Interview by Liam Poach
The #TundraSummerSeries continues, this week, from the San Diego Legion, we have capped-USA Eagle (#486) and season-standout Ryan Matyas.
Those who are familiar with the world of USA Rugby now that Ryan has been a stalwart presence on many Team USA lineups, that includes 10 XV appearences to go along with 6 7's appearences. He also spent time with the San Diego Breakers in the now-defunct PRO League.
Now, however, he resides with a team that seems to be on the brink of playing championship rugby next season, and may have likely stood a chance to take home the gold (silver?) this year had the playoffs turned out differently. Anyway, you know the drill. Read!
Liam: How important do you consider your time spent playing rugby in your younger years to be in having developed the skills you have today? How important do you consider the development of youth programs here in the United States to be in growing the game?
Ryan: My time playing youth rugby was invaluable, Learning core skills and learning to play the game with respect for my teammates, coaches, referees, and opponents. If we want to compete with The All Blacks, the development of youth programs should be our focus.
Liam: What is it about U. Arizona’s rugby program that makes it consistently crank out top-notch rugby players?
Ryan: They play all the top teams in the country in 15’s and in 7’s, so it gives the boys opportunities to learn and compete and showcase their talents.
Liam: Now that the team has a full season under its belt, how would you describe the locker room culture in San Diego?
Ryan: We have a unique team culture, and have a lot of great guys on our team who are willing to contribute on and off the field.
Liam: More than half the teams in the league finished this season with a losing record. What did it mean to you guys to finish this season with a winning one?
Ryan: Finishing with a winning record was something we can be proud about, but winning the league was our goal and we fell short.
Liam: Was there anything different about the game in which you got the victory over Glendale that allowed you guys to finally crack their code? Do you think you would have been able to do again it had you made it to the Championship?
Ryan: Our win against Glendale at home was a fantastic way to finish the season. That came from sticking to and executing our game plan. I felt that we matched up with them well, and if we had them in the final, it would have been one to watch.
Liam: What’s your opinion on Coach Rob and his training methods?
Ryan: Working with Coach Rob is one of the main reasons I signed with SD and didn’t go overseas. I worked with him at SD-PRO. I really respect the way he views and coaches the game.
Liam: Who’s an uncapped player that you believe deserves a call-up to the National squad?
Ryan: Here are some guys to keep an eye on:
Liam: If you could recruit any player from around the world to San Diego, who would it be?
Ryan: Dane Coles.
Liam: Do you think the Legion will be able to successfully fill the void left in the hearts of San Diego sports fan by the departure of the Chargers?
Ryan: Absolutely, rugby is an inclusive and inviting sport. I have gotten the opportunity to meet so many new fans this year whose first game was a Legion game, and they loved it. The city has been so welcoming and supportive. It’s a match made in heaven.
Liam: Would you rather be a Jedi or a Wizard?
Ryan: Wizard, they can grant wishes. Plus they have cool robes
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Penguin Tundra Sports Blog was created in 2016 by a very bored college student who was obsessed with Rugby and Football. That same college student knew how to write pseudo-intelligently, so what better way to show off than to create a blog. Along your journey though the Tundra's domain, you may come across outlandish opinions, horrible spelling errors, and some shit that is just outright wrong. Well then, you should comment, give my blog more attention, and we will have our day in internet court. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy talking about sports as much as I do.
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