Divisional Player Development Chairs (DPDCs), Constituent Body (CB) Pathway Leads, Schools & Colleges, RFU Player Pathway Officer (PPO) and Regional Academies staff.
- To provide strategic leadership for the Regional Player Pathway Group (RPPG)
- To deliver the strategic RPPG delivery plans
- To champion the best interests of the games talented young players
- To ensure that the terms of reference for the RPPG are adhered to
- To support the identification and recruitment of appropriate group members
- To communicate and share all relevant information between stakeholders
- Organise meetings and meeting agenda with the Academy Manager and RFU PPO
- To oversee the relationship between Harlequins and its partners Surrey & Sussex clubs and schools.
- To escalate any appropriate issues to the most appropriate RFU staff member
- Ensure all parties abide by the age grade playing calendar in the structured season.
- To deliver and report on the performance (every 3 months) to the RPPG delivery plans to Player Development Sub Committee via the DPDC.
- Annually schedule CB, Developing Player Program (DPP) and Regional Academy player development activities across the Region, ensuring that these are aligned to the Age Grade Playing Calendar and designed to alleviate programming conflicts on players.
- Oversee the implementation of the DPP and CB Age Grade Teams across the region, and support the approval process for RFU PPO authorisation.
- Receive and disseminate the published Player Development Group (PDG) and England Academy Player (EAP) lists. Ensure that all stakeholders respect the priorities.
- Ensure the CB, Regional Academy and RFU Coach Development Plan meets the wants and needs of the partnership
- Monitor the appointment process to DPP and CB positions.
- Monitor the process of player exits from Pathway Programs to ensure players are retained in the game through effective links with CB’s and schools.
- At all times to champion the best interests of the games talented young players.
The post holder is accountable to the Player Development Sub Committee for the successful delivery of the responsibilities outlined above. This is via the Divisional Player Development Chair. The term for the position is 3 years subject to annual review with a maximum of 9 years.
Surrey U17 Development Program
There were 130 Surrey and 90 Sussex under 17 players released from Feb 2021 DPP who were invited to be part of the new U17 Development Program where training takes place once a month from September to April as well as 3 matches and 3 extra training nights in April to May. Surrey are averaging 60 and Sussex 40 players at each session. The players were split into groups and will remain part of the smaller groups throughout the process.
Players who were not ever part of DPP have had the opportunity to be nominated to attend a U17 development session. Many of the players are now at an Ace school and away Monday to Friday but remain in contact with the CB Rep managers.
U18 County Boys
All last year’s U17 were automatically invited back to an assessment as well as open invite that went out to clubs for nominations. Ninety turned up at the 1st trial/assessment and 30 at a second assessment day. A squad of 40 has been taken forward for the U18 team where they will have 2 training sessions and 3 playing opportunities this season.
To keep consistency across the pathway U20 CB coaches have been invited to join the training sessions and match day experience. Under 18 players will get a special tour of Surrey University on Open Day and have the link between Quins and Surrey University explained.
Surrey U20 Squad
Continuity of pathway in place. Trials matches take place and coaches attend the Under 21 competition that takes place throughout Christmas and Easter to identify players.
Head of Academy Chim Gale has overseen the progress and growth of the Club’s pathway since joining from Worcester Warriors in 2019.
The Club has seen a number of Academy players progress to become regular first-team starters over the last three seasons, with Louis Lynagh, Jack Kenningham and Sam Riley just a few examples of the Club’s most recent home-grown stars.
Gale and his team have also significantly expanded the pathway system at all levels, including our formal relationship with Gordon’s School.