Following on from last week’s game between Eastern Rhinos and Medway Dragons, we welcome two more community teams to West London to play each other on the 3G pitches.
The Elmbridge Eagles are a well-established rugby league team, playing in Surrey with the roots of the team starting in 1978 as a school boy team in Walton On Thames.
Their early claim to fame came in September 1980, when the boys were invited to take part in a curtain raiser at Craven Cottage, when the newly formed Fulham RLFC took on Wigan in the first ever fixture. Today’s head coach for Elmbridge Eagles took part in that fixture.
Head coach Graham Belbin told us, “In 2015 the club gained a Sports England Grant to refurbish their dated 1960s clubhouse. There is also future planned development include the playing fields levelled & drained to allow all year usage”.
Their opponents come from the opposite end of the capital from in Brentwood in Essex.
Brentwood Rugby League FC was originally established as Brentwood Elvers RLFC in October 2004, through its two founders Phil Abbott & Tom Greenard. These two school teachers had a real passion for rugby league, and they were keen to grow the sport in Essex, initially starting with teams at under 11s and 13s.
Arran Smith, Brentwood head coach, has this to say, “This season has seen 10 Brentwood players in the London Broncos’ Scholarship squads and others have progressed further into the Academy.
“Two former Eels are now playing in the Championship: London Broncos’ Alex Walker and former Bronco (now Bradford Bulls) Joe Keyes. However, even if players do not reach those dizzy heights, the club now has a clear player pathway, which allows players to play rugby league with us from primary school age, all the way up to adulthood.”
London Broncos continue to help Junior League rugby teams all over London and the South East, and are looking forward to welcoming more and more teams to Trailfinders throughout the season.
Tickets for all three of Sunday’s games can be pre-bought online here.