Team Mates News - England Rugby
Back in early February 2022 England Rugby visited a morning training session run by Team Mates.....
By 8am on a weekday morning, young players from Hampton Hill Junior School are running out for their rugby training session.
Layered up and with their breath steaming in the winter air, they shout “Ready, ready, ready” and they clearly are more than ready as each week they develop their skills for a Richmond on Thames junior school league and the annual Richmond Schools tournament.
Coaches Tom Rose and Jack Pannett put them through their paces as dog walkers stop to admire the skills and the children’s enjoyment of sport.
“If the ground is frozen, we take a session at school and run through tactics,” says Tom. “But otherwise the boys and girls are there keen to get involved. One or two have some experience of rugby but many have never played before and some of those have real potential.”
Among the new players is Adejowa Adeyemo, who has a great turn of speed and good handling skills. She says “I was surprised at how quickly I learned the rules and became part of a team. Playing sport in the morning is great because it's easier to go into school feeling energised.”
And Hampton Hill Junior School headteacher, Alan Went, added: “The opportunity for children to be offered and to engage in high quality, encouraging and inclusive sport coaching is a key life experience. The opportunities that come with competitive sport are wonderful: a chance to participate, to try to learn new skills, to be challenged, to feel good about yourself, to feel good about others, to win and to lose, to support others and to visit places you haven't visited before (even other schools!) - so much to celebrate.
“Heightened by a sense of loss caused by the impacts of Covid 19, the positive benefits of competitive sport are lifelong and immeasurable.”