The Saracens squad have left a lasting legacy in Bermuda after spending a successful week working with coaches and schools to promote the game and raise money for local your rugby on the island.
Culminating in a 62-21 victory against a Bermuda International Select XV watched by a crowd of more than 2,500, the squad began their week by visiting four local schools and spent a morning coaching more than 200 children, many of who had little or no exposure to rugby.
“To have a squad like Saracens visit Bermuda and encourage our school children to play rugby rather than the more recognised Bermudan sports is simply fantastic,” explained Co-organiser Gareth Nokes.
“To see the kids smiling and thoroughly enjoying their time with these professional players is a dream come true. There is undoubtedly talent in Bermuda and we hope to see one of our kids playing for Saracens one day!”
Along with visiting the schools, forwards coach Alex Sanderson then led a coach the coaches’ session with coaches from a wide range of sports exploring areas such as developing a successful culture and how to get the best from the players.
A tag rugby tournament on the picturesque Elbow Beach was another highlight of the week and in a dramatic final, the KPMG team led by the Select XV’s captain Geordan Murphy were winners.
Chris Silvester of Validus Re, the sponsors of the event, commented: “The intensity of the competition and the quality of the rugby was excellent. This is the first time we’ve done something like this in Bermuda and we can’t wait to do it again!”
A corporate golf day at the stunning Tuckers Point Golf Club saw the team from National Australia Bank winning the day with Nils Mordt captain their side.
The match on Friday was against an International Select XV including Geordan Murphy, Shaun Perry, Simon Taylor, George Chuter, Anton Van Zyl and Hanyani Shimage as well as a number of the USA and Canadian national players.
Jackson Wray scored a hat-trick for Saracens in the match that also included a brace for Charlie Hodgson.
The week remains on course to reach its financial target of $50,000 for local youth rugby in Bermuda and organiser David Tucker said: “From Gareth Nokes, myself and the Bermuda Rugby Football Union we cannot thank Saracens enough for choosing to come to Bermuda and raising awareness of rugby on our island. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did and we look forward to welcoming you back in the near future!”
Saracens would like to thank the Bermuda Rugby Football Union; the good people of Bermuda and everyone who helped make our visit to Bermuda such a memorable one.