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Home > News > Manchester student rugby ticking all the boxes
Your News Manchester student rugby ticking all the boxes

STUDENT rugby in Manchester celebrated a very successful, all-embracing event last weekend when the University of Manchester Campus League 10s tournament was held at Broughton Park RFC.

The competition was organised by RFU Student Liaison Officer Chris Townsend and students Darrell Knight and Tara Lee and focused on the players who are not University Senior rugby regulars on Wednesday afternoons, but instead play in the Campus League on Sunday mornings, when they represent their halls, school or faculty.

With 12 teams and over 150 players taking part, the tournament was a huge success from a playing perspective. An important extra dimension, however, which really gave the event added cachet was the fact that the games were refereed by a mixture of student referees, who have completed their Entry Level Refereeing Award course while at university, and Manchester Society officials.

The 'in-house' dimension was also strengthened by the fact that the event was run by a mixture of student volunteers and RFU development staff.

The eventual winners were University of Manchester Barbarians, who beat the Kebab King Crusaders in the Cup final, while Manchester Medics beat Grosvenor Hall in the final of the Plate.

Prime objectives of the day included recruitment for the University Third XV, which, despite the handsome attendance at this event, remains short of numbers, and also catching up with students who will shortly be on the move and relocating to other areas.

The RFU Pathfinder scheme works to provide students with details of the rugby options available to them at their next port of call and to provide them with a point of contact who can make their transition into another playing environment as smooth as possible.

The tournament also provided an opportunity for any would-be coaches and volunteers for next year to speak to RFU staff about how best to start the process, while the task of bringing the Campus League closer to the main club to help retention numbers was also helped by having so many students together and available for discussions.

"It was a very successful event and I'm sure we all got a lot from it," said Chris Townsend: "It also underlined the huge rugby-playing student population and emphasised the need to work closely with them. These young people are the future and the RFU is applying plenty of resources to ensure that we look after them well and make their rugby/student days as enjoyable as possible, whether they are playing, refereeing or contributing to the admin work."

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