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Gloucester’s second source of players

Even though it would not be accurate to class Gloucester as one of the major forces in English rugby union at the moment, there’s no doubt that they are still one of the most reputable clubs in the UK. They are constantly producing top quality players and while most clubs in the country utilise a standard academy system, Gloucester have two sources of youth. The first is their standard academy, yet it is their second which appears to be the most successful these days. The club are situated just down the road from Hartpury College – a specialised sporting college that holds some of the best facilities in the country. With the senior Gloucester team also utilising the college for training purposes, it will be no surprise to hear that they have signed many players who have attended and impressed at the establishment.

Following on from the above, we take a look at just some of the players that Gloucester have poached from Hartpury and made into Aviva Premiership stars.

Dave Lewis

At just 23-years-old, it’s incredible to see that this former Hartpury College prospect made his debut in the 2007/08 campaign. Nevertheless, he has slowly established himself as one of Gloucester’s key players and has made the scrum-half position his own through recent years. The fact he was named in the England under 20s squad a couple of years ago speaks volumes about his success and Gloucester probably can’t believe their luck that they managed to sign the player without paying a transfer fee to another club.

Jonny May

However, while Lewis may have made a very positive impression on Gloucester, there’s no doubt that Jonny May is the most significant player to arrive from Hartpury College. The outside center made his debut for the club in August 2009 and is now a seasoned regular for the team. However, most people will know May for his exploits with England Saxons, after receiving a shock call-up in June 2012. It would be fair to say that his impact on the international team was incredible as well, after scoring two tries in his opening game for his country as they beat South Africa on their own turf.

Charlie Sharples

While Charlie Sharples may have initially come from Hong Kong, much of his education was conducted in Gloucester after attending high school in the city, as well as Hartpury College. It would be fair to describe Sharples as the most high profile player to arrive from the college, after the 23-year-old made his debut for the full England squad in 2011. As you would expect from an England Elite international, his domestic career with Gloucester has also been hugely impressive and the winger has been a big source of tries in club rugby.

Hartpury can also boast many other top rugby players to come through their college education system, with Tom Savage and Henry Trinder being other players that also play for Gloucester. Moreover, with players continuing to progress to the Gloucester team at such a fast rate, it looks as though the college is taking an Americanised approach and acting as a feeder source for the Aviva Championship outfit.

Author Biography

Liam is a big fan of rugby union and regularly publishes a bonus offer in relation to the sport. As well as rugby union, he lists football (or soccer, to the American readers), tennis and rugby league.

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