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COVENTRY Rugby is excited to announce the launch of the Coventry Rugby Development Academy, aimed at identifying and developing talented young players and coaches between the ages of 18 and 24.

The Development Academy, which advances the development squad successfully introduced this season, will combine playing with education and employment by engaging players in an Elite High Performance development programme  and allowing them to train and play as professional rugby players while gaining qualifications and earning a wage.

As well as the opportunity to play and train alongside the club’s senior squad, with coaching from professional rugby coaches, Academy members will complete a full time strength and conditioning programme and be exposed to the top levels of performance analysis, sports nutrition and medical care.

Players will either play for Coventry in National League One, a Development XV within the Zoo League (the reserve league for Championship and National One clubs) or on loan to one of Coventry’s partner clubs in National Two, Three and Midlands One.

During the season there will be the opportunity to gain RFU coaching certificates, UK Sport awards, an Emergency Aid Certificate and Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Supporting the Delivery of PE and School Sport.

Players who do not already have a part or full time job will be provided with work experience and paid work as a rugby coach within the club’s feeder schools as well as being given paid job opportunities in the Coventry area with many of the club’s partners and sponsors.

“It is an exciting development for the club and for local talented elite players,” said director of rugby, Rowland Winter. “We want to work with the best young players, and this will provide a professional environment which they can benefit from on and off the pitch.”

Said head of development, Matt Price: “There are lots of great young players locally who need an opportunity like this.

“This is a chance to shine and showcase their ability at a higher level. The fact that they have the option of gaining qualifications, experience, and employment makes it even more attractive.”

For details on how to apply to join the Development Academy, follow this link