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AASE league kicks off today

Henley College kick off their third season in the RFU AASE League this Wednesday with a match at home against Truro, KO 3:00pm.

The team have enjoyed great success in the past two seasons reaching the Championship Final in their first year in the competition and the Plate Final last season.

The AASE League is contested by Schools and Colleges affiliated to Premiership Academies. For example, where Henley College represents London Wasps, Oaklands College represents Saracens. There are 12 Colleges in the Competition, split into a Northern and Southern Pool. After playing each other home and away, the pool winners and runners up progress into the play offs in March.

The strength of the AASE competition was underlined by England U20’s success in the Junior World Cup, with half of the squad having previously attended AASE Colleges, including Alec Hepburn who has subsequently gone on to make his London Wasps first team debut in the pre-season game with London Irish.

Other Senior Academy players to have recently graduated from the Wasps AASE programme include Liam O’Neill, George Eastwell & Oscar Hirsky-Douglas who represented the club in the JP Morgan 7s during the summer.

Whilst these players were rewarded with contracts other very talented players who have just completed their studies at the College will continue their rugby careers at Universities such as Bath and Cardiff or at clubs that include Bedford, Ampthill, Henley and Redingensians. The Club looks forward to following their progress and wish them all the best for the future.

This season Henley College will be a relatively young side with only one third of the squad remaining from last year. Playing established school teams such as Hartpury and Ivybridge is a huge step up in tempo and physicality compared with anything the boys might have experienced at U16, hence the team will need time to gel and the 1st year boys will need time to adapt.

However with a very talented and committed squad that has just completed four weeks of strenuous pre-season training the players and coaching staff are looking forward to the new season with optimism and great excitement.