A dream came true for eight, lucky Eastbourne rugby players when the children from Bede’s Prep were invited to spend a beautiful, sunny October afternoon with the England rugby team.
The England team were at a 3-day training camp and Bede’s were invited across as one of the first schools to register and embrace the new ‘Kids First’ rules which come into operation across all age groups from this season. Shoreham rugby club were also asked to bring eight players along as an example of a local club doing the same thing.
The boys were lured away from their normal Sunday commitments by the promise of some coaching that would be filmed and shown on the RFU website and on the big screens at Twickenham during the Autumn internationals. This will still be the case, but what the boys were not told was that the England team would also be involved in the coaching session. The appearance of the boys’ rugby heroes was deliberately kept as a surprise as the director of filming wanted to capture the boys’ reaction when they discovered who their coaches for the afternoon were going to be.
Sure enough, when the boys were sitting on the grass listening to one of the RFU coaches and were asked to turn around to see who would be joining them for the afternoon, their faces were an absolute picture! Stood behind them were the whole England rugby team!
The afternoon was then spent filming games and drills, taking photographs and two of the boys were even interviewed on film. At the end of the session the boys were free to get autographs, selfies and just chat to the likes of Owen Farrell, Vunipola, Cole, Joseph, Itoje, Kruis, Youngs and the England Captain, Dylan Hartley.
It really was a dream come true for the boys and was a day that will live with them forever.