Jacob Ogden has had a busy six months for someone at such a young age. Being signed for the first team on his maiden full time contract and being called up for the pre World Cup friendly, against France, by the Jamaican Rugby League Association.
But, with the academy trials just around the corner we asked the young winger how he had started and what it meant to come through the London system.
“I started at a team called “Midland Hurricanes” which was a part of the Midlands regional set up. We would play against all the Super League teams and hope to get spotted by their scouts who watched us play. I played in a game against a college side and we sent the video down to London Broncos to take a look at and luckily they liked three of us from that game. They invited us down to an initial one week trial and then we returned home to wait to see how we had done. Well, the call came in and I was down in London again this time on a three month trial. We played some games while here and from that I was offered my place within the London Academy system.”
We asked Jacob what his advice would be the young players looking to come down on December 10th.
“I would tell them to come down and just go for it. Be strong, focused and just show the coaching team what they can do. Even if you think you are not good enough just let the guys here at Broncos make that decision. All in all just be the best you can be on the day and who knows what might happen.”
“London Broncos have produced so many players through this system and I think that’s down to a couple of reasons. Firstly you become a family down here as nearly everyone is away from home or at least some of the boys are. The second thing is that everyone knows, from the outset, how tough it is. We all believe in each other and trust each other down here and I am sure that has been the same throughout the years.”
It can be hard for parents too, to be able to let their children take the leap but Jacob assured us his parents were behind him every step of the way.
“My Dad used to drive me down from Loughborough three times a week for the first part of my academy life. He was a huge influence on me and without him none of this would have been possible. I think we sometimes forget how much our parents have to give up for us to follow our dreams and that should never be forgotten.”
The end of the 2017 season saw Jacob’s career take an upward turn with the signing of his first team contract and getting the call up to Jamaica.
“It’s been a crazy journey over the last four or five months. Firstly signing the contract here at Broncos and then actually turning out and scoring for the Jamaica side against France, who were a team going to the World Cup. I cant really remember scoring the try to be honest as the whole team went crazy. But I am so proud of what I have achieved so far and am looking forward to playing well in the first team in the coming season.”
The Academy trials take place on the 10th December and to register or find out more information please contact Head of Youth Development, Rob Powell, by the 6th of December :- [email protected]