Last Friday (28th November) London Irish HITZ ran an intramural TAG rugby tournament for the dancers of Creative Academy in Slough with the support of seven London Irish Academy players. The dancers were put through their paces during a short training session prior to taking each other on in a group based tournament.

The event was a great opportunity for the London Irish HITZ students to have a go at running a tournament and also for the Academy players to utilise their rugby knowledge. London Irish HITZ officer Andrew Arter commented saying: ‘‘The HITZ project is so much more for the students than improving their English and maths, opportunities like this are brilliant for testing the students social skills and their ability to work as a team.

“The event was a complete success for all parties and the standard of rugby that the dancers produced was to an unexpected. The dancers were pushed outside their comfort zone and they certainly enjoyed the input that the Academy players had to the day.’’

There were 15 matches played in the day, which tested the stamina of the dancers. Academy coach Paul Hodgson said: ‘’I couldn’t believe the energy levels that these dancers had, in tough and slippery conditions there enthusiasm never wavered and the Academy lads could certainly learn a thing or two from them.”

Following on from the tournament the Creative Academy dancers were invited to form the Guard of Honour for London Irish’s home game against Gloucester Rugby on Sunday.

George Kirkham, Manager of Creative Academy said. ‘’The TAG rugby day was amazing for the dancers; opportunities like this are brilliant for building a team ethos on the course and I think London Irish won a few fans on the day. It was brilliant that they got the chance to be the guard of honour for the team on Sunday and I know the guys and girls enjoyed their day out.”

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