“During the last few weeks spreading over January and February the Academy has enjoyed wonderful success and performance from the players listed at all three development levels, England Academy Player (EAP), Elite Player Development Group (EPDG) and School of Rugby (SOR).
In the England U16 selection within this squad of 76, London Wasps have 12 players involved, by far the highest of any Academy in the country. These players come from the London Wasps Academy SOR and EPDG groups drawn from Middlesex, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Counties. Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire have maintained their excellent levels of success with the England U16’s now over several years however Middlesex improved dramatically from none last season to 6 this year – 5 of which are registered to London Wasps Academy. The importance of this achievement by Middlesex U16’s has been heightened by reorganised development strategy introduced this year which has coordinated Academy, School, Club and County development programmes to the benefit of the player.
We wish all these players the very best as they look forward to the 4 day camp at Abingdon School over half term where final selections will be made.
Buckinghamshire: Jack Heeney (Lock), Tom Howe (Wing), Zac Maiden (Wing), Luke Morrison (Prop)
Oxfordshire: Tom Kynge (Lock), Peter Moore (Centre), Josh Poole (Openside Flanker)
Middlesex: Mark Makram (Openside Flanker), Alex Lundberg (No.8), Beno Obano (Prop), Louis
Clayton Molloy (Full Back), Archie Faulks (Hooker).
Equally during this period Christian Wade, now returned to fitness, Elliot Daly and Joe Launchbury have represented London Wasps at England U20 level. It was particularly pleasing to see Joe involved having not initially been included within the squad. The performance against Italy was a resounding win and of high quality with Elliot scoring four exceptional tries in the 44 mins before being subbed off due to having played two days previously in Whitgift Schools Daily Mail quarter final win over Plymouth College. We are very fortunate to have some exceptionally talented young players coming through the ranks and showing their ability to train on. Good luck to all these players including Sam Jones, Jack Wallace and Billy Vunipola as they compete for places within the final Junior World Cup squad.
Finally many congratulations to RGS High Wycombe U15’s for their quarter final victory over John Fisher to progress into the semi final stage of the Daily Mail Cup against The Perse School.
Again we have several young players involved at SOR level playing for RGS U15’s and I am sure many will get a chance to play in a London Wasps shirt in the forthcoming Harrow 12-a-side festival on the 1st May. The London Wasps Academy U15 age band is a particularly strong group of players with players involved at SOR and EPDG groups, all the coaches are very excited about the potential of this group of young players.
So lots of positive achievement to date with many challenges coming to a head. Being involved in the final throws of festivals, tournaments and selection processes is very exciting in its own right but the job is to see these challenges through to the end, compete hard and win through. We offer all the support to these young players and families and wish them good luck and most of all make sure they can compete hard enjoy the challenge."
*This piece first appeared in the Wasps matchday programme on, February 27th