Wasps have already secured themselves a semi-final spot as the race for a place in this year’s Aviva Premiership Rugby Final heats up, but they also helped two local clubs to bag a visit to Twickenham on final day thanks to the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup.
While we are still eagerly anticipating who will be gracing the hallowed turf at rugby HQ on Saturday 28 May, two teams will definitely be sampling the atmosphere.
They are Old Leamingtonians under-12s and Buckingham under-11s after they sealed their spots at rugby’s showpiece finale at the Wasps’ leg of the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup, held at Broadstreet Rugby Club in Coventry on Sunday.
Launched during the 2008-09 season, the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup is the first national grassroots tournament officiated by Premiership Rugby and run in conjunction with all 12 clubs.
More than 7,000 children take part in the competition each season, with two teams from each Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup getting the chance to go to the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final at Twickenham on 28 May.
And for 11-year-old Tom Heath, watching the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final with his Old Leamingtonians teammates will be the realisation of a lifelong dream.
“It’s really fantastic for our club that we are going to Twickenham,” the Warwick School pupil said. “It is a massive dream of mine.
“It’s an amazing place and I love going to matches there, so I’m really excited and happy for my team.
“We’ve played really well and we had lots of fun playing in the tournament; it’s always great to play at big festivals like the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup.
“It’s great that Wasps and Premiership Rugby put events like this on for us, because it gets more people involved in rugby and encourages people to take up the sport.”
Joining Old Leamingtonians at Twickenham will be Buckingham under-11s, after they also impressed with their solid performances on the field in Coventry at the weekend.
Old Leamingtonians captain Luka Daniels cannot believe his luck, insisting a trip to the capital is a truly deserved prize for his determined teammates.
“The team were excellent,” said the 11-year-old from Westbury. “I’m so proud of how we have performed.
“We’ll now have to come back next year and win it all over again, but first we have a huge game at Twickenham to look forward to.
“We never thought we would get there but now we can’t wait, it is going to be so much fun.”
Former Wasps and England wing Paul Sackey was on hand at the tournament and, along with current Wasps’ players Alex Rieder and Piers O’Conor, was impressed with what he saw.
“The Midlands have got a great stock of sportspeople and I think the level of talent on show has been outstanding,” said Sackey.
“There are some very good players, many of whom will aspire to play for Wasps, and I have no doubt that some of them will in the future.
“I want everyone to play rugby, and it’s so important to get the kids learning about health and fitness at this age, as well as learning about discipline and morals along the way.
“I love coming to the Land Rover Premiership Cup because I get to see the kids’ progression from year to year, and it’s really special for me because I love to see the enjoyment on their faces, and that is the most important thing.”
Land Rover is a proud supporter of grassroots rugby and has been a partner of the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup for nearly a decade. Land Rover’s ‘We Deal In Real’ campaign continues to champion grassroots rugby through Premiership Rugby and the Land Rover Premiership Rugby Cup. @LandRover_UK #WeDealInReal