The Yorkshire Carnegie Junior Development Squad Under-16s begin their playing programme for the 2015-16 season this Sunday 28th February at Pontefract RUFC at 1.30pm. This is the first of three events that culminate in a week long residential at Wellington College.

The competition at Pontefract involves Sale Sharks, Newcastle Falcons, Yorkshire Carnegie and an ERDPP select team in a four way 15 a side round robin tournament.  The ERDPP (England Rugby Developing Players programme) team has been selected from those players who have performed well across Yorkshire in the ERDPP this season and gives them the opportunity to play against the strongest players from across the north. 

This year has seen the Academy U16 season changing, to include competition elements later in the season, concluding with a residential camp at Wellington College for all 14 RFU regional academies in the last week of March. Yorkshire Carnegie working alongside Yorkshire County management have adapted the wider player development pathway so that there are more opportunities for more players as the season goes on, rather than just for the Yorkshire Carnegie Junior Development Squad beyond Christmas. 

All players from within the Yorkshire ERDPP at the U16 age group have been monitored through the ERDPP programme to be able to offer opportunities to those who have been continually working at a high standard and developing both inside and outside of the satellite sessions. From this festival there are still opportunities for players to push to become a part of the Yorkshire Carnegie JDS leading into the Wellington festival later in the year as well as an alternative group of players identified for a combined county/ERDPP tour. We are hopeful that this model with extended opportunities for 2015-16 will allow those later developing players to come through the system more effectively. 

On Sunday 6th March the Yorkshire Carnegie Junior Development Squad travel to Leicester Grammar School where they will play in a three way competition with Gloucester and London Irish, this festival draws the build up competitions to a close before the residential Wellington Festival at the end of March where all 14 RFU regional academies will be involved in a development programme of workshops, position specific clinics and inter academy competition. The festival will be a great opportunity for all of those involved to learn from working with the best players in the Country.

Danny Wild, Junior Development Squad Manager is excited about the new look season and the opportunities available for these young players.  He said: "This is the first Wellington Festival as part of the RFU’s player pathway programme at under 16s. The next 6 weeks are going to be a challenge for the players, where they will learn a lot about themselves and the game of rugby.

"First things first, I’m excited about seeing the JDS players at Pontefract this weekend as well as the other players identified from across the County who have been involved in the ERDPP. There are opportunities up for grabs for all of these players to stake their claim on a place at the Wellington Festival.”
Junior Development Squad players:
Barney Vaughan, Billy Nicholls, Oli Raynor, Ben Carlile, Edward Martin, Harrison Savage, Jack Mann, Matt Burke, Faraaz Anjum, Chris Jackson, Eden Kelly, Max Hanson, Lewis Ebert-Moran, Ted Wainwright, Joe Green, Kai Ramrattan, Morgan Bunting, Tom Stephenson, Cail Cookland, Sam Veall, Jack Kennell, Jack Bodman, Kieran Wilyman, Harvey Morrision, Jacob Mounsey, Seth Adams, Joe Gatus, Ciaran Gaffney, Harry Jackson, Joshua Unthank, Robson Jones

ERDPP Select XV:
Seb Bijister, Max Courtis, Harry Kelly, Quintin McGrory-Hill, Daniel Watson, Matthew Dobbie, Thomas Flannery, Hugo Hayes, Angus Wilson, Elliot Clarke, George Carey, Marco Fummo, Brandon Leggett, Kieran Wilde, Alvaro Casas, Ryan Gibson, Jacob Tansey, Tom Ashton, George Wright, Steven Botham, Luke Harrison, Joe Parry, Connor Stevenson, Oliver Wigglesworth, Sam Austin, William Forrest, Harrison Emmett-Lee, Adam Hopkinson