The Sidmouth Under-7 and Under-8 teams had been scheduled to meet teams from Withycombe last weekend, but the Saturday rain deemed the pitches unplayable.

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However, what was put on instead of competitive action was a training session with former England ladies rugby captain Jo Yapp.

The brilliant sunshine created a perfect atmosphere for players from both clubs to train and play together.

Yapp has 70 caps for England and played in three world cups and was England’s Player of the Year in 2003.

Jo took the players though their paces concentrating on the basic passing and evasion techniques before setting the players off on trial matches.

Both sides managed to show the former England star how much they had learned in their first and second seasons so far with mixed Sidmouth and Withycombe teams showing a variety of skills and vision.

Thomas Grove especially highlighted the importance of strategic vision with long passes that put his team in for a number of tries.

The Sidmouth Girls team also showed that they could hold their own against the boys playing well in the mixed teams. A special mention should be made for Tilly Bennett who got the record four tags/tackles in a row in her team.

Thanks must go in abundance to Jo Yapp who selflessly volunteered for the coaching and to Withycombe for hosting the event.

The youngsters and coaches both learned a lot from her.

The Sidmouth younger teams look forward to using what they have learned on their upcoming Cornish Tour this year.

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