Foundation: Doncaster Rugby League Academy gets underway at Club Doncaster.Another new academic year has begun at the Club Doncaster Foundation and the brand new Rugby Academy has also officially launched with the team playing their first ever matches.
Following the first week of term for the students, on Wednesday the Academy played their first ever games in a pre-season nine-a-side tournament held at Oulton Raiders RLFC in Leeds.
With students of the Foundation representing Doncaster Rugby League, the Academy faced the likes of Newcastle Thunder, Leeds City College and Wakefield College.
The launch of the Rugby Academy follows closely in the footsteps of the successful Football Academy which has been running for a number of years, where students represent Doncaster Rovers and it is hoped that success can be emulated by the new team.
Wednesday's tournament was held as a warm up for the new season, where the team will be competing in the Yorkshire Rugby League College's Division 2.
Speaking about the tournament, Head Coach, Adam Payne said: "It was great to finally get underway with our first games ahead of the new season. We played some good opposition and it will be good to use it as a benchmark to see how much we progress throughout the campaign.
"It was nice also for myself to see the players in action in a competitive environment for the first time and I am sure we will continue to improve game on game.
"During the short period we have been together, the team has become very close, they are all very supportive of each other and they have embraced the whole Club Doncaster spirit."
Prop forward Kieran Coates who made his debut for the Academy was thrilled to get underway with Club Doncaster.
"I was pleased with how it went for our first ever game, it was good to play in the pre-season tournament so we can see who we will be coming up against in our league," said the 16-year-old.
"I can't wait to play more games as we all look to improve. It is a really good setup here at the Foundation; I think the next two years will be a great experience in sport and education.”
Doncaster Rugby League Chief Executive, Carl Hall added: "It has been a long term dream of mine for Doncaster Rugby League to have an Academy and it is great that that dream has finally become a reality.
"This is just the beginning and another positive step in the future of the Club and the Foundation; it is fantastic that we are getting even more young people playing the sport.”
"I have no doubt, that as the Club Doncaster Foundation Rugby Academy progresses over the years, that Doncaster Rugby League will benefit by being able to nurture youngsters of our own in the future."
For more information about the Club Doncaster Foundation Rugby and Football Academies visit: www.clubdoncasterfoundation.co.uk