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Vale of Lune Colts riding high in top North West league

Vale of Lune Junior Colts

The younger stars of the Vale of Lune rugby union club are shining brightly after a series of impressive results.

The Vale Junior Colts, all aged 16 to 17, are currently riding high in the top league in the North West.

They are also through to semi finals in the League and County Cups and have emerged as the team they all want to beat.

Growing in confidence with each game, the Vale Colts are currently the most successful team at Powder House Lane.

Traditionally, injury and abstraction can make selection difficult in mid-season, but the Vale Colts have had no such issues.

Training has continued without impediment and the enthusiasm to play shines through each player. The team is captained by Jake Lloyd. Place kicking duties fall to Luke McConnell or Hector Cullen and the highest try scorer is Ashton Kassam Sharples. All are names to watch for in the near future. 

Under the guidance of coaches Tony Gilmour and Neil Sutcliffe, the squad remain unbeaten in their league and claim the top spot.

This promising assembly of young sporting talent has reached this pinnacle despite facing 'big club' opponents including: Sedgley Park, Caldy, Sandbach, Stockport, Wigan and Preston Grasshoppers.

Tony is in no doubt as to the short and long term benefits to players and the club.

He said: "It is the wish of every rugby club to manage and develop talent from within the club and guide them through to senior level. This is where the Colts sections are so important for the modern game in making the transition from junior to senior level."

A glimpse into the antecedents of the current Vale first team shows that over half of the squad are former Vale youth players, providing clear proof that the youth programme works and works well.

Several players within the current Colts squad have progressed through to Sale Sharks Development training and on toward Lancashire trials for their age grade.

Two other players have developed through the Newcastle Falcon development programme towards Cumbria county selection. In a recent  adjustment, the Under 16s squad have been included in training with the Colts and will be absorbed into the squad in due course. 

Meanwhile, as the Colts continue to assert themselves in their league and cup clashes, the future is looking bright for the Vale of Lune selectors in the years to come. 

*Thank you to Barry Lees for the article.


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