Academy septet graduate to Wasps first-team

Date: 22 May 2019

Wasps are delighted to confirm that SEVEN Academy players have signed first-team deals ahead of the 2019/20 campaign.

Tom Willis, Gabriel Oghre, Will Porter, Tim Cardall, Callum Sirker, Owain James and Sam Spink have all graduated from the Academy, reinforcing the Club’s intent on bringing through and developing young talent.

The septet have all impressed in the Premiership Rugby Shield for Wasps A while some have gone on to play first-team rugby in the Premiership Rugby Cup in 2018/19.

Willis, Oghre and Porter also all went on to make their Premiership debuts during the 2018/19 campaign, as an exciting crop of talent prepare for their first seasons in the senior set-up.

Wasps Director of Rugby Dai Young said: “We’re thrilled to see these lads come through the system and we’re really pleased with how they’ve performed across the competitions over the last 12 months.

“They’ll now take that next step up to test themselves at a higher level, and to also learn and train regularly alongside more experienced and talented individuals.”

Wasps Academy Manager Jon Pendlebury added: “To have seven Senior Academy players progress into the first-team set-up is a testament to the work that goes on behind the scenes here at Wasps.

“We have some incredible coaching staff with Matt Everard, Andrea Masi and Matt Williams, while the support staff play a key role in preparing these players physically and mentally for the challenges and expectations of a senior professional game environment.

“I have no doubt that we will see more players coming through the system in the coming seasons and hopefully this group will really step up in 2019/20, earn more first-team recognition, and contribute to the success of the Club.”

Wasps 2018/19 Graduates

Tom Willis

  • Back-row
  • 18/01/99 (20)
  • Younger brother of Wasps first-team star Jack
  • Made Premiership debut v Saracens in October 2017, first Premiership start in November 2018 v Northampton Saints
  • Honours: England U18, England U20 - scoring four tries in five appearances at recent Six Nations and also captaining them in final three games
  • Heading to Argentina later this month for World Rugby U20 Championship
  • Made 11 Wasps first-team appearances, six during 2018/19 season
  • Scored maiden Wasps try in November v Northampton in Premiership Rugby Cup
  • Featured six times in Premiership Rugby Shield including one try in 2018/19
  • Named as 2018/19 Academy Player of the Season 

Gabriel Oghre

  • Hooker
  • 25/05/98 (20)
  • Honours: England U20
  • Made Premiership debut this season off the bench against Saracens
  • Featured in nine of Wasps A’s ten matches in the Premiership Rugby Shield, captaining the side on occasions while also crossing for three tries.
  • Six first-team appearances, including three in 2018/19

Will Porter

  • Scrum-half
  • 14/12/98 (20)
  • Honours: England U18
  • Made seven appearances in 2018/19 Premiership Rugby Shield, crossing for two tries – including one stunning length-of-the-field burst again Leicester Tigers A
  • 11 first-team appearances, including seven in 2018/19.
  • Played three times in Premiership as well as making his Heineken Champions Cup bow, playing in back-to-back games against Toulouse during 2018/19 campaign

Tim Cardall

  • Lock
  • 13/01/97 (22)
  • Honours: England Students
  • Played every minute in all ten of Wasps A’s Premiership Rugby Shield games, scoring two tries
  • Has made three first-team appearances, two of which came in this season’s Premiership Rugby Cup
  • Spent time with Nottingham Rugby on dual registration during 2018/19

Callum Sirker

  • Winger
  • 14/05/98 (21)
  • Scored a whopping 11 tries in ten Shield appearances, second top-scorer in the competition to Adam Radwan who had 12
  • Honours: England Sevens
  • Made his Wasps first-team debut this season in Premiership Rugby Cup, his sole appearance to date
  • Spent time with Richmond on dual registration during 2018/19

Owain James

  • Full-back
  • 23/09/96 (22)
  • Eight first-team appearances including two tries
  • Restricted to only two Premiership Rugby Shield and two Premiership Rugby Cup appearances this season due to an ACL injury

Sam Spink

  • Centre
  • 06/10/99 (19)
  • Two first-team appearances
  • Played five Premiership Rugby Shield games during 2018/19, scoring one try, but had opportunities limited this season through injury
  • Honours: England U18, England U20 - earned his first U20 cap in April but an unfortunate ankle knock means he’ll miss this summer’s World Rugby U20 Championship
  • Featured in one game for Nottingham Rugby in 2018/19, scoring one try

Season Memberships for 2019/20 are available by clicking the link below or calling 02476 786411.