It's time to decide the coveted 2019-20 Rugby World Team of the Year winner. So if your team has stood out from the crowd this season, send in your nomination now
Could you be the 2019-20 Rugby World Team of the Year?
The Rugby World Team of the Year award will be decided shortly and we’re inviting amateur sides from anywhere in the world to send in their entries.
Bournemouth claimed the prize last year after a phenomenal season of club growth that was capped by the record-breaking first XV, runaway winners of the South-West Premier league.
The promoted Dorset side found life in National Two South a great deal harder and when the RFU decided to suspend the season because of the pandemic, Bournemouth were in the relegation position. They will be back in South-West Premier next season.
“We feel we built some excellent foundations towards the latter end of this season which we look forward to building upon,” said the coaches in a joint online message.
So who will take the mantle this year? Our successful team will in all likelihood have claimed silverware this season, but success comes in many forms.
For example, our 2012 winners Old Bristolians not only swept to a league and vase double but used the tragic death of second-team captain Robbie Stuart as a catalyst for rapid expansion and selfless charity work. The club had raised nearly £140,000 for CLIC Sargent at the time of their Rugby World award.
Sale’s Josh Beaumont got his hands on the trophy in 2013 as captain of Durham University before it returned to Surrey.
Cobham U18, with a squad containing Jack Clifford and Madison Hughes, had won in 2011 and three years later it was the turn of Farnham to fly the flag for the Home Counties. The club where Jonny Wilkinson started his rugby journey, Farnham enjoyed success at both ends of the scale in 2014, with their thriving mini section – they took 300 youngsters to a beach rugby festival in Devon – evidence of their rounded approach.
And then Battersea Ironsides, where England prop Kyle Sinckler rocked up as an eight-year-old to try rugby for the first time, were able to add our coveted cup to their cabinet.
Ironsides won an historic treble that year, a feat matched by our 2016 Team of the Year Heriot’s. The Edinburgh club won the Premiership, Scottish Cup and Charity Shield, playing with a panache that lit up the game north of the border.
Manchester took the honours in 2017 after arresting a spectacular slide in swashbuckling style. The South Lancashire & Cheshire One trophy was tangible evidence that you can come back from the depths of despair and they have advanced their goal of being “the best amateur club we can be”.
Then, in 2018, it was the turn of Drybrook, a village club from Gloucestershire, to get their hands on our trophy after punching way above their weight.
Now we need a team worthy of following in their footsteps and those of current holders Bournemouth. So, have you swept all opponents aside? Have you worked tirelessly to boost playing numbers, or even just survive? Have you a story to tell that could inspire others?
If your team has impressed in one way or another over the 2019-20 campaign, seize the moment by nominating your team.
Already this season we’ve seen monthly awards for the likes of Glossop and Stamford in the Midlands, Sunderland, with their ex-pro footballer Leon Ryan, and King’s Ely, a Cambridgeshire school thriving after reinstating rugby as a games option.
So can you go one better by winning the big one? If you think your side – whether men, women or youth – merits the Rugby World Team of the Year award, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org to explain why.
The current lockdown means we are unable to arrange a team picture, so entrants will need to provide a high-res photo.
Don’t delay, send in your nomination now!
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