Teenager stars out in South Africa

OFFERED a summer of rugby in South Africa, 17-year-old Harry Gooderham jumped at the chance.

The rising rugby star spent seven weeks at the renowned Bishops College rugby side, a school that has produced 39 Springbok international players.

And the former Diss youth is now hoping the amazing experience will lead to him winning honours with both club and country.

Chosen as part of an exchange programme run by Framlingham College, Gooderham was the first from the Suffolk school to play for Bishops Rugby 1st XV.

And the college firsts captain didn’t let them down, overcoming a slight knee injury to star – and score – in the final match in front of 5,000 people.

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He explained: “I started out in the thirds and then worked my way up. I wasn’t sure I would make the first team but it was always my aim and I had to work very hard to get the call-up.

“I was really nervous before the final match, but as soon as I ran out, the noise was overwhelming and made for an incredible atmosphere. To play a big match in front of thousands – something I have never done before – and score a try was a real highlight of my time there.”

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Gooderham, who was with Diss since Under-9s and still speaks very highly of the club, has also played for Eastern Counties and is currently looking to secure a contract with the Northampton Saints – something he hopes his South African experience will help with.

He explained: “I was extremely keen to go out there and get the experience of a completely different culture and style of rugby. The level of rugby at Bishops was first class and the standard was really high with three current Bishops players also with South Africa Under-18s.

“It was a great life experience and a great thing to add to my rugby CV back in England.”

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