Yorkshire Trio join forces for new challenge
The three Yorkshire Rugby Union clubs in the RFU Championship, Leeds Carnegie, Rotherham Titans and Doncaster Knights, have today announced plans for an exciting new challenge between the three to decide the top team in the county this season.
The Yorkshire Regiment Trophy has been approved by the RFU Championship Clubs Committee as a new venture to aid the development of rugby union in the North of England. The Yorkshire Regiment has kindly collaborated with the clubs as a means of strengthening the Yorkshire connection for what is hoped will become an established regional sporting competition.
The race to win the new trophy begins this Friday with Leeds Carnegie entertaining Doncaster Knights at Headingley Carnegie, kick off 8pm. The six meetings between the three sides this season in the RFU Championship will not only earn vital league points but will also be entered into a Yorkshire mini league with the top team being presented with the newly created Yorkshire Regiment Trophy after the final derby meeting of the season when Leeds Carnegie take on Rotherham Titans at Headingley Carnegie on Sunday 31st March.
Leeds Carnegie captain Jacob Rowan and his counterpart from Doncaster Knights, Matt Challinor were joined by Rotherham Titans Toby Freeman at the historic Cliffords Tower in York where they were met by Yorkshire Regiment members Capt Alex Whitaker and WO1 (RSM) Graydon Williams.
The Yorkshire Regiment has a unique rugby heritage within the Army. This stretches back to the first days of Army Rugby over a hundred years ago through its predecessor regiment, The Duke of Wellington's Regiment. The 'Dukes' were the county regiment of the West Riding whose Regimental training depot, built in 1877, was in Halifax. In those early days the 13-a-side game was played in all the schools of the West Riding and beyond within Yorkshire ensuring a steady stream of talented rugby playing soldiers into the Regiment.
This, in turn, attracted officers with rugby flair from across the country and beyond to join the Regiment. Over the years the Regiment's name became synonymous with rugby within the British Army founded on its exceptional record of winning the Army Cup 14 times - more times than any other Regiment - runners up 8 times, eleven members of the Regiment gaining international honours, three representing the British Lions and over 50 members of the Regiment have represented the British Army many of whom also played for the Combined Services.
Following the formation of the Yorkshire Regiment from the three old county regiments of Yorkshire; The Prince of Wales's Own, The Green Howards and the 'Dukes' in 2006 this heritage continues and is reflected in the Regiment's recent successes beyond the Army Rugby Cup including being the Army Rugby League Champions 2004 - 2011, Army Sevens Champions 2007 and 2008 as well as regularly sending teams to play in international competitions such as the Dubai 7s and Stockholm 10s.
The RFU Championship games that will contribute to the Yorkshire Regiment Trophy are as follows:
Leeds Carnegie v Doncaster Knights5th October 2012
Rotherham Titans v Doncaster Knights3rd November 2012
Rotherham Titans v Leeds Carnegie 24th November 2012
Doncaster Knights v Leeds Carnegie15th February 2013
Doncaster Knights v Rotherham Titans9th March 2013
Leeds Carnegie v Rotherham Titans31st March 2013