FLEET FLAGSHIP PLAYS HOST TO ROYAL NAVY RUGBY
A buffet reception was held on board the Royal Navy's Fleet Flagship, HMS ARK ROYAL, at the end of January to thank the Royal Navy Rugby Union Sponsors for their continued support to the Game. The event was extremely well attended and saw Rolls Royce, VT, Thales, Flagship, KooGa, Volkswagen - Peter Cooper, Aramark, QinetiQ and Charles Trywitt in attendance. The assembled guests were given a presentation on the programme leading up to the Inter Services fixtures by the Navy’s Director of Rugby, Lt Cdr Geraint Ashton Jones. Geraint was in buoyant mood and declared that he was “very confident about the programme and preparations by all the Royal Navy teams in the lead up to the Inter Service competition”. The highlight of the evening was the announcement of the Royal Navy Rugby Union Captains for the Senior XV and Women. PO Dave Pascoe (RFANSU) and CPO Paula Bennett-Smith (FOST) were chosen to lead their respective teams, based on their track records as players and their obvious leadership ability. Geraint Ashton Jones highlighted the fact that both players are widely respected by their peers and each set high standards - both as players and team members. However he was quick to add that “being selected as Captain is no guarantee of selection for the IS matches. Competition for places is very tough this year and the Captains will earn their places alongside their team-mates.” The Navy takes on the RAF on Wednesday 16 April in Portsmouth. The Senior XV plays at the United Services Ground, Burnaby Road, kick off at 1900. This match will be preceded by RN Women v RAF Women (KO 1400) and RN Veterans v RAF Veterans (KO 1600). The annual Royal Navy v Army match at Twickenham is on Saturday 3 May 2008, kick off at 1500. The match is preceded by the Combined Services Under 23s versus England Students Under 23s, at 1200. Tickets for both matches are available by telephoning the Royal Navy ticket hotline on 0870 444 6633 or booking online at www.navyrugbyunion.co.uk. These matches are preceded by RN Women v Army Women and RN Veterans v Army Veterans; both matches will be played at Kneller Hall, Twickenham (next to the main stadium), on Saturday 3 May, kick off 1030 on adjacent pitches. Details of all Navy matches can be found on the RNRU website.