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Community Foundation hosts Developmental Festival as Land Rover Cup returns

Bristol Bears Community Foundation hosted an exciting Under-11 and Under-12 grassroots developmental festival this weekend as the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup came back with a bang. 

This successful series of nationwide events, now running for nearly two decades and organised by Land Rover - the official vehicle of Premiership Rugby - has seen more than 100,000 children take part to date, with some realising their dreams of going on to play for Premiership Rugby clubs.

Both age-group competitions - held at Bristol Grammar School and Lockleaze Sports Centre - were fantastic spectacles, providing a meaningful platform for youngsters to develop their rugby skills as normality returns to the UK.

For Clevedon Under-12s star Rafael Franklin, who has experienced a frustrating time away from the pitch, it was a memorable experience as his side finally got back to playing.

Franklin, 12, said: “It was really exciting to be back out at a rugby tournament again after such a long time. There was a great spirit and everyone’s had a really good time.

“We didn’t get a chance to see much of each other during the pandemic so it’s been great to be back together, doing what we love to do best.

“I’ve been playing rugby for as long as I can remember, and my dream is to become a professional. Being back out there has reminded me why that would be so special.”

Keynsham Under-11s star Phoebe Lewis, 10, added: “This was my last tournament with the team before I move onto girls’ rugby, so I was super excited to get out there and give it my all.

“I was introduced to the sport by my brother when I was six and I’ve loved it ever since. I’ve really missed the team spirit and the matchday feeling during the pandemic, so it was great to have that back.

“I’m a big Bristol Bears fan and I’ve watched a lot of their games on TV this season. Hopefully I can go on and play for the Bears women’s team when I’m older.”

With 27 teams in attendance across both venues there were plenty of strong performances on show, with each side displaying fantastic resolve and demonstrating the core values of the game throughout – teamwork, respect, enjoyment, discipline and sportsmanship.

Land Rover ambassador Lewis Moody, who racked up 71 caps for England, added: “The return of the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup across the country is a huge boost for grassroots rugby.

“It is one of the longest standing national series of rugby festivals for Under-11 and Under-12 youngsters and is always a date in the season that clubs look forward to being part of.

“It cannot be underestimated how important these grassroots rugby events are for rugby in the UK. Youngsters will learn vital lessons by playing in these festivals, that will serve them on and off the rugby pitch.

“To date, over 100,000 youngsters have taken part in the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup, with several players going on to play for Premiership Rugby clubs. This shows the pathway these youngsters can take on their rugby journey, thanks to Land Rover’s support of grassroots rugby.”

The Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup is testament to Land Rover’s commitment to supporting rugby at all levels; from grassroots to elite. Follow @LandRoverRugby to discover more. #DiscoverRugby


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