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Seal of Approval Club

Seal of Approval

Seal of Approval

What Goes on Tour Stays on Tour

Teddington under 12s “Coming of Age” Tour to Toulouse, 8th February 2008

Full Teams

The majority of our travelling party of 21 children and 20 adults arrived at Gatwick Airport on Friday morning by 5.15am. Although we were bleary eyed after the early start, we were cheered by the arrival of the club chairman, in presidential style, and only half an hour late, having been driven down from Teddington by the slowest of chauffeurs – just can’t get the staff these days!

After a pleasingly uneventful flight we arrived at the Hotel IBIS, Toulouse. Relations with the management improved when we clarified the sleeping arrangements, explaining that the boys would not be sharing with each other but rather their respective parents. Training took place on a small grassy area between Toulouse’s main gyratory system and the canal. No matter, the sun was shining, and we were on tour.

The focus was on the subtleties of playing rugby the French way. Details were a little sketchy but the key principle to emerge from our home made translation of the French continuum, was the emphasis on "opening the door" for one’s teammates. Accordingly the boys practiced drawing defenders and passing from the tackle - generally keeping the ball alive and trying to create space for others to exploit. The rules of rugby French style are explicitly designed to promote a running game. 10 players a side, no contested scrums or lineout’s, penalties took the form of a tap taken by the ref and passed to the aggrieved team. The "gap" between attack and Beaumontdefence was only 3 metres - handling skills and spatial awareness were to be at a premium. Little did we know at this point just how different the "French" game of rugby was going to be?

After a quick shower, we assembled for a pre-dinner presentation. John Gardiner spoke of each boy's special qualities and urged them to respect our hosts, and behave appropriately as representatives of their team, their club and their country. We are happy to report that these standards were upheld at all times. Mike Lightfoot, head coach, then spoke about their individual contributions, before club chairman Kevin Day presented each boy, one by one, with their own tour shirts. These shirts were accepted with universal applause from their teammates and assembled parents - top moment.

We assembled bright and early on Saturday morning for the trip to Balma Olympique - our hosts for a triangular tournament with FCTT. (Football Club Toulousain -L'ELITE AMATEUR. ) Once again we were blessed with bright blue skies, a superb municipal venue, and more than amiable hosts. After a rendition of the La Marseillaise and Swing Low, Teddington Lions took on the red and white of Balma A.

While Teddington had the early territorial advantage, their failure to "unlock the door" of the opposition defence was costly. Balma had several strong runners and it was only a matter of time before they eluded the Teddington rear guard. A try saving tackle from Will Strange could not prevent the inevitable, and Balma ran in 3 tries before half time. There being no conversions the score was 15 - 0.

The second half began very differently, a spirited come back by Teddington brought some fantastic running rugby and three unanswered tries: one each from James Frankenberger, Akira Takenaka and Will Strange. Balma then brought back some of the players used in the first half and scored twice more to run out 25 - 15 winners.

KevinThe second encounter saw Teddington Tigers take on FCTT's first team. FCTT with their striking black strip and exotic sponsors logos are a very ambitious club. They brought a side full of strong runners, but one of their backs stood out above all others. At 13 years old he had already been offered a contract with the academy at Stade Toulousain. Despite Teddington's best efforts, FCTT ran in eight unanswered tries. The older boys from FCTT gave a real exhibition of rugby played the French way, and, while disappointed to lose, the Teddington boys were sure they had played against at least one future French star.

The Teddington Lions then took on the formidable FCTT A team. The result was again a resounding 12 tries to 1 victory for FCTT. Max Peel scored to lone Teddington try, but respect was shared after the game when FCTT learned that Teddington were an under 12 side.

Teddington Tigers then played FCTT B. An exceptional performance from James Khan - who scored two tries, with another coming from Dara meant the game was drawn with three tries each. This was a fair result and a thrilling game for the assembled "crowd".

In our final fixture of the day, Teddington Tigers took on Balma B. Another exceptional performance from James Khan (two tries) and Harry Lightfoot-Brown (2 tries) meant victory for Teddington by 4 tries to 3.

Despite the score lines, a memorable, if challenging, morning's rugby, played in good spirit, culminated with lunch, and presentations in the club house. Balma Olympique’ Coach Franck made a speech and we exchanged gifts of shirts and pennants. The morning was also a great success due to the enthusiastic help of Mags a lone Ireland supporter in a sea of French Rugby! Perhaps the highlight of the day came when 5 Teddington lads were seen (unprompted) speaking with their opponents in the club house (Sam Lewis, Harry L-B, Max, Henry Ellender, and Dara deserve special mention).

Red TeamThe afternoon was spent in various hostelries in Toulouse watching Six Nations games. The Welsh contingent in our party formed a splinter group for the Wales / Scotland game while others focussed on the late afternoon fixture between France and Ireland. The French national side won in impressive style with a display of the kind of fast flowing running rugby that is clearly instilled from a young age. All four tries were scored by Stade Toulousain players - 3 from super fast winger Vincent Clerc - happy days for the many local fans watching with us.

Sunday was a replay of Saturday - bright sunshine and this time a coach journey through some beautiful French countryside as we headed for Beaumont de Lomagne. The club has a very proud history, not least as the starting place for Jean-Pierre Rive's rugby career. After training with the French boys we had the pleasure of hearing the club president address the first fifteen ahead of their match with bitter local rivals -Bon chance Beaumont! The lead coaches of Beaumont, Mike Craig and Monsieur Pilot, took the Teddington boys and coached them for one hour on some French insights. Mike Lightfoot and his team of coaches took the sixteen French boys and coached them with perfect Franglais on some useful handling drills and the boys responded well! The morning was finished with a non contact game aimed at keeping the ball alive with plenty of offloads.

Lunch proved a real highlight, lasting fully two hours. We were treated to wine, pizza and quiche on the patio, before sitting down inside to three courses. Presentations were made and photos taken for the local press.
Another coach journey through stunning countryside brought us to St Clar. The boys were to play our morning hosts, Beaumont, as a curtain raiser for St Clar's first team league fixture

Full teamTeddington Tigers suffered a nine try to nil defeat. All the tries followed a familiar pattern of Teddington runner taking contact unsupported, promptly losing possession, allowing a French break-away try.

On the other side of the pitch, Teddington Lions took on Beaumont A. Here the score ended 12 – 6 in Beaumont’s favour. Akira Takenaka scored 3, and Erik Day, Alex and Harry Griffith one a-piece. At least England managed to hold on to defeat Italy in the final Six Nations fixture of the weekend, while the St Clar first fifteen won their match convincingly.

As we said our goodbyes and extended an invitation for our Beaumont hosts to come to Teddington next year, several players and parents were heard to question the logic of returning home and leaving the sun kissed French countryside (and the bar) behind us.

Although the weekend’s results were not what we would have wished for, the opposition was very strong and in most cases much older, the tour was a very big learning experience for all the boys. One big advantage of having fewer players on the pitch at one time is that everyone saw their full share of the action. So it was a tired and bruised party that finally headed back to Toulouse airport, a few Euros lighter but with some great memories of places visited, and friendships made.

Rugby Football Union’s Seal of Approval

Teddington RFC are proud to have recently been awarded the Rugby Football Union’s Seal of Approval.

The RFU in conjunction with Sport England first introduced this scheme in 2002 in an attempt to increase and sustain the number of children participating in rugby at grass roots level. Clubs are assessed by the RFU and must demonstrate evidence of good practice in areas such as administration; development, duty of care, sports equity and playing programmes.

The Minis and Junior Sections at Teddington RFC have grown significantly in recent years and the Club now regularly has over 400 Minis training and playing on a Sunday morning.

Teddington RFC Youth Chairman, Simon Cartmell, outlined the importance of this award:

“Working towards the Seal of Approval has helped us to focus on good practice and policies and indeed develop new ones where necessary. Achieving this accreditation has given the Youth Section a solid foundation to take this part of the Club forward, encouraging and developing future generations of rugby players”.

He also pays tribute to the numerous volunteers who ensure the ongoing development of the Club:

“The Seal of Approval is a major step forward for the Club. It ensures that any prospective new members are guaranteed they are joining a Club which has fully qualified coaches and referees; an acknowledged child care policy and a three year plan for development, all of which have been approved by the RFU. This has been a fantastic effort by the Youth Team. They have put in a huge amount of time to achieve this accreditation and it highlights what can be accomplished with endeavour and dedication. We have a flourishing Youth Section at Teddington RFC and Sunday mornings are a hive of activity. We are now starting to see the rewards of all this effort as players who initially started in the junior ranks of the Club turn out for the First and Second Senior teams. It is vital that we maintain this system to ensure the continuing development of the Club and to safeguard its future”.

Teddington success at the Quins’ Curtain Raiser Cup

Picture: Teddington U7s “bump” into former England legend Jason Leonard at the Cobham C Festival!

Teddington RFC’s mini rugby section took a bow at the Etihad Airways Curtain Raiser Cup last Saturday at the Harlequins’ Stoop Memorial Ground after having notched up successes across all age group sections. The U7As, U8As , and U9As won their sections outright whilst the U10As and U12As also have a great chance of going on to the Cup’s semi-final stages as group runners-up in early March 2008. Elsewhere, Teddington were also victorious at the Grasshopper’s “B” Festival and the Cobham “C” Festival either winning or sharing winning honours at U7, U8, U9, U10, and U11 age groups proving that the Club has great strength in depth.

If you’re interested in joining Teddington RFC please email goplay@teddingtonrfc.co.uk.

Teddington River Festival Dragon Boat Challenge
22 September 2007

It all happened on Saturday. The "Teddington Youth Rugby Team" looked distinctly un-youthful, especially compared to some of the other "thrursting" teams who turned up for the event. The other teams were Milestone Residential, RNLI, Collis Primary School, Dexters, Haymarket and Richmond Raiders. With 7 seven teams taking part, the format was to have three head-to-head races, with the key factors being speed, speed and speed. The two fastest times of the day would be in the final to battle for the overall winners trophy.

After a quick bit of training on which way to point the oar The Teddington team had their first race and somehow found the magic formula of coordination and came first. The time of was an impressive 1 minute 7 seconds which took Teddington to the top of the leader board. The next race was even better with the cry of "Reach, Reach" (or was that "Retch, Retch"?) driving the boat forward at a furious pace. This time the team got its best time of the day of 1 minute 2 seconds and became clear leaders. The confidence was starting to rise now and the team started to take things seriously, even avoiding the bar - serious stuff. The next race was against Milestone esate agents who had clearly been over indulging and enjoying themselves; unlike the true athletes of the Teddington team. When it came to the race, Milestone put pressure on a flagging Teddington team, and Teddington only just managed to beat them, but they DID beat them.

So Teddington Rugby were in the final with their 2nd race time securing their place. The Milestone guys (and girls) managed to get the second best time of the day, so it was head to head "Natural Athletes" vs "Bunch of Estate Agents" - The Teddington team were already wondering on which shelf of the trophy cabinet they would put the winners trophy. The race was a fierce battle with oars clashing and neither team giving an inch. In the final push for the line, the estate agents got the better of the rugby coaches and nosed ahead winning the race by a tenth of a second. Was it old age, was it the hamburger the little fat bloke at the back of the boat had before the last race (mention know names) or was it just not their time? This we'll never know .... Well done to the winners and RNLI who came third place overall.

A big thank you to two of Teddington Youth Rugby's main sponsors who joined the team as guest ringers.... I mean "rowers" for the day: Paul Belcher from the Teddington Arms and Stefan Kadlubowski from MKG 3000. Special thanks to Stefan for covering the team's entry costs. Teddington Youth Rugby would also like to thank all the people who kindly sponsored the rowers taking part in this event. Of course, last but not least, thank you to all the coaches for their rowing efforts and to Sue Thomas for her drum banging and strict team management!

New Season.

The new season starts on Sunday 2nd September. All mini-age groups (U6-U12) will be at Imber Court. We will like to welcome any new players in particular. We start at 10am. On arrival ask for the registration desk, from where you will be directed to the appropriate age group. Then you can start to play rugby with Teddington. Any Junior players (U13+), please contact the relevant Lead Coach via the web site.

Teddington RFC Newsletter

Click here to download a pdf version of the newsletter.

Teddington RFC Player Has Dream Start For England

Ross Swanson won his first International cap for England u18’s earlier this month and celebrated by joining promotion winning Teddington RFC players in the clubhouse after their victory over Reigate on Saturday 14th April.  Ross, who was in the first group of Teddington mini's back in the early 90's, was playing his first complete match at full back in the AER u18’s international tournement in France.  He had an outstanding debut and managed to score three tries helping England to a 79-0 win.  When his school commitments allow Ross still plays for the Teddington Colts and the 1st team.

Teddington win Rose Bowl at Staines Festival

U11 Winners

Despite the persistent rain and ever increasing mud, players from Teddington Youth Rugby stuck to their guns and put in their best ever performance at the Staines A Festival on Sunday 4th March. Teddington were crowned overall winners at U8, U10, U11 and runners-up at U7, U9 and U12.  It was a terrific achievement for every team to get into the final against strong clubs such as Richmond, Hove, Sutton and Epsom and host club Staines, and shows the depth of ability within the club and the good work put in by all the coaches. Teddington were presented, for the second year in a row with the prestigious Rose Bowl for being the best achieving club on the day.

Teddington Arms Wins Community Pub Of The Year Award for London

Teddington Arms

The Teddington Arms has been named the Morning Advertiser community pub of the year for London.

The pub has been a huge supporter of Teddington Rugby Club over the last four years and is, for the 5th year running, the main sponsor of the annual Mini Rugby Tour to the tune of £2,000.

This year the club is touring to Sussex and the financial support provided by the Teddington Arms has allowed the club to keep the costs for each player at a minimum.  The funding also allows the club to provide the players with special edition tour shirts, which all adds to the touring experience. 

Kevin Day, Minis Chairman, said "The club is extremely grateful to the support provided by the Teddington Arms and believe the pub sets a fine example of how local businesses can invest in the community for the mutual benefit of all". 

Teddington Arms Manager, Paul Belcher, said "Our policy is to have a strong community focus and we are delighted to support the youngsters of Teddington as they develop into the rugby stars of tomorrow".

Two New Sponsorship Deals For Teddington Youth Rugby

Teddington Youth Rugby recently agreed two new excellent sponsorship deals with Massive Ltd. and Savills plc.

The former, Massive Limited, own the a selection of Pubs in the Teddington, Twickenham and Kingston area including The Kings Head and L'Auberge Restaurant in Teddington, the Twickenham Tup and the Kingston Tup.

The second sponsorship deal is with Savills (Richmond Branch), who have kindly agreed to become the new shirt sponsor for Teddington Youth Rugby and will include branding on all of the ten Youth teams and replace the previous sponsorship arrangements.

Savills are keen to secure new business in the Teddington area and if anyone is thinking of selling or letting their house or flat, please do give them a call on 020 8614 9100 or e-mail richmond@savills.com  

Mention the connection with Teddington RFC and they have said that they will give a 20% reduction on commission rates to TRFC members and donate £1000 to the club for each completed sale of a club members property made through them.

Harlequins Curtain Raiser Cup

Scoring a try

Teddington Youth Rugby U7s, U8s, U9s and U11s all qualified for the next round of the Harlequins Curtain Raiser Cup at The Stoop on Saturday 4th November.  Victories came against some very tough opposition, including Blackheath, Tunbridge Wells, Upminster and Westcombe Park and preceded Quins first league win of the season over Northampton.  A magnificent defensive effort saw the U9s win all their games without conceding a single try.

Triple Trophy Success At Grasshoppers

Scoring a try

Teddington Youth Rugby claimed three trophy’s on Sunday 29th October as the U7s, U9s and U10s all ran out winners at the Grasshoppers festival. The U10s played like a side driven by both naked ambition and the knowledge that the manager was prone to scoring ‘11’ on the nutter dial should anything go wrong. Happily, nothing ever did and despite a massive scare from the hosts in the final Teddington ended the game as worthy winners.
The U9s topped their pool and then beat the hosts in a close semi final thanks to a spectacular late try. A fiercely contested final against Ealing followed with Teddington winning 4-3. Two Teddington teams met each other in the U7s final and the U8s and U11s also performed well with both teams making it to the semi finals.

Welcome BBQ & Grand Opening Ceremony

BBQ and Grand Opening

On Sunday 24th September, the minis section had their welcome BBQ for at Imber Court. Sarah Meagher and a team of volunteers managed to provide excellent food for a few hundred kids and parents. A big thank you to her and everyone who helped.

The minis coaches also staged an example game of "touch" rugby (we couldn't get the tag belts around the coaches bellies) between the green-U6 coaches and the puffed-out older age group coaches. Kevin Day was on hand to provide his usual level of dubious refereeing, which resulted in two players being sin-bined (actually, they looked like they needed a rest!).

To finish off, Andy Friend, head coach of the NEC Harlequins, performed the grand opening ceremony of a new trophy cabinet in the Imber Court bar area. This cabinet have been installed specifically to hold the silverware of the youth section. The cabinet is already fully stocked with last season’s treasure chest of trophies and shields. Andy commended the Club on what it had achieved and wished it success for the season ahead. It is hoped that the cabinet will enhance the club atmosphere for families using the Imber Court facilities after training and fixtures.