Exeter Chiefs at Penwith College

Exeter Chiefs held their U15 rugby training at Penwith College on Wednesday evening in preparation for their upcoming matches against Newport Gwent Dragons, Cardiff, Worcester & Bristol culminating in the pinnacle festival held at Harrow School where they play against all the other Premiership Rugby Academies. The evening was led by Matt Jess a former Penwith College student who has played over 100 games for Exeter Chiefs and is now working with the next crop of talented players within the Academy at Chiefs. He was very impressed with the facilities on offer at Penwith College and the standard of the Cornish players hoping to be selected for this match programme.

The session was part of the Cornwall Developing Players Programme (DPP) managed by Richard Siveter, who also teaches and heads up the Rugby Academy at Penwith College. He said; ‘it was fantastic to have Matt Jess come down to work with the Cornish players who are potentially the next cohort of Chiefs in the future. The players have immense respect for Matt and responded well to his coaching because of his wealth of Premiership experience. That coupled with the fact he is local and studied at Penwith College shows there is a realistic pathway from grass roots to the elite section of the game. This really helps to motivate the Cornish players who can access this top level of coaching through the DPP programme and at Penwith College to go back into their clubs and schools better players for these experiences.’

Penwith College Director, Martin Tucker said; ‘It is great to have Matt Jess back at the College having taught him here previously. This really embodies the spirit at Penwith College where former students are returning home to give something back to the institutions that helped them get to where they are now. We have a host of successful graduates from Penwith who have gone on to achieve sporting and academic honours and welcome them to speak to current students about their experiences and how that can help others to achieve their ambitions. Sport is real focal point at Penwith and we want this to continue as it is well documented how sport can have a positive impact and help develop all aspects of students’ lives.’

The DPP programme runs sessions across Cornwall for players from U13 to U16 and welcome new players to join regardless of ability. They can search for application forms via the Cornwall RFU website under Youth Development or follow the Facebook page ‘Cornwall Rugby Developing Players Programme’. Similarly if you wish to find out more about sporting and academic opportunities at Penwith College then come along to their open day on Saturday 25th November, 10am to 3pm to talk to the staff and students about what is on offer and how you could potentially become their next successful graduate.