female rugby players hailing from the remotest parts of the country who are celebrated as sports stars, heroines and role models; inspiring many more to follow in their footsteps. And that is the greatest change brought in by rugby in India.The Indian women might be lacking in size compared to their international counterparts, but their skill, speed and big hearts are taking them places beyond their wildest dreams.
I thank the team of Societe Generale in India and in Paris for giving me this opportunity to project Indian Rugby at a global platform.