Bognor rugby players delighted to get back into action
Rugby action has returned to Hampshire Avenue
Last Saturday saw a social Festival of Rugby at Bognor RFC, with club teams challenging each other using the RFU Return to Rugby framework.
Some 60 senior players took each other on in a feast of permitted sporting brilliance under tight Covid-secure RFU regulations to raise much needed funds for the club and to have a great day out at the same time.
On a typically wet and windy ‘rugby weather’ day, teams of Bognor RFC players aged from 17 to one who has just turned 60, Phil ‘Turbo’ Teasdale, arrived at the club for the tournament.
Over a series of shortened matches they saw another birthday boy, 18-year-old Jamie Foote lead his Green Team to victory.
However rugby and Bognor RFC were the real winners of a day which allowed the whole of Bognor RFC’s senior section to enjoy a return to some form of sporting normality.
The return to rugby is initially through non-contact sport focused on Ready4Rugby, a non-contact game, enabling two teams of up to 10 players to engage in training and match activity in their own club environment.
In developing their action plan, the RFU were required to undertake a detailed assessment of exposure risk through face-to-face contact across both contact and non-contact rugby.
First XV coach Karl Flinn said: “We know that players are eager to get back to playing team rugby and while we recognise that there will be some disappointment that the 15-a-side contact game cannot yet return, player welfare and safety is paramount and we must continue to manage risk appropriately.
“Marie O’Connor has been instrumental in this process and her medical expertise has been invaluable in enabling Bognor RFC’s return to permitted activity, both on the pitch and off.
“The reaction of our players over the past few months has been amazing. We are now delighted that they will be able to put some effort back into getting game-based rugby activity under way.”
Bognor hosted the firm who will be their gold sponsor for the next two years, Heat Load Ltd, as a thank you for their valuable support during these difficult times.
Their two other sponsors, Rainbows Parlours and Signature Home Improvements, were also present.
Bognor RFC vice-chairman Doug Millen said: “Their financial support is a fantastic help to us during this period of especially difficult times for both grass-roots rugby and businesses. Their physical and financial assistance is hugely appreciated.”
* Players of all ages – boys, girls, men and women – are always welcome at Bognor RFC. Contact them on email at [email protected] or see their website.