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Calcutta Cup on display at Highland Rugby Club

By Staff Reporter

Highland Rugby Club will play host to one of the sport’s most highly regarded coaches tonight – as well as the Calcutta Cup in Inverness tonight.

Scottish Rugby’s development team have this week embarked on a roadshow around the Caledonia North region.

Five different places in the region will host the roadshow, which will have visited Deeside, Elgin Academy Huntly and Rothes before finishing up at Canal Park tonight.

At each of these events there have been player and coach development workshops and an introduction to community rugby opportunities, such as Tartan Touch and youth sevens festivals.

But the main event comes when all five groups congregate at Highland for a coaching masterclass with Magic Academy co-founder John Fletcher.

Fletcher received international honours as a player, being selected to play for an England A team.

As a coach, he joined the academy at Newcastle Falcons before becoming the club’s director of rugby, with overall responsibility for teams that included the likes of Jonny Wilkinson and Toby Flood.

He started working with England Rugby a decade ago serving as head coach for the under-18s team, focusing on player development.

He has mentored and helped to bring England stars through the Performance Player Pathway, including brothers Mako and Billy Vunipola, Owen Farrell and George Ford.

Director of rugby development, Sheila Begbie, believes the roadshow is an opportunity for the Scottish Rugby Union to give something back to clubs at a grassroots level.

“This roadshow will give us a chance to say thank you for all the hard work that club members and volunteers put in to take part in the game of rugby and their contribution to the game,” Begbie explained.

“It is expected this will become an annual event around different regions in Scotland, and where better to hold our first one than in some of the most scenic areas in the country.”

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