Oakham host Leicester Tigers event
Young players from Oakham and Stamford rugby clubs helped celebrate more than 10 seasons of the Land Rover Premiership Cup by taking part in an event hosted by Leicester Tigers on Sunday.
The Land Rover Premiership Cup, a nationwide series of events, has seen more than 82,000 children take part to date and continues to grow, providing developmental experience for young players to excel in a professionally run environment.
This weekend it was Leicester Tigers’ turn to host their event this season with Oakham Rugby Club the venue with 36 teams strutting their stuff across an under-12 and under-11 festival.
And in the under-11 competition both Oakham and Stamford demonstrated plenty of effort and skill but narrowly missed out on earning a trip to the Gallagher Premiership Final on June 1, where they had the chance to join in parade at half-time plus find out who has won the Junior Land Rover Discovery of The Season award.
Despite seeing that honour go to Melton Mowbray, Stamford's Matteo Cengerle-des-Forges was still proud of his side’s performances.
He said: "It was a good atmosphere and it was nice to play with my friends and to play in a competition.
"I also love the sport, the physicality, the teamwork and playing with all of your friends.”
Participating players at the festival also had the opportunity to meet Leicester Tigers players Dan Cole and Matt Smith who took time out of their schedule to watch the young teams as well as offer some coaching tips between games.
And Cole commented on the importance of grassroots rugby, saying: “It’s great.
"You look at how many kids are here, how many teams are here and how much they’re enjoying rugby - that’s what it’s about.”
Smith added: "This is where Dan and I started and there’s a few good players out there as well.
"We’ve been emphasising the enjoyment for all the young players as well, but I’m sure there’s a few future Leicester Tigers out there.”
Land Rover has heritage in rugby at all levels - from grassroots to elite, sharing and understanding the values at the heart of the game.