Royal College Rugby authorities have awarded its triumphant First XV side of 2017 with a educational tour which will also include a couple of matches and some coaching stints with top All Blacks coaches In New Zealand. The tour will begin on September 8 and will go on for 10 days with the support of Royal Rugby sponsors KIA Motors, Brandix and tour sponsors Anchor.
The touring party will include 36 players and the coaching staff but interestingly it does not comprise the team’s chief mentor Sanath Martis, who reportedly has stepped down and taken over St. Peter’s College after serving for four years. Royal is expected to play two matches in Auckland and Northland besides the planned coaching camps with New Zealand experts which include coaching, strengthening and conditioning sessions.
The present title holders of the Singer Schools Under-20 Rugby League Championship and the coveted Bradby Shield, Royal College will play against Rangitoto College in Northshore on September 11 followed by a game against Kings College at Otahuhu on September 14. Royal players will undergo training sessions conducted by former All Blacks Head Coach Sir Graham Henry, former New Zealand greats Sir John Kirwin and Joe Stanley. They will also get to witness a weekend game between New Zealand and South Africa at North Harbour on September 16.
“The team includes all members of the triumphant team from 2017 and members of the next season’s First XV team, which will come to 36 altogether. This trip will be a great experience for our players, who will certainly execute what they learnt in the upcoming season as well as during their day-to-day life. We are proud of you for making Royal the best School Rugby team this season and this is a well deserving reward for their efforts,” stated B.A. Abeyratne, the Principal of Royal.