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Haverhill Rugby Club excited to return to adapted contact rugby




Haverhill’s players will return to training for the first time since October on Tuesday with the big bonus of 15-a-side adapted contact games now being on the horizon.

The RFU confirmed on Monday it has been given the green light by the government for the resumption of 15-a-side contact rugby, with some adaptations.

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, all contact rugby has been suspended across the country since March, though Haverhill were continuing restricted training.

Haverhill are hoping to have a friendly match before Christmas. Picture: Mark Westley
Haverhill are hoping to have a friendly match before Christmas. Picture: Mark Westley

However, from the national lockdown being lifted yesterday clubs are able to resume adapted training for the 15-a-side form of the game, with friendly fixtures permitted from Friday, December 18.

Club captain Zac Evans said: “Obviously we are over the moon and it is the big news we have been waiting for since this pandemic stopped rugby.

“There was a meeting with the Eastern Counties (League) last week that set out how we might move forward.

Haverhill captain Zac Evans. Picture: Richard Marsham
Haverhill captain Zac Evans. Picture: Richard Marsham

“There was talk of setting up a competitive league or cup. We would normally finish in March or April but this would go on through May and potentially a bit longer, so we could still get a full season in.

“The group chat has been as busy as ever and people are buzzing to get started again.”

The new adapted game will include no scrums or mauls, free kicks instead of scrums at a restart and a minimum of five (maximum seven) players required to form a line-out.

“It will be how the women are playing at the minute with no rucks and no scrummaging and very similar to rugby league,” said Evans.

Haverhill will be back in training next week.
Haverhill will be back in training next week.

“It will probably get everyone’s fitness up as no-one is able to rest in a scrum or a maul.”

He said he hoped to get a friendly fixture arranged before Christmas but will wait to see how people adapt to the return to training to avoid injuries.

Despite a number of options being put on the table at the Eastern Counties meeting, including a programme of Ready 4 Rugby, a touch game of up to 10-a-side, Evans said they were very much in favour of a 15-a-side competitive adapted-contact league.

“We have just got to wait and see what they come up with now,” he said.

Anyone interested in joining training at the club, or for more information, can email Evans at: zevans1123@gmail.com