By Thomas Larroquette
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A last minute call and a scheduled meeting at 13.30 just postponed the interview. This is everyday Romain Chabat (33 years). Three-quarters center to Anglein National 2 he is too associate director of a specially designed sneaker company appointed Zatizz and at the head of its own communication box.
Dedicated, a joker but also serious, Romain Chabat looks back on his Béarn roots, which he defends with pride, his intense rugby career and his activities, which he manages alongside.
Béarn: where it all began
The native Pau started playing rugby at the age of 7 Morlaas. Always well supervised with dedicated volunteers, Romain Chabat knows the department choices and is seen by Pau Section. He rose through the ranks and made his final season with the “elite” Espoirs of Pau. But the boy does not skip the steps. The ex-scrum half who became center when he was a cadet is returning to the side Morlaas and playing his first season in the Seniors in Federal.
“I never thought, dreamed, imagined being a professional rugby player. Living by rugby? No way. I was passionate about cycling at the base. I made the Pyrénées-Atlantiques selection where I played with Camille Lopez. I did not do Espoirs either. the pole in Bayonne … At that time we favored the big guys, which I understand. ”In terms of studies, Romain Chabat completed a DUT Communication / events in Tarbes, before taking a license and a master’s degree in Toulouse, still in communication. almost to ensure a conversion …
Angoulême, the true love story
Romain Chabat is also very attached to his lifelong friend, Sebastien Laulhe. The third line developed with him in Morlaàs, in Pau and later in Angouleme. The last one, still Perigueuxcontacted him and told him that he would join Angoulême, Federal 2, with a large project in place. “There was going to be a full-time staff, the players could make a living from rugby, I told myself I had nothing to lose. I arrive there and the first season we win our 25 matches. Finally, there is this incredible increase in Federal 1 ”. Everything then goes very fast for the Soyaux-Angoulême club. “For my first match, there were 400 people. For the climbing match we were 4000! It changed a lot of things. ”
During the first season in the antechamber Pro D2Charentais climbed into the quarterfinals and narrowly lost to the championship troll: Nevers. Chabat and his teammates create a strong relationship on and off the field. The following year will be the inauguration of the Angoumoisin Club. “We did not miss, we beat Bourg-en-Bresse and we go up. It was good. In Pro D2 we were even number five in December for the first season. We are surfing on an insane dynamic!”.
I fully understand that in these moments, some players who are isolated or do not have their entourage by their side can easily burn out.
“When the mind is no longer there …”
In Angoulême, Romain Chabat is not just a player. He launches his communications company and manages the communications of the club he develops in. It is also he who launches SA XV’s social network, which manages the post-match posters as well as the programs, which are nicely placed on the seats at Chanzy Stadium. In terms of rugby, physical mistakes follow one another while the club fights in Pro D2.
“My partner, my family and my job have kept their heads above water. I fully understand that in these moments, some players who are isolated or do not have their entourage by their side can very easily burn out. Especially for boys like me who work very mentally, emotionally and emotionally … When the mental is no longer there, it immediately becomes complicated … ”. Despite an optional contract year, Romain Chabat leaves Soyaux-Angoulême by mutual agreement with the leaders and embarks on a new adventure.
Anglet: the perfect place to develop your activities
The purple and white sweater has now been cleaned up in the locker room. A little further south, Romain Chabat receives a call from the Anglet club in the Basque Country. “It is a family club where everyone is amateur and ambitious at their level. I chose the magnificent living environment, the family balance, but also, and above all, it was the time to develop my professional activities. Anglet always allowed me to have a foot in my passion at a very good level, it relieved me of this pressure of the result, of the media pressure, it gave me time. My days are full, but the balance between work and passion, I really found it. In the evening I can cut rugby and forget everything ”.
Since 2018, Romain Chabat has played for “Angloys”, a little later with his best friend Sébastien Laulhé. A few weeks ago, in May 2022, his team could have joined National 2, but was defeated by Arcachon Bay (promotion finally acquired, after leaving a club). At 33 o’clock, the three-quarter center “feels good”, and continues to enjoy itself on the lawns.
Associate Director of a Custom Sneaker Company
Work, state of mind and human relations, these are Béarnais’ three key words. He who did not see himself as a professional rugby player when he was younger knows the concept of work. “Before I arrived in Angoulême, I worked. I knew what real life was like, having a boss, earning a living. I did not fall out of my little dream. It is important for young people, the place of professional rugby is a privileged place. It is a passion that can stop very quickly. I recommend that they prepare for the aftermath and above all enjoy it ”.
The young 30-year-old then met a former classmate from DUT in Tarbes. The latter explains to him that he wants to set up his company with personal espadrilles and asks Chabat to offer them to his Anglet club. “I say it to him, of course! I want free to Anglet, but also to Angoulême, to Morlaàs and then to Pau! And that was how we launched the box. ZatizzThe company, based in the Basque Country and purely local, offers espadrilles for all tastes, as much for private individuals as for clubs, associations or events.
“I feel that if you never work and wait, nothing will come to you. I have always been demanding, work is the foundation. In business, if you want contracts, to negotiate, the job will allow you. You need “For a state of mind, you must be impeccable. You can not be friends with everyone, but you must never close doors. Human relationships are the basis of everything. I love to share and transfer”, he supportsRugby news.
Espadrilles export well! L ‘Marseille Olympicsthat FC Nantes or the recent masters of Top 14that MHR, have their sneakers. Through his communication box, Romain Chabat has already had experience commenting on the radio and has since this year presented a pre-match program for the Lannemezan club (Fédérale 1). Béarnais is not yet ready to stop playing rugby, but they still have a busy day and enjoy the good time with their partner Amélie and their little Julia at 4 years old.
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