THE West of England Lionhearts representative side has been launched to give players in the league an opportunity to play at a higher level. The West of England Lionhearts are a squad made up of players from all clubs in our league, and is a positive intervention for the player development pathway and should aid in the development of players who have aspirations in playing Rugby League professionally to bridge the gap in standards, but also give players the opportunity to play at a higher level. All clubs in the league were asked to nominate 5 players from different position for the initial training/trial session.
The trial was held at Corsham RU club on the afternoon of Sunday 14th August 2016, and two fixtures have been organised the first of which is on Saturday 3rd September 2016 at Corsham RU, 2.30pm kick off against South Wales Scorpions Development side, a semi-professional outfit including registered players. After converting to Rugby League last season with the Romans, half-back cum hooker Huw Parks has made a successful step up to the Scorpions development side getting some excellent reviews while also dual registering with the Romans this season. The second fixture for the representative side will be away in Wales at Blackwood RFC on Sunday 25th September, against Wales Presidents select 13. The management team are also planning a tour abroad in 2017.
Chris Chatten, Bath & Wiltshire Romans RLFC, Chairman & West of England Lionhearts Squad Manager, said: “If you do have aspirations to play professionally, Huw is an example that you can get noticed playing for the Romans and get into a professional Rugby League clubs pathway, but the West of England squad gives players the added opportunity to impress at a higher level.”
The Romans nominated the following players Chris Barter a wing cum full back who has impressed in his first season of Rugby League converting from Devizes RU, Tom Plance a hooker who has also featured for the Romans at half back who is a Scotland Student international and University of Bath Broncos player originates from Exeter, Matthew Bodey who has featured for the Romans at half back and hooker this season a student at Swansea University, working in Bath for his year in industry, Tom Culshaw who has played for a number of union clubs in the area and has improved his league game this season playing in the second row after joining the club in the 2015 debut season, and Ryan Willcox who has featured in nearly every position in the pack this season after joining the club in pre -eason, becoming one of the leaders in the team after signing from Colerne RFC.
Chatten, encouraged interested parties who would like to play Rugby League in the Bath & Wiltshire area to contact him on Tel: 07810 552196, email: email@example.com or via the clubs social media. Twitter: @RomansRLFC or Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/romansRLFC.