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Myerscough Academy boosts NW girls' rugby

24 January 2013

  • New Academy raises bar for rugby girls
  • Preston programme offers new option

Rugby union for girls in the north west will receive a major boost in September 2013 with the opening of Myerscough College Girls' Rugby Academy – the first of its kind in the north of England.

The Academy will be based at the college’s Preston campus and will offer talented female rugby players (aged 16 and over) the unique opportunity to live and train as professional athletes, whilst studying towards qualifications that can lead to a career in the game.

The aim of the Academy is to offer a chance to study towards a number of qualifications – from BTEC Level 3 to degree level – whilst living and training like elite women’s rugby players. The new Academy will also offer a limited number of places on the RFU Achieving Academic and Sporting Excellence (AASE) scheme.

An AASE scheme for boys is in place at the college and run in partnership with Sale Sharks RFC and the new girls academy is designed to develop technical skills, tactical knowledge, physical conditioning, all-round knowledge of the game and what it takes to become an elite women’s rugby player.

The England Women’s rugby team, currently top of the unofficial world rankings, has spurred the women’s game to go from strength to strength in recent years and participation is at an all-time high with over 14,000 women and girls registered.

For Steve Gough, Head of Rugby and Sale Sharks AASE Manager at Myerscough College, the success of women’s rugby at the elite end means there has never been a better time to strengthen the women’s game, particularly at the under 19 level.

He said: “Creating a Girls' Academy at Myerscough College has been an ambition of mine for some years. The success of the England team in recent years has driven awareness of women’s rugby and ultimately is increasing the quality of players coming through the system.

“With this in mind, 2013 seems like the perfect time to launch the Girls’ Academy here at Myerscough.

“As with the boys, we want to improve skills, knowledge and understanding of the game and create an environment that helps players develop into better athletes, whilst providing them with an education to enable them to one day develop a career in professional rugby union.”

Myerscough College is holding a ‘taster day’ for the new Academy at its Preston campus on February 20, between 9:30am and 3:00pm.

The programme has been designed to allow potential students the chance to see what the college can offer. For further information or to book your place, please contact Steve Gough, Head of Rugby at Myerscough College, on: 07747-777963 or