Wasps may be thriving in Coventry but the squad returned to London today following the launch of its retail bond on the London Stock Exchange.
Wasps moved to the 32,600 capacity Ricoh Arena in Coventry shortly before Christmas and hit the ground running at their new home.
Most recently they beat Exeter Chiefs there in a thrilling 36-29 victory on Sunday – sealed by a try-of-the-season contender from scrum-half Joe Simpson – and currently sit in sixth place in the Aviva Premiership Rugby table.
But they took a break from training to head to the capital this afternoon and raise awareness of Wasps within the City following the launch earlier this week of the new seven-year bond – aimed at raising between £25m and £35m.
After setting up camp at the London Stock exchange the players encouraged bankers and brokers to take part in a fastest pass competition, as well as signing rugby balls, and Wasps wing Christian Wade enjoyed the chance to meet a few fans.
“We are here to raise awareness of Wasps because we just launched a new bond,” said Wade. “London is the hub of everything so we want everyone to know what we are doing and to get involved.
“I haven’t had a go of the passing test – I play on the wing and I don’t really need to pass it much, so I decided not to have a go today.
“Joe Simpson holds the record for it, something like 48 mph so it’s pretty tough to beat. I’ve seen some boys throw it and only get 20 mph so I decided ‘no’.
“I think some of the boys have tried to beat Joe but instead of throwing it, they’ve started kicking it and still couldn’t beat him so it’s a pretty tough sport.”
Once attentions turn back to Aviva Premiership Rugby, Wasps will host Leicester Tigers and visit London Irish as they look to sneak into the semi-finals.
And Wade is hoping to re-create the feeling after last weekend’s Exeter victory – a result that saw them take a major step towards another season in the European Rugby Champions Cup.
“It was an awesome game,” he added. “We knew we had to go into it strong because Exeter are a team that score most of their tries in the first half so we did well to go into half-time with the lead.
“They came close to going ahead but when Simpson made that amazing break and managed to score in the top left.
“That kind of sealed the deal for us and we knew as long as we we're disciplined and played well we could hold out to the end.
“It was probably one of the best feelings we have had as a team because we knew we were 75 per cent of the way there."
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