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University of Worcester and Worcester Warriors agree landmark partnership



Worcester Warriors and the University of Worcester have agreed a landmark multi-year partnership ahead of the 2022/23 season.

This will see the two organisations embark on an ambitious collaboration to help grow women’s rugby at the club and inspire more women to take up studies at the University alongside elite rugby.

To reflect the significance of the partnership, Warriors Women, who compete in the Allianz Premier 15s, will now be renamed ‘University of Worcester Warriors’.

The University’s name and logo will feature on the front and back of the women’s home and away playing shirts, while the new team name ‘University of Worcester Warriors’ and the Warriors logo will feature on the front. The University’s branding will also be prominent throughout Sixways Stadium via LED boards and interview backdrops.

In addition, the partnership will give female students the opportunity to combine their academic life with playing rugby in an elite environment at Sixways Stadium through a number of scholarships and business placements.

Warriors and the University will combine to increase opportunities for women and girls at all levels to participate in sport and maximise their potential. The University will also draw upon its experiences of working with its own female sport franchises in women’s basketball, women’s wheelchair basketball and Severn Stars netball to contribute towards the current and ongoing success of Warriors’ elite and development programmes for women.

Warriors Managing Director Peter Kelly said: “This is a significant partnership for both Worcester Warriors and the University of Worcester.

“With the power of professional sport, it is a fantastic opportunity to drive awareness in the UK and overseas and help attract even more students to our fantastic university and wonderful city.

“This ambitious partnership will inspire the next generation of students to strive for a career in sport, whether that is on field or off field, and as a club we are extremely excited to see what we can achieve together.”

University of Worcester Warriors Director of Rugby, Jo Yapp attended the University, where she undertook an undergraduate degree, before embarking on a PGCE there.

She went on to be capped 70 times by England and has since helped develop women’s sport at Sixways.

“I am very appreciative of the support the University of Worcester gave me when I was a student there as it enabled me to balance my studies with playing rugby for England and Worcester,” Yapp said.

“The women’s game has developed significantly since then and the game at international and club level is now much more professional but players still need support on and off the pitch to enable them to fulfil their potential.

“The partnership between Worcester Warriors and the University of Worcester is a significant development in encouraging and inspiring more women rugby players to study at the university while continuing to grow and strengthen the women’s game at Sixways.”

Professor David Green CBE DL, Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive of the University of Worcester, said: “The 21st Century is proving to be the century for the rise of women’s sport.

“At the University of Worcester, we are deeply committed to increasing the participation of women and girls in sport and truly believe in sport for all.

“We are absolutely delighted with this latest new dimension to our longstanding partnership work with Worcester Warriors. Our work together will enable and encourage many more girls and women to participate in sport whilst gaining a first-class education.”

For information on courses at University of Worcester visit or for application enquiries telephone 01905 855111 or email [email protected]

Images & Content from Worcester Warriors





Sale Sharks have agreed a deal to sign Fiji captain Waisea Nayacalevu from French Top14 side Toulon. 

The explosive centre, who starred for his country during the recent World Cup, has signed a one-year contract with an option for a further year. 

He will join up with Alex Sanderson’s Sharks squad ahead of the start of the 2024/25 Gallagher Premiership season. 

Waisea, 33, said: “I’ve watched the Premiership for a long time and it’s always been in the back of my mind that I would love to play there one day and experience rugby in England. 

“Now that opportunity has arrived and I’m really, really happy and grateful. I’m so excited to get over there and join the boys and see how I can contribute to the team. 

“I have spoken to Telusa Veainu and he only has positive things to say about the club and about Manchester. 

“I’m looking forward to playing with some of the guys I’ve played against, like Tom Curry and George Ford. But I also know there are a lot of really talented young players in the Sale Sharks squad and I’m excited to share my experience and help them develop as much as I can.  

“I told Alex that it’s what I’ve been doing for the last few years of my career and it’s something I’m passionate about.” 

Nayacalevu, who stands at 6’4” and weighs in at 16st 7lb, spent ten years at Top14 side Stade Français before making the switch to Toulon in 2022.  

He has won 34 caps for Fiji, slotting in at both centre and on the wing, and captained his country at last year’s World Cup, where the Pacific Islanders made the quarter-finals, losing 30-24 to England in Marseille. 

He also famously scored for Fiji in their memorable pre-World Cup win against England at Twickenham. 

Images & Content from Sale Sharks Rugby

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Falcons star to join Saracens



Phil Brantingham to join Saracens

Tuesday 05 March 2024 Written by: Tom Grisedale

Prop-forward Phil Brantingham will leave Newcastle Falcons in the summer to join Saracens.

The 22-year-old has played 25 games for his home town club, and leaves with the thanks and best wishes of everyone at the Falcons.

Chairman of rugby Matt Thompson said: “Phil has done well for us and we made him a good offer to stay here.

“We respect his decision and wish him all the best for his move in the summer, but between now and then he will be fully committed to finishing the season strongly for Newcastle Falcons.”

Source – Newcastle Falcons Rugby

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Sale Sharks can confirm that forward Cobus Wiese will leave the club at the end of the season to return to South Africa. 

The 26-year-old lock has played almost 80 games for the club and scored five tries since joining from the DHL Stormers ahead of the 2020/21 season. 

He played a key role last year as Sale reached the Premiership final, and this season he has featured a further 13 times for Alex Sanderson’s side. 

Alex said: “Cobus will be missed by all of us on so many levels. He’s the most polite and courteous of people off the field, but the most wildly excitable man on the field, and on a night out. 

“To say Cobus wears his heart on his sleeve is to do him a disservice with regards to his emotional commitment for which his body has paid the price on occasion.  

“He leads by example and has earnt the respect and adoration of the group both on a professional and a personal level. We wish him every success and happiness with his move back home.” 

Everyone at Sale Sharks would like to thank Cobus for his contribution to the club and the team during his time here and we wish him all the very best for the future.  

Images & Content from Sale Sharks Rugby

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