Blues are all set to host U19 10s bonanza

Bedford Blues won last year's inaugural U19 10-a-side tournament at Goldington Road
Bedford Blues won last year's inaugural U19 10-a-side tournament at Goldington Road

Following last year’s successful event, Bedford Blues will again host an U19 10-a-side tournament at Goldington Road on Sunday.

Last year’s inaugural competition was won by Bedford Blues who beat Nottingham 14-5 in the final.

In this year’s tournament London Welsh will face Ealing Trailfinders in the opening game of the competition at noon in Pool A, which also includes London Scottish.

Bedford Blues Academy have been drawn in Pool B, along with Moseley – who they face in their opening game – and Loughborough University.

Speaking about the tournament, Bedford Blues chairman Geoff Irvine said: “The Championship plays a vital role in English Rugby and has produced many players who have gone on to play in the Premiership, and for England in this year’s Six Nations.

“This tournament is an ideal opportunity to show off the fantastic player development work that is being carried out by the Championship clubs.

“The Championship Academies play a key role in developing players for first team squads and you don’t have to look any further than here at Bedford to see that.

“We have three players in our current squad who have come through the ranks at our Academy while many others have passed through and gone on to Premiership and some to international accolades, including Duncan Taylor who continues to make strides for Scotland.”

Denis Ormesher, Bedford Blues academy director, added: “After the success of last year’s tournament we are delighted to host the tournament again. The draw has thrown up some interesting matches between a number of sides who do not normally play each other.

“After a season of 15-a-side it will be fascinating to see which players cope best with the 10-a-side format.”

He continued: “10s is a great game to watch – it needs all the contact skills of 15s, but the extra space rewards sides who can move the ball and have got pace to finish.

“If the rugby is as good as last year it should produce a great day of rugby.”