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Home > News > Sandbach celebrate Twickenham treat
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Your News Sandbach celebrate Twickenham treat
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SANDBACH Rugby Union Football Club’s Rob Amson was in no doubt about the calibre of the day out at Twickenham enjoyed by the contingent from Bradwell Road when they appeared in the O2 Touch Rugby finale last weekend (September 10).

“It was the best day’s rugby I’ve ever had in my life,” said team captain Amson: “I still can’t believe I’ve played in anger on that pitch. I’ve never been a top level rugby player, so to get the opportunity to get my boots dirty at Twickenham was just outstanding.

“We started the O2 Touch as something to do between the end of the season and pre-season training, but when it came to starting preparations for a new campaign, we still had 20 people wanting to carry on. We still had the same numbers at the end of August, so we’ve kept going and still have the same group turning up on Tuesday night to chuck a ball about and have a laugh. We still welcome anyone who wants a run-out and turns up at 7pm!

“Our youngest player Gemma Smith only arrived back from her holidays three hours before we set off for Twickenham at 5am which underlined our dedication to the project and when we arrived the whole thing was just brilliant.

“The way the whole day was set up was excellent. There may only have been 200 or so people there, but that was still the biggest crowd some of us had ever played in front of and the way we were treated, with music blaring and announcements going as we walked onto the pitch made us feel like we were England players. It was that good.

“Everyone dreams of getting on that pitch and most people never get close to doing so. We didn’t pick the most competitive team, we went for the people who had put most into the O2 Touch programme by turning up the most and enjoying themselves the most.

“We had Gemma at 24 the youngest player in our squad, but everyone else was over 35. I was really proud of the fact that we won the award for the team which best epitomised the core values of rugby – teamwork, respect, enjoyment, discipline and sportsmanship.

“England’s Paul Doran Jones was an absolute gem throughout and really got involved with our team and some of the youngsters who went down with us, while overall we were hugely grateful to the RFU and O2 for making a brilliant day possible.”

Nic Fletcher, Head of Sport Sponsorship at O2, said: "The O2 Touch programme has been a nationwide initiative aimed at making touch rugby accessible to anyone over the age of 16. Over 400 clubs across the country already taken part over the summer, which means there has been a club playing touch close to everyone. It's been fantastic to see such a great response to the programme and we hope the enthusiasm will continue. Congratulations to all the teams who made it to the Home of England Rugby for the finals."

The Cheshire club claimed their place at ‘headquarters’ by submitting a video of one of their O2 Touch sessions, which was adjudged to be one of the best in the country and earned them a place among the 12 finalists.

Joining Sandbach on the famous turf were teams from O2, a guest team who won the event and donated their prize to runners-up Wymondham, Penyrn Women, Harwich & Dovercourt, Woodbridge, Chippenham Cheetahs, Keynsham, Salisbury, Plymstock Albion Oaks and guest teams representing Touch London and the NHS.

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