- Courtney organises new strip for NSB
- Lee happy for team to be underdogs
Photo: Getty Images
Northampton School for Boys will take the field at Twickenham Stadium for the Daily Mail RBS Schools' Under 18 Cup final against Dulwich College on Saturday (March 23) wearing brand-new kit supplied for them by one of their most famous old boys.
England lock Courtney Lawes has organised the strip, which will be embroidered before the weekend, as a gesture of support for the school that set him on the road to rugby fame.
“Courtney is always there and he’s very approachable,” said NSB coach Mark Lee. “He always remembers where he was brought up and he has gone out of his way to help us by organising the strip for the final.”
NSB can also count Bob Taylor, an England international, British and Irish Lion and Past President of the RFU, and Steve Thompson, a Rugby World Cup winner ten years ago, among their famous old boys but this will be the first time that they have played in a Daily Mail RBS Schools' final.
Paul Grayson, another of England’s 2003 Rugby World Cup heroes, has helped NSB prepare for the biggest match in their history by running a kicking coaching session, which Lee hopes will give them the edge against Dulwich, who beat Old Swinford Hospital School in last year’s final.
“It’s a busy week off-field as well as on-field,” Lee said. “We are trying to keep things as normal as we possibly can.
“We have tried to ensure that the itinerary for the week is not much different to what we normally do to help us maintain our composure.
“The response from the public has been magnificent and we will be taking 15 coachloads of supporters with us so we will have little difficulty in getting rid of our allocation of 2,000 tickets.
“We’ve trained quite well, we’ve got a couple of niggles which we hope will clear up this week.
“We are looking forward to it. Dulwich know their way to Twickenham. It’s the first time for us but I have spoken a lot about the desire and mindset of this side.
“We have a good defensive record and we are not going to roll over.
“I’m quite happy not to be going as favourites. But we are certainly not going there just to make up the numbers, we are going there to have a tilt at the trophy.”
The following information is relevant for those travelling to Twickenham for the Daily Mail RBS Schools' Day Finals on March 23. Due to engineering works there are no South West trains using Richmond or Twickenham stations this weekend. The mainline trains will terminate at Barnes and Feltham and be replaced by a shuttle bus service, which will service the Twickenham area.
The mainline train service into Kingston is unaffected.
There are London Underground services into Richmond (District Line) and Hounslow (Piccadilly Line) and the London Overground from North London and Stratford will be running as normal into Richmond.
For further information on disruptions and services available, please visit the South West Trains and Transport for London websites.