NICK MALLETT - 1994 FBRFC 1ST TEAM COACH
In the two years preceding the advent of professional rugby, Nick Mallett was the coach at False Bay.
The club enjoyed great success during this period, which also saw a number of Internationals playing at the club.
Nick contributed a short piece in recognition of our 90th Anniversary.
In 1994 all it took was a phone call, which I received while in France from Rob Van der Valk, for me to accept the False Bay coaching job. I had decided to return to Sa with my young family and we had bought a house about a kilometre from the ground, so the fit was perfect.
I had been a player /coach in France for 9 years and I loved the game. I wanted to continue my involvement in rugby and I could not believe how lucky I was. False Bay had talent and Rob had secured Mike Bayly from Villagers, which was a huge coup for the club. Mike was a great player and captain and more importantly was an outstanding person who set an superb example to all the other players at the club both on and off the field.
My 9 years rugby experience overseas was a huge advantage and I found that SA teams were way behind the rest of the world in both their attacking and defensive structures. It was fairly simple to turn the False Bay team into a decent club side that could, on our day, beat any other club. In 1994 we beat Stellenbosch away by about 6 tries to 2. This convinced the team that they could compete with any other club team. In my two seasons at False Bay, we finished 3rd and 4th in a very competitive league, where the other top clubs often had half a dozen WP contracted players playing for them.
It was a fabulous 2 years. Rob van der Valk was the best rugby administrator I have ever worked with. We continued together at Boland and with the Springboks following our time together at False Bay and Rob was, without a doubt, the main reason for turning False Bay rugby club around. He was a true professional long before any other rugby administrator. When working together, Rob took care of everything ‘off the field’ while I looked after everything ‘on the field’. Without any doubt he did his job better than I did mine (as you can read in Gary Teichmann’s book ! )
Coaching False Bay, kicked off my Professional rugby coaching career. I would never have been appointed to coach Boland, the Springboks or Italy had I not had the experience of coaching ‘The Bay’ first. I will forever be grateful for that and I have a deep sense of gratitude to all the players and the members of False Bay Rugby Club for helping me start my rugby coaching career.
Many thanks to you all. May the club continue to thrive in the ever changing world of professional and amateur rugby.