Leeds Rhinos Foundation has now opened registrations for any players interested in taking part in the Under 16s and Under 18s North vs South Player Development Series this summer.
Last month, the official charity of Leeds Rhinos launched the pioneering new Rugby League development programme for players not connected to a professional club scholarship or academy who are looking to take their next steps towards furthering their rugby league careers and showcase their talents to some of the region’s top coaches.
The game will feature the most promising young stars currently participating in community or school rugby across the city at both Under 16s and Under 18s level, split into two teams representing the age old rivalry of the North/South Leeds divide in relation to the River Aire.
It will be the first time that a ‘North vs South’ fixture has taken place in the city since Leeds Rhinos Foundation ran their successful u13s and u14s challenge fixtures back in 2014, which were highly regarded by both players and coaches alike as a great way to promote player and coach development and were a real highlight of the community rugby calendar.
This exciting six-week development programme will be fully aligned to the Rhinos Talent Pathway with opportunities for progression, providing a unique chance for the stars of tomorrow to experience training in a professional environment and play two competitive fixtures in top class venues (full details to be confirmed).
The following criteria must be met for any players wishing to enrol on the North vs South Player Development Series for 2022:
- Under 16’s- open to all current Year 11 students with a Leeds home postcode or registered with a Leeds-based community club.
- Under 18’s- open to all current Year 12 and 13 students with a Leeds home postcode or registered with a Leeds Rhinos Ambassador Club (FULL LIST HERE).
- Under 18’s players currently playing Open Age or College Rugby League are also encouraged to sign up for this programme.
- Players must not currently be on Scholarship or Academy terms with a professional or semi-professional club.
- Teams will be provided with a North Leeds or South Leeds playing shirt, with players wearing their club or school team’s shorts and socks ‘barbarian style’ to celebrate the community game.
Registrations open Tuesday 14 June 2022 and close on Sunday 3rd July 2022.
Explaining the reasons for re-launching the North vs South programme, Darren Higgins, Head of Rugby League Development for Leeds Rhinos Foundation, said: “What this programme aims to do, is not only provide high quality player development opportunities for local players but help with retaining players in the game and connect to the clubs academy programme and offer different player pathway routes with the programme also being run for younger age groups in future years.
“We will also be looking to remodel our ETP programme in October which will again see more opportunities for players not selected at scholarship level, which will no doubt benefit the game locally and offer ongoing opportunities for aspiring players of all ages.”