Midi Libre decided to highlight the sportsmen and women of the thirty municipalities of the Metropolis. Until December 13, you can find insights into this rich universe, which, if all sports combined, brings together an enormous number of followers. Some are looking for performance, others the fun of moving, but all have their place in our columns! Without, however, aiming for completeness.
“Ziko”, shadow raster, Camargue races light
A three-time winner of the Trophée des As, Zakaria Katif is an inspiration and an inspiration in the arena.
If he doesn’t fall into the magic potion of the Camargue races, we’re not too far from here. The history of Zakaria Katif with the bouvine started early, in the village festivals where we refuse with passion encierro, abrivado and toro-piscine, where we race with cows and bulls.
For this boy from the district of Aiguelongue, in Montpellier, born in a Moroccan family with four children, the adrenaline of the bouvine gradually increased. Meeting a certain Sabri Allouani and his unrivaled record of ten Trophées des As crowns, was a triggering element. “I met him in 2012. He is the most successful and, for me, an absolute reference for his results and for his competitive spirit. He has been a very good friend. He keeps me under his wing. by of teaching me.”
At the age of 16, he enrolled in the Vendargues bullfighting school when he left the banks of the Gérard-Philipe college to join the high school of Mendès-France, in Montpellier, to obtain his professional baccalaureate in electrical engineering.
But mentioning “excellent”, it is against the bulls that he will get it. Now 29 years old, “Ziko”, as he was nicknamed from the cradle, has an impressive record of three Trophées des As (2015, 2019, 2022), a Trophée de l’Avenir (2013) and a host of regional trophies.
However, success never went to the head of this polite boy, who was praised for his manners, his generosity and his humility. “It’s true that I’m shy and reserved. But when you get to know me, I’m rather fake shy”smile of the raseteur.
Awards and the spotlight, however, did not suit him in “Ziko”. Successes, yes. Flashing, no. It is undoubtedly also for this, in addition to its stunning raset, that Zakaria Katif enjoys a very positive image in the middle. It’s not about change. “Making people happy is what motivates me the most”he assured.
However, the boy remains ambitious. A day equal to Sabri Allouani’s prize list? “Everything is possible in life, but…”
Failing to achieve this feat, he hopes to get a little closer to it in 2023. “I want to have another good season, injury free, and try to win a 4th Trophée des As but also the Palme d’Or which I have never won before”.
Ambitions were shown because we asked him to. Otherwise, “Ziko”, who now lives in Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone with his partner and his two children aged 5 and 1 and a half, would probably keep it to himself.
Rugby to xv: Romain Macurdy with the bigs
He will climb, he will climb, Romain Macurdy! International U20 in 2020-2021, the young 3rd line of Montpellier Hérault Rugby is now training with the professional group.
Even better, he has played three Top 14 games as a starter since the start of the season: at Castres, where he is one of Montpellier’s most prominent residents, at Racing and this Saturday, against Stade Français.
But it was at the Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone rugby school that the little Roman, who celebrated his 21st birthday and now reached a height of 2 m, made his first tackles. Villeneuve where his parents live.
Having a father (Michel) who enjoyed Montpellier as a second line position, and a mother (Hélène), who successfully commented on the discipline for France Télévisions, the boy has something to hold on to!
Football: the USV, an unrivaled club
In June 1928, the Union Sportive Villeneuvoise (USV) was officially born. For the record, the club’s first meetings took place at the former disused airfield on the road to Palavas.
Almost a century later, USV maintains its place as a pioneering sports club fully invested in the town. Recently, the senior team has implemented the game vision of their coaches Fabien Cabanes and Mamoudou Sall, but has also benefited from the structuring work put in place in recent years under the leadership of president, Alexandre Perea Amat.
The club stands out by obtaining the FFF Women’s Football School Label (Bronze, 2019-2022) and the Young FFF Crédit Agricole Label (Hope, 2021-2014). With the organization of football courses during the school holidays for the youngest and the setting up of many tournaments for all categories, the USV remains the ancestor and incomparable sports club, which has become the pride of Villeneuve-lès -Maguelone for many years.
Athletics: Nathalie Walfard has substance
Nathalie Walfard discovered the pleasure of pushing her limits by participating in long-distance events (72 km of SaintéLyon, Malta marathon where she finished 1st in her category in 3:29 in 2017).
With the support of some friends, he decided to create the association Courir en solidaire in 2014, to use the united values of sport as a driver of stability, and as a lever to fight all forms of exclusion born of differences . between individuals. , especially those with disabilities.
The association has equipped itself with joëlettes (single-wheeled wheelchairs) for transporting people with reduced mobility. It organizes walks, participates in regional running races (including the Envolez-vous inclusive race in Montpellier), supervises outings with retirement home residents and offers personalized support.
In January 2022, it organized in Villeneuve the Olympic and Paralympic Week initiated by the Ministry of Sports, and since then has continued to invest in events in the Metropolis.
Petanque: Brice Flaissier straight to the point
Falling into the magic potion of pétanque at a young age, Brice Flaissier can show a wonderful record: ten French championships, Hérault champion 2017 head to head, Languedoc-Roussillon league champion 2018 head to head, League champion Occitania 2019 head to rule, champion of Hérault in triplets in 2010 and 2017, but also in the French team that relies on the 22-year-old…: the president of the petanque club, who succeeded his father Claude Parra in 2017 , has a track record as long as his arm, which he is very good.
Brice Flaissier is not only good at pétanque: he has also been vice-champion of the Hérault de Jeu Provençal (doublettes and triplets) and champion of the Hérault en Lyonnaise in 2021. At the age of 33, he is gone. did not finish at a high level: from November 17 to 20, in Palavas, he will compete in the Trophée des Villes that will bring together the best French players.
The strong point: a revitalized rugby school
Yoga, fitness, aqua gym, tennis, horse riding, pétanque…: there is no shortage of sports associations in Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone. Some are even seeing a resurgence of interest.
This is the case of rugby union, whose school, suspended under the old club, is reborn. A new school, therefore, that owes its rebirth to a new team and especially to the impetus given by its president Bruno Marchal and his secretary Virginia Boudet.
“The 80 children from the old school were taken. And the teachers stayed in the new structure”, Bruno Marchal specified. The investment has already paid off: Montpellier Hérault Rugby has indeed acquired five U14 boys (minimals).
A very strong sign. “The idea now is to create links with the surrounding rugby schools so as not to remain isolated, the president added. . The future is here.”
To complete the rugby offer in the town, a leisure section has been created. It now has about thirty members. Rugby is a great start!