NLD are proud to announce that Rahat Choudhury has been selected for England Under 20 Counites side to take on Holland in two test matches in early June.
The side will play their first match on Wednesday, 7 June followed by a second test of Saturday, 10 June against a representative Holland side.
The squad was chosen following the conclusion of the Jason Leonard U20 County Championship as well as a divisional weekend of fixtures held at Chetwyn Barracks in Nottingham. Rahat represented NLD in their U20 Championship campaign in which NLD went through the Quarter Finals before missing out to Cheshire. NLD U20 Manager Graeme Gunn commented;
“We are delighted for Rahat, he has worked extremely hard over the last couple of months and we wish him the very best on the tour to Holland”.
“The standard was incredibly high this year which made selection very difficult,” said team manager Chris Brookes.
“We’re very happy with the players we have and can’t wait to start what will be a brilliant tour. To pull on an England shirt and represent your country is a huge honour for these players.”
In preparation for the tour the side played a trial match against our Nottingham Academy, which England won 26-19 in a top quality match. Joining Rahat from Nottingham Academy are Seb Cecil and Josh Nott, making it three into the final squad of 23.
The team will be led by head coach Richie Williams as well as Paul Arnold with three of last year’s squad members returning to this year’s team.
5 NLD U20’s have been named in the 23 man squad to play in the Divisional Festival over the Bank Holiday weekend.
Huge congratulations to:
Dre Clifton Forbes West Bridgford RFC / Nottingham Academy
James Newman South Leicester RFC / Nottingham Academy
Dan Salt Doncaster Phoenix RFC
Rahat Choudhary Hinckley RFC / Nottingham University
Harry Graham Hartpury College / Nottingham Academy
NLD Honorary Secretary Tracy Edmundson commented; ‘We are delighted to see these players represent NLD at the next level and wish them the very best of luck for the festival’.
11 NLD U20 players have been selected in the 34 man Midlands Squad ahead of the final selection at Nottingham RFC on 24th April. From here the final 23 man squad will be selected to play in the Divisional Festival over May Bank Holiday.
NLD U20 Manager Graeme Gunn commented; ‘It’s fantastic to see so many NLD players through to the next stage of selection. The most we have had in a previous year would be 9 so it is testament to the quality of the squad this year that so many made it through. We would like to thank everyone involved in the U20’s squad this year and wish these players the best of luck as they continue their journey’.
George Freeman – Spalding
Dre Forbes – West Bridgford / Nottingham Academy
James Newman – South Leicester / Nottingham Academy
Dan Salt – Doncaster Knights
Jacob Wright – Long Eaton
Joe Mcmenamin – Long Eaton / Nottingham Academy
Rahat Choudhoury – Nottingham University / Middlesburgh / Hinckley
Harry Graham – Hartpury College / Nottingham Academy
Tim Bitirim – Loughborough University
Philip Fletcher – Kesteven / Keele University
Tom Benjamin – Burton / Nottingham Academy
The strength in depth of the NLD under 20 squad this season really showed last weekend with 6 enforced changes 48 hours before the game. 31 players have been used so far in this campaign. Even with this, the squad came out winners 35-22 over Oxfordshire only conceeding 5 points in the second half. As well as this there were 8 changes from the squad that played Warwickshire three weeks ago and narrowly lost 18-17.
This win has meant that the squad has made the play off against Cheshire on Sunday 2nd April to be played at Wilmslow Rugby club – kick off 2.30pm.
The game was played in fine weather at West Bridgford Rugby club and was relatively close at half time with Oxfordshire getting the lion’s share of the possession going in at half time 17-11 up. NLD’s defence took a while to get itself together in the first half with three tries against (one converted). Tim Bitirim scored all of the NLD points in the first half with two penalties and a try.
There were some enforced changes where Rahat Chouhoury had to leave the field with a leg injury replaced by Ilkeston’s open side Sam Humphries. Rahat has not had much luck as he was injured in the Warwickshire game as well. Conor Mcclean (15) was also injured so Nottingham Academy’s young Adam Castle came on after about 20 minutes for his first start with the 20s.
The pack had to work very hard in the first half so fresh legs were brought on at half time. Pierre Byworth for Ayrton Radford (both last minute call ups). Joe Mcmenamin for Tom Tucker. Jake Hicklin for TJ Oghere. Harry Graham came on at scrum half for Conor Milnes.
With the Oxfordshire pack tiring during the second half, the tables turned and the NLD scrum became totally dominant. Two tries were scored at the base after the NLD scrum drove the opposition scrum back over 15 metres. One by James Newman (moved to 8) and one by scrum half Harry Graham. Another sniping try by Harry Graham and a solo effort try by Bitirim (with two of the 4 NLD tries in the second half converted by him) left the score at 35-22 at fulltime – 20 points score by fly half Bitirim.
The team spirit in this squad is brilliant with everyone playing for and supporting their mates on and off the pitch.
Phil Milton (head coach) said “This result is well deserved after coming so close against Warwickshire. We now have some interesting selection decisions to make for the match against Cheshire. Whatever happens I have been very impressed with the commitment to training and mutual support amongst the players. This success is also due to the planning and training sessions by my fellow coaches Steve Grainger, Adam Gallagher and Jake Lamb.”
|Oghere||Teiri Ajuki||Derby/Loughborough University|
|Forbes||Dre||West Bridgford/Nottingham Academy|
|Newman||James||South Leicester/Nottingham Acdemy|
|Gathercole||Reuben||Long Eaton /Nottingham Academy|
|Choudoury||Rahat||Nottingham University/ Middlesborough/Hinkley|
|Tucker||Tom||Long Eaton /Nottingham Academy|
|Mazoredzi||Malvin||Long Eaton /Nottingham Academy|
|Fletcher||Philip||Kesteven /Keele University|
|Taylor||Will||Nottingham Trent University|
|Hicklin||Jake||West Bridgford/ Nottingham Academy|
|Mcmenamin||Joe||Long Eaton/ Nottingham Academy|
|Graham||Harry||Hartbury College/Nottingham Academy|
|Castle||Adam||Spalding/ Nottingham Academy|
NLD under 20 Team Manager
The NLD U20 Squad to face Oxfordshire in the last RFU County Championship Match of the season has been announced.
Looking to avenge the last minute defeat away to Warwickshire a couple of weeks ago the team will welcome Oxfordshire to West Bridgford RFC for a 2.30pm Kick Off.
All are welcome to come along to support the squad, with players looking to impress the watching selectors it promises to be an excellent game.
|1||Neary||Declan||Long Eaton/Nottingham Academy|
|2||Newman||George||Nottingham Trent University/Nottingham Academy|
|3||Forbes||Dre||West Bridgford/Nottingham Academy|
|4||Newman||James||South Leicester/Nottingham Academy|
|7||Choudoury||Rahat||Nottingham University/Student pass – Middlesburgh/Hinckley|
|8||Tucker||Tom||Long Eaton/Nottingham Academy|
|11||Mazoredzi||Malvin||Long Eaton/Nottingham Academy|
|13||Taylor||Will||Nottingham Trent University|
|19||Mcmenamin||Joe||Long Eaton/Nottingham Academy|
|21||Graham||Harry||Hartbury Collge/Nottingham Academy|
|22||Calland||Gabriel||Cardiff University/Nottingham Academy|
NLD under 20 squad took to the road travelling to Old Leamingtonians RFC to play Warwickshire under 20s on Sunday 26th February, with half the squad under 19 at the beginning of the season there was a good balance of youth and experience. The coaching team of Phil Milton (head coach), Steve Grainger, Adam Gallagher and Jake Lamb have only had a few training sessions with the squad and one training game against Lancashire to prepare for this first fixture.
The match was a very tight affair with NLD being pipped in the 45th minute of the second half, 18-17. NLD played into the wind in the first half. They dominated the set piece and breakdown area. The 2/8/9/10/15 partnership of George Freeman, Rahat Choudhoury, Harry Graham, Tom Bitrimin and Tom Benjamin gave the whole squad a great spine.
NLD looked very strong with the ball in hand and were unlucky not to be further ahead than 10-5 at half time. Tries by Dre Clifton Forbes and Jacob Wright converted by Tim Bitirim along with a penalty made up the final NLD score line. Warwickshire made a number of changes in the second half and the pressure came on NLD – in particular at the breakdown and line out area which led to losing out to a last minute penalty.
There were some great performances across the board for such a young squad and this will certainly have given the Midlands selectors something to think about over the next few weeks.
The next match is on Sunday the 19th March against Oxfordshire at West Bridgford Rugby Club – kick off is 2.30pm. Everyone is welcome to come and watch – players, familes, club members and coaches.
A few squad facts:
- Over 50 players have attended the training sessions.
- 17 clubs, four universities or colleges and Nottingham Academy players have been represented at the training sessions.
Congratulations to those players who were selected below:
|Neary||Declan||Long Eaton RFC/Nottingham Academy|
|Newman||George||South Leicester RFC/Nottingham Academy|
|Clifton Forbes||Dre||West Bridgford RFC/Nottingham Academy|
|Newman||James||South Leicester RFC/Nottingham Acdemy|
|Mcmenamin||Joe||Long Eaton RFC/ Nottingham Academy|
|Wright||Jacob||Long Eaton RFC /Nottingham Academy|
|Weedon||Jack||Nottingham Casuals RFC/Nottingham Academy|
|Choudhary||Rahat||Nottingham University/Hinckley RFC|
|Graham||Harry||Hartbury College/Nottingham Academy|
|Bitirim||Tim||South Leicester RFC/Loughborough University|
|Fletcher||Philip||Kesteven RFC/Keele University|
|Mclean||Conor||Nottingham Trent University|
|Mazoredi||Malvin||Long Eaton RFC/ Nottingham Academy|
|Benjamin||Tom||Burton RFC/Nottingham Academy|
|Moyo||Musa||Moderns RFC/Nottingham Academy|
|Tucker||Tom||Long Eaton RFC/ Nottingham Academy|
|Pearson||Kieran||Long Eaton RFC|
|Gathercole||Reuben||Hartbury College/Cinderford RFC|
|Nicholas||Ross||Nottingham Trent University|
NLD U20’s welcome Lancashire RFU to Chesterfield RFC on Sunday 15th January to play a warm up game for the RFU County Championship Fixtures in the next couple of months. The match kicks off at 2.15pm.
Players will represent over 20 clubs, universities and academies throughout NLD and NLD U20 Manager Graeme Gunn commented; “We have been delighted with the number of players interested in being a part of the squad this year as well as the excellent standard. The Coaches are very much looking forward to getting the Programme underway and being able to look at all of the lads in a match environment.”
All are welcome at Chesterfield to support the squad.
The NLD U 20 Programme for the 2016-17 season is about to start with the trials kicking off on Sunday 18th December. We are now inviting all clubs with players who would like to be involved in the programme. In the last three seasons NLD has had 19 players represent the midlands and three (Luke Frixou, Jay Heath and Alex Goble) who represented England Counties.
Attached is a letter from NLD U20 Manager Graeme Gunn and reply slips for Players to put themselves forward and for Coaches to nominate any players that would like to be involved.
|Sunday 18th December||Trials/Training||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 8th January||Trials/Training||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 15th January||Trial/Warm up game v Lancashire||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 22nd January||Training||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 5th February||Training||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 19th February||Training||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 26th February||Match v Warwickshire – away||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 5th March||Training||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 12th March||Training||TBC||1.30pm|
|Sunday 19th March||Match v Oxfordshire – home||TBC||1.30pm|
The NLD U20 Coaching Team have announced the squad that will make the trip to Kettering RFC on Sunday to face East Midlands in their second RFU County Championship Match, kick off 2.30pm.
This follows a hard fought victory over North Midlands that will set the squad up for a tough encounter, no doubt one eye will be on a place in the Midlands Final.
|1||Daniel Roberts||Ilkeston RFC|
|2||Jack Seward||Market Rasen RFC|
|3||Will Walker||Nottingham Academy|
|4||Dan Salt||Sheffield Tigers RFC|
|5||Doug Backhouse||Derby RFC|
|6||Calum Donnnely||Derby RFC/Nottingham Academy|
|7||Tom Cruttenden||Matlock RFC|
|8||Edward Bloodworth||Kesteven RFC|
|9||Max Johnson||Derby RFC|
|10||Harry Collins||Nottingham Trent University|
|11||Brandon Hogan||Lincoln RFC|
|12||Ross Nicholas||Nottingham Corsairs|
|13||Conor Mclean||Nottingham Trent University|
|14||Michael Agyei||Loughborough/ Nottingham Academy|
|15||Alex Goble||Nottingham Trent University|
|16||Max Hodson||Ilkeston RFC|
|17||Dre Forbes||West Bridgford RFC/ Nottingham Academy|
|18||Ayrton Radford||Sheffield Tigers RFC|
|19||Todd Williams||Nottingham Trent University|
|20||Lee Monks||Sheffield Tigers RFC|
|21||Sam Shepherd||Nottingham Trent University|
NLD under 20s championship squad made a good start to their 2016 campaign in the England under 20 Counties Championship with a close fought win 14-10 over an experienced North Midlands squad at Derby RFC on Sunday 6th March.
NLD had only one player carried over from the 2015 campaign which meant it was a young squad. 11 clubs/organisations were represented. The squad gelled very well on and off the pitch considering there had only been six training sessions and one training game.
The first half started with both teams sizing each other up and playing their respective styles of rugby. NLD was able to get the ball wide quickly (a strength of the squad) on a number on a occasions after putting good phases together which produced a well taken try by winger Michael Agyei after only 6 minutes converted from fairly wide out by fly half Harry Collins.
This was followed by an opportunistic try by the North Midlands scrum half Jacob Nash at 16 minutes who spotted a gap though the middle of the NLD defensive line. This followed a number of forward drives and mauls (a style of play that North Midlands used for most of the match).
NLD followed this with another superbly taken try by Michael Agyei after stretching North Midlands wide on a number of occasions – again converted by fly half Harry Collins.
After half time both teams started to made a number of changes – some due to injuries. As can happen – this did interrupt the flow of the game and patterns for both sides. So much so that there was no more scoring until the 77th minute where the NLD defence gave way after severe pressure on their defence and North Midlands scored a forwards try – not converted.
This was an impressive win by a young squad who were as happy defending hard as they were attacking out wide.
Head coach Phil Milton said ” I am really pleased for the lads to come away with a win against a North Midlands squad who had players from clubs playing in considerably higher leagues than most of our NLD squad. This level of rugby helps to develop the lads as players and gives them exposure to regional and national selectors. The team spirit was superb and we will take that into next weekend’s game against East Midlands at Kettering RFC – kicking off at 2.30pm.”