St Jo’s duo sample St George’s facilities


Two promising Ipswich-based players have spoken about their experience of training at the new home of English football.

St Joseph’s College duo, Karl Wilkins and George Wacokecoke, were selected to go to an England rugby training camp at the FA’s new 330-acre St George’s Park site in Burton-upon-Trent.

The duo, part of the national under-17s squad, are also part of the youth set-up at Northampton Saints and said the experience of training at England football’s new centre was “amazing.”

“It was a really good atmosphere and a really big group of players,” said Wilkins.

“The coaches there were very good and the facilities are great.

“England coach Grahame Rowntree was there too which shows the interest being taken in the youth set-up.”

Wacokecoke added: “It’s an amazing place and it was really good to meet up with the other lads again.”

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Both boys have been to previous training camps with the RFU over the summer and in October, and will attend a four-day event at St George’s Park again next month.

Domestically the pair are just starting their seasons with Northampton in the Premiership Rugby Academies League.

Only Wacokecoke played in the first match, a narrow 10-8 defeat away to their Gloucester counterparts, as Wilkins was injured.

Although he’s already played for Saints this season, Wacokecoke knows there’s no guarantee he’ll make the next squad.

He said: “There’s very hard competition for my position on the wing because there’s two other England under 18s going for the same places.”

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