Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rugby Union: Law Firm Sponsors Falcons' Academy; Scrum Down

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rugby Union: Law Firm Sponsors Falcons' Academy; Scrum Down

Article excerpt

Byline: RICHARD NEALE

NEWCASTLE Falcons have always prided themselves in their ability to field quality English players in their Premiership side, with the aim of making sure the Falcons and the England side are a force to be reckoned with for years to come.

This dream has been made possible thanks to the club's Academy set-up, which has become a vital component in the continuing emergence of quality young players such as Micky Young, Rory Clegg Alex Tait and Rob Miller - a star already being talked about as a possible successor to Jonny Wilkinson with England knocking at the young Cumbrian's door.

This vehicle for producing the next generation of Premiership players at Kingston Park has received a boost, with Newcastle-based law firm Ward Hadaway agreeing to sponsor the Newcastle Falcons academy.

Miller came to the Falcons' notice as a 12-year-old and was invited over after playing district games in Cumbria and came through the club's Junior Academy.

Now a regular with the full Academy side, he is full of praise for the Academy system. "I'm part time because I'm at Northumbria University and it works quite well," said Miller. "The club are very flexible and that's good.

"Obviously, you want to be a pro rugby player but one broken leg and it could all be over, so it's important to have another string to your bow and to also have interests outside rugby. The senior players at this club are really good and you have the two best flyhalves in the world here - that's not a bad learning curve.

"Just being in that environment means you learn what you have to do and inspires you.

"Both Toby Flood and Jonny Wilkinson are approachable and they will do kicking and passing with you after training and that's great."

Miller has revived a long-standing Cumbrian connection with Falcons as many of the club's older supporters will remember that Gosforth in the 1970s and 1980s and Newcastle Gosforth in the 1990s had Cumbria players like England stars Peter Dixon, John Butler and Dave Robinson, plus Paul Cusack, Maxie McDowell, Mike Lowther, to name but a few, in their ranks.

Falcons academy manager Richard Metcalf, himself a Cumbrian and a Gosforth man, is well aware of the link and how valuable it is to the Newcastle club and how vital Ward Hadaway's backing is. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.