St Mary’s University, Twickenham and Rugby League Club London Broncos have today officially launched a partnership to enable St Mary’s students to reach both their academic and sporting potential, and provide an educational pathway for London Broncos players that will support recruitment of talented players.
The partnership gives St Mary’s University rugby league players access to one of the top professional rugby league clubs in the country, incorporating joint-training opportunities, access to coaching expertise and facilities. This will strengthen the existing Rugby League Performance programme at St Mary’s.
Andrew Reid-Smith, Director of Sport at St Mary’s commented:
“Sport plays a significant role at St Mary’s and our partnership with London Broncos will help us to enrich the student experience and attract top quality Rugby League players to St Mary’s.”
Lisa Cafferky, Sports Development Manager for Sport at St Mary’s added,
“We are delighted to be working in partnership with London Broncos, who are one of the best Rugby League clubs in the country.
“Our Rugby League Performance squad compete at the highest level of University sport (BUCS premier division) and we look forward to working with London Broncos to enable students to reach both their academic and sporting potential“.
Rob Powell, Head of Youth at London Broncos added,
“We are really pleased to have re-developed the partnership with St Mary’s. There are huge mutual benefits for both organisations, as well as for the wider rugby league community.
“This provides a platform to share player and coaching resources, educational opportunities at the university for our players, and placements for St Mary’s students at our club, and the potential to attract high calibre players to enhance both programmes.”
The partnership will enhance the student experience at St Mary’s through a variety of work placement opportunities, enabling students to gain experience of working in a professional sporting environment.
The University’s branding will feature on London Broncos playing kit and players/coaches from London Broncos will be guest speakers at St Mary’s Open Days.
Sport St Mary’s coordinates an extensive range of facilities and programmes at one of the UK’s premier sports institutions. In addition to supporting 14 degree programmes and over 30 student sports clubs, Sport St Mary’s coordinates the best endurance running programme in the country, provides training camps for international squads and supports participation from grass roots through to elite performance.
London Broncos Rugby League is London’s only professional rugby league team, competing in the nation-wide Kingstone Press Championship, from the club’s base at Trailfinders Sports Club in Ealing.
Emphasis is placed on growing the game – as well as grass roots rugby league – in the south of the country, helped by the club’s scholarship and academy programmes, which develop under 16s and under 19s players who will compete against Super League opposition all around the country.
In 2016, for the second consecutive year, London’s academy rating was upgraded to ‘good’, alongside clubs such as Huddersfield Giants and Castleford Tigers – a testament to the work going on behind the scenes to further improve the programme, providing rugby league players in London with the best possible chance to become Super League players of the future.