Faces of the Pride: Alex Marques
- Name: Alex Marques
- Role: Maputo Rugby Club (MRC) Sports Director and former international player for Portugal
- Based: Maputo, Mozambique
Reflecting on a lifetime of rugby experiences as a player – including for the Portuguese national team – coach and club Sports Director, Alex says that he feels indebted to the game.
“What rugby has given to me is more than I have given to rugby.
Looking back from when I started playing as a teenager to now, I think of all the friends I’ve made and all of the good times I’ve had. I could go on and on about a lot of situations where rugby has built me as a person but, basically, it all comes down to the game’s values. These are what makes rugby so special to me, and to the world.”
After relocating from Portugal to Mozambique – a country where rugby is largely unknown – Alex’s passion inspired him to co-found the Maputo Rugby Club (MRC) with a group of other dedicated volunteers. In just four-and-a-half years, MRC now coaches regularly with around 800 players, ranging from young children to seniors.
For Alex, aspiring to involve more local players and empowering coaches will not only enable MRC to continue to grow, but will ensure rugby creates – and holds – a legacy within Mozambique.
This shared objective with BPF is a key reason why Alex credits the partnership between MRC and Pride members as a success.
“We’ve been working with Bhubesi Pride Foundation since the program first came to Mozambique in 2015. Each year, our coaching weeks and tournament days get bigger and better and, from those events, we see more people getting involved with our club.”
Speaking on behalf of the MRC coaches, Alex says that the Pride’s visit to Maputo is the event of the year.
“Our coaches are very passionate about rugby and what the Pride coaches bring is the experience and knowledge our coaches need to help deliver and express their passion.
I think the relationships we’re able to create between the coaches is something really special. We’re thankful for what Bhubesi Pride Foundation does for rugby in Mozambique.”