Haywards Heath Rugby Club secure trip to Twickenham thanks to display in cup
Haywards Heath RFC have secured a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Twickenham alongside their Gallagher Premiership Rugby heroes thanks to their performance at the weekend’s Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup.
More than 85,000 children have taken part in the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup to date, with Haywards Heath the latest team to make their mark on the nationwide event which is celebrating its 12th season.
Harlequins played host at Staines RFC on Saturday, with more than 30 teams showing off their skills across an under-12 and under-11 festival.
And in the under-11 competition Haywards Heath were rewarded for their effort and skill with a trip to the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Final at Twickenham on June 20.
There they will meet a Land Rover rugby ambassador, join in a Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup parade at half-time, plus find out who has won the Junior Land Rover Discovery of The Season award.
Oliver Godden, from Haywards Heath, was excited to be there on the day and thanked Quins for giving him a special day at Rugby HQ to look forward to.
He said: “This has been a great tournament and a lot fun and I am really happy that as a team we played very well and will get to go to the final at Twickenham.
"Rugby is a really enjoyable sport, everyone gets along, and it’s helped me make a lot of new friends.
“To be playing here after watching the World Cup and seeing how England beat New Zealand is special and I hope to see some of us representing our country one day.”
Participating players at the festival also had the opportunity to meet Harlequins players Archie White, Phil Swainston and Jack Musk, who took time out of their schedule to watch the young teams as well as offer some coaching tips between games.
Back-rower White commented on the importance of grassroots rugby, helping to provide developmental experience for young players to excel in a professionally run environment.
And back-rower White was delighted with what he saw, saying: “It’s great to have been able to witness just how much the kids loved being out there and the camaraderie on show was brilliant.
“Being able to give back to the community is great for me because rugby doesn’t work without the grassroots and it’s where all of us professionals started out.
“It’s great to be able to give kids these sorts of opportunities and help inspire them to continue playing rugby at any level they want.
“It’s also been amazing to see how inclusive and accessible the tournament was – with girls and boys playing together – and I think that shows just how impressive the initiative is.”
Land Rover has heritage in rugby at all levels; from grassroots to elite, sharing and understanding the values at the heart of the game. Follow @LandRoverRugby