St John Fisher: Dewsbury school pupils take home Rugby League National and Yorkshire Cup titles

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Students and staff at St John Fisher Catholic Voluntary Academy in Dewsbury, are celebrating after the Year 11 girls’ team took home this year’s Rugby League National and Yorkshire Cup titles.

Representing the Kirklees area at the Yorkshire Cup, the team emerged undefeated after a closely fought regional final.

The St John Fisher students then went on to sail through the national qualifiers in Leigh, before taking home the trophy in the national finals held at Featherstone Rovers.

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This will be the third time that the team have achieved these impressive accolades throughout their school career, with only Covid-19 cancellations holding them back from a clear championship run.

St John Fisher have been crowned National and Yorkshire Rugby Champions.St John Fisher have been crowned National and Yorkshire Rugby Champions.
St John Fisher have been crowned National and Yorkshire Rugby Champions.

The competitions form part of the Rugby Football League’s flagship Champion Schools programme, which is open to all secondary schools across England and Wales.

Featuring local, regional and national tournaments, the programme supports the development of the sport’s next generation and for many talented young players it can be an important stepping stone to taking up the sport professionally.

Lauren Egan, head of girls’ PE at the school on Oxford Road, which is part of The Blessed Peter Snow Catholic Academy Trust, said: “There are simply not enough words to describe how proud I am of the St John Fisher year 11 girls’ rugby team for this amazing achievement.

“As undefeated national and Yorkshire champions in their field, they have shown just how hard they have worked together as a team in order to perfect their game and showcase their talents.”

The St John Fisher year 11 girls’ rugby team.The St John Fisher year 11 girls’ rugby team.
The St John Fisher year 11 girls’ rugby team.

These students now follow in the footsteps of former St John Fisher students, like Caitlin Beevers, who started her competitive rugby career in the exact same way, as a National Champion and Yorkshire Cup winner.

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There is no doubt that the competitions open up many doors for students like Caitlin, who is now vice captain of the open age women's Leeds Rhinos squad, and a regular player in the England squad.

It is hoped that many of the students in this winning side will go on to have successful careers in rugby league, with some already signed with Leeds Rhinos and York Valkyrie.

Karl Mackey, Headteacher, added: “Huge congratulations to the entire team for rightly earning their place on the Rugby League Champion Schools Roll of Honour, after once again taking home these prestigious trophies.

“It is fantastic to see these students consistently putting our school values into action, showing ‘commitment, aspiration, respect and excellence’ in abundance.

“They are also inspiring role models for our younger students, who can see that through hard work and giving your personal best, you can achieve incredible things.”