# | The final of the King’s returns to Valencia: “It is an ideal place for the development of this sport”

# | The final of the King’s returns to Valencia: “It is an ideal place for the development of this sport”
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VALENCIA. The King’s final returns to Valencia six years later. It will be this coming Saturday at night (at 9pm) on the same stage as 2018, the City of Valencia, but with nuances. Now it is the Valencian club Les Abellesthe only team from the Community in the highest category of national rugby, who co-organizes the final with the Spanish Rugby Federation (FER), whose president has since changed. The Valladolid Juan Carlos Martin Sanchezpopularly known as hansenhas presided over the FER since 2021 and will sit in the authorities’ box at the stadium in the Orriols neighborhood to witness one of the best matches that can be seen in Spain in this discipline: “Valencia has a large rugby community and it is going up“says the president in Plaza.

For Hansen, Valencia hosting the final again is “great news”, especially when a club like the bumblebee ventures into the organization, which does not compete in the final but at the same time has achieved the best result in its history this season. -Accessed the quarterfinals of the playoff for the title after qualifying eighth overall in the Honor Division men’s team and has the women’s team struggling to return to the elite. “That courage to organize the final shows the desire there is in Les Abelles, this is the way to get more resources and more fans for rugby“says the top leader of the FER. Meanwhile, the president of Les Abelles, Antonio Marquezbelieves that hosting the final is “a great responsibility because it is one of the matches with the greatest impact in Spanish rugby“.

For both leaders, the city of Valencia represents an ideal soil for the practice of rugby… and for its evolution. For what is this? “To its great clubs since, in addition to the good climate, it has a supportive environment, with the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation, with the City Council in mind and also with the institutions,” says Juan Carlos Martín. “I remember when I played in the Honor Division, 30 years ago, that one of the toughest places where I played was Valencia. There was a time when, in rugby terms, the city was at a bit of an impasse, and now it is in a hatching phase“, Add.

And not only has Les Abelles achieved a historic result, but the La Vila Rugby Clubfrom Villajoyosa, is in the final for promotion – they will play against Las Rozas – and has a double opportunity before them to add to the rugby of the Esports Community a new top-level national team. Even in the women’s section, “Valencia pulls hard,” admits Hansen, who also explains that In Valencian territory there is an ecosystem favorable to the growth of the discipline: “The work of the territorial federation, the national under-20 categories, inclusive rugby, rugby at the base… There are many lines of work and the Cup is like the culmination“.

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A first class setting

Furthermore, the focuses of City of Valencia They will once again light up the grand rugby cup final. He already did it in 2018 and now the renovated stadium Levante Sports will re-lay its grass for the celebration of the event. “It is a stadium that gives the event even greater relevance“says Márquez. For Hansen, it is “a magnificent field” to play rugby: “It is one of the stadiums we are looking for, with just over 20,000 spectatorsbecause one of 60,000 would be too big for us. The Ciutat has the ideal size. And on top of that, it’s a top course in a city with a large population. Everyone likes to go to Valencia“.

Of the slightly more than 24,000 seats that the granota coliseum has, The president of Les Abelles is committed to reaching 12,000 spectators. That is, reaching the middle inning. For Juan Carlos Martín The objective is to exceed the 18,000 that, remember, attended the last final held on Valencian soil.. It is worth remembering that the two finalist teams, the VRAC of Valladolid and the Burgos, they will leave Castilla y León to reach the city of Turia, and it is not a short journey. Even so, In the surroundings of the stadium there will be activity from 12 noonwith all a fanzone for the great Spanish rugby festival: food trucks, shops with merchandising, music, bars… A complete party. “I call on Valencians to see a show that is not easy to have, because There are many cities fighting to host the Rugby Cup final“.

Returning to the scene, the Ciutat is approaching one of the objectives that the FER has pursued since Hansen took over from Alfonso Feijoo in office: build a national stadium for Spanish rugby. Let the National Team have its own house. “Spain lacks a national stadium, although we are committed to bringing rugby to different cities. We have organized the European Cup finals in Badajoz, we have been in Torrelavega, we are taking the team to different parts of the country… and that is good,” comments the president of the Federation. However, Hansen is convinced that that matches like this Saturday have to be held in large stadiums: “The next European Cup final will be in Bilbao and we want to fill San Mamés,” he says.

Meanwhile, he hopes that the one that will be played in a few days will be a success at an organizational level, but also on the grass. VRAC and Burgos “are two great teams that know each other a lot“, he remembers. And it is a regional between two entities that, today, are the two largest in national rugby. A Barça-Madrid of discipline. Burgos has not yet placed any Copa del Rey in its showcases and lost the final last year against the same rival it will face this Saturday. VRAC lived an incontestable hegemony, but the people from Burgos have appeared triumphant in the at the beginning of the season and, a few weeks ago, finishing first in the regular league. The playoffs are ahead and the battle promises: “Anything can happen, it’s going to be an interesting and nice game to watch because there is no clear difference. It’s good for Spanish rugby that there is alternation,” Hansen concludes. Tickets can be purchased on the Levante ticketing portal and at the box office until the day of the final.

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