- Manu Tuilagi shows RFUtv around John Cleveland College
- Leicester, England and Lions centre heads back to his Hinckley roots
Earlier this month, Manu Tuilagi took RFUtv on a tour of his old school, John Cleveland College in Hinckley, to mark the launch of the rebranded NatWest Schools Cup.
From a charming self-portrait he penned in his first year, to the match shirt he wore – and scored a try in – during England’s superb 24-22 away win over France just last March, there were reminders of the Leicester Tigers centre at every turn.
Photo: RFU Archive
Although he is only one part of the college’s rich rugby tradition – John Cleveland has also produced fellow British and Irish Lions Dean Richards, Graham Rowntree and Ollie Smith – Tuilagi’s immense popularity shone through as he chatted to former teachers and threw a ball around with awe-struck pupils.
Having arrived on these shores from Samoa at the age of 12 with only a loose grasp of the English language, Tuilagi needed to make rather rapid progress in the classroom thoroughout his time at John Cleveland and in his earlier years at close by Mount Grace High School.
And despite his meteoric rise in rugby, which reached the heights of a victorious Lions tour to Australia this summer, the 22 year-old has never forgotten those who helped him out at the start. Check out the video to watch Manu return to his old stomping ground.