For Chilean coaches, “No one, except us, believed it was possible.”

“We had very few chances to qualify. No one believed it was possible except us,” explains in an interview with Chilean coach AFP Pablo Lemoine. play off.

What inspires you with this Chilean historic qualification?
Pablo Remoine: “It’s huge because there were few chances to qualify. No one, except us, believed it was possible. Three years ago, there was nothing in Chilean rugby. National team There was no team.

After losing one point (21-22) at home in the first leg of the playoffs, he won two points on his return to the United States (31-29). Is this qualification a bit like David vs. Goliath?
“Completely, especially after learning that the United States will host the 2031 World Cup in qualifying. During the match there, World Rugby chiefs, authorities and beautiful people attended the qualifying and placed eight people-World. An annual plan to prepare for the cup. I felt that way. “

What are the main characteristics of your player?
“There are three-quarters and two-thirds lines from Rugby Sevens. Prior to 2018, VII was the only program that worked in Chile. All the best players did it, it’s international. It was the only way to play at the level. Chileans like to attack and like to attack a lot. He likes to hold the ball in his hand and play + 1 to 1+. Many come from English schools with lots of play and fighting, they are good at it. They train 6 months a year in their franchise (Selkunam, editor’s note), which helps us a lot. They have a professional D2 level, but there are people like Rodrigo Fernandez (of the opener) who can play in the top 14.

Unlike your country, Uruguay, which qualified in 2015, Chile has a real rugby development project …
“Mainly thanks to the economy. Uruguay’s market is small, there is no national support or sports policy. Chile has many international + clubs +, gold mines full of wealth around rugby, There has never been a serious project with the Chilean federation, where it was supported by the Ministry of Sport and the Olympic Commission. Rugby is a long-term project underway in the federation and into football. I’m sure it will be the second sport after (…) We worked, it changed at a tremendous speed. We were invited to various places, had an international window, and There is money to prepare and there are many things that happen suddenly. Qualification is a visible part, but it is also the easiest. “

During this Mondial in France, you will find your Argentinean neighbor …
“It’s the first time two South American teams have faced each other at the World Cup. It’s great. Argentina was the driving force behind South American rugby. It’s been 12 years since Pumas played against us. Usually we Will play against their B team. In France, this is the last match (chicken, editor’s note) and the end of a beautiful story at this tournament. I hope to be a competitive team. Even though I knew it was difficult and the match was very difficult, I couldn’t admit that the team wasn’t performing well. For Chile, it would be an extraordinary showcase. The positive image of that rugby. It’s up to us to give.