Exiles Stars Reward Sultan’s Ambition

In February HMS Sultan were announced as one of the 12 Premiership Rugby Pro Winners. The announcement particularly mentioned the efforts of the team:

“Winners of this year’s QBE Rugby Pro include the first XV at HMS Sultan and Upton-upon-Severn RFC. The judges were impressed by the commitment and desire to play rugby shown by the players from HMS Sultan and their close affiliation with Naomi House children’s hospice.”

Last week the team had a coaching session led by two of London Irish’s coaches and run by three of their stars.

Mike Crump - Coach
Brian Lee - Coach
Ross Sampson - Scotland VIIs & London Irish scrum half
Topsy Ojo - England Saxons and London Irish winger
James Buckland England A and London Irish hooker
Sultan Coach - Mark Thompson

Coach Mark Thompson saw his side put through their paces with drills that looked at individual and team attack along with scrummaging and line out work. Having already secured the Portsmouth Area Cup Final this year they will now be looking to target a 2012 Navy Cup win and avenge last year’s defeat at the hands of HMS Seahawk.

Scrummaging with James Buckland
Individual Attack
Improving the Lineout
Team Attack
HMS Sultan's Players with Topsy Ojo, Ross Sampson and James Buckland

Malta Stun Sweden

Kyle Mason - Malta and Royal Navy

Navy Rugby’s loose head prop, Kyle Mason, was part of the team that stunned both Sweden and the rest of their European Nations Group with a 22 – 14 victory in Valletta on Saturday.  Prior to the match Sweden were unbeaten in their group but Malta are gradually making their island home a rugby fortress having not lost there since November 2010.

The only cloud on Kyle’s horizon will be that for the second match running he picked up a yellow card.  He will return to the Navy squad as they finalise their preparations for the Army Navy match at Twickenham on Saturday.

Someone who will be very pleased with the victory is ‘Diamond’ Jim Hunter.  The former Navy Rugby and Fleet Air Arm stalwart is now the islands Rugby Development Manager with the tasking of bringing through future generations of players for Malta.  His task will be a little easier after Saturday.

The win temporarily lifts Malta to second in the league although Latvia have a match in hand and also should see Malta climb into the top 40 when the International Rugby Board publish the new standings on Monday..

A full report from the Malta Times can be viewed by clicking here.

Proud Heritage Quiz

Below is the latest question in this season’s Proud Heritage quiz. Having managed to get past the peak loading of the two matches against the Marine Nationale and the day of rugby against the Royal Air Force I hope to get the answer out before the end of the week and also add a couple more players to the great players list.  Also before the end of the week I will be publishing the fourth and final (for this season) invitational select XV.

Which former Navy player became the first player in the history of the British Lions to use air transport to fly out as a replacement on their tour of New Zealand and Australia?  On arrival he became the youngest player in the tour party.  Before then the youngest player was also a Navy man and Devonport Services colleague.  Can you name him?



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