Academy hopefuls put through their paces

Matt Emmerson (right) and Alan Holmes.

Matt Emmerson (right) and Alan Holmes.

First published in Rugby Union Football in Fylde Schools

Some 60 under 14 & under 15 rugby players nominated by local schools, the cream of the crop, will be going through an in-depth assessment programme last Monday, at the Woodlands.

The players selected for subsequent in-depth coaching and skill development will be the first intake to Fylde's Academy programme.

The Club has assembled a high quality team of coaches to put these young players through their paces.

Led by Fylde's Director of Rugby Matt Emmerson, the team will include former Sale Sharks Premiership coach Mark Nelson who is now back at the Woodlands, Fylde Academy Manager Alan Holmes, the club's new Rugby Development Officer and Lancashire U'18s Forwards Coach Dave Wilks and specialist kicking coach Steve Gough, another former Fylde favourite.

Matt Emmerson said: "We're starting with the U'14 & U'15 age group following a serious consideration of priorities.

"I've had discussions with a number of leading coaches including England Academy coach Jon Callard and our view is that if concentrate on these age groups then we'll have the time to help them develop the very best into excellent players by the time they reach adult rugby.

"We have to take a long term perspective if this programme is to succeed.

"We then have to keep the programme going so that waves of excellent young players continue to come through the system."

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