Millfield captain Callum Sheedy and Filton College centre Lucas Slowik have both signed professional terms with Bristol Rugby Club, becoming a full time members of their Academy when they join the squad at the start of the summer.
Sheedy has been one of the key cogs in Millfieldâ€™s brilliant recent 7s form, which has seen them collect six trophies in the last month, including the Surrey 7s, Rosslyn Park 7s, and the Sedbergh 10s, at which Sheedy picked up the Player of the Tournament award on Monday.
Sheedy had made a few appearances for Bath in the U18 Premiership, however an appearance for Bristol United seems to have convinced the ambitious Championship club that Sheedy is their man.
It seems a wise decision on the part of the players, Bristol have been prepared to make full use of their excellent academy this season, with an U18 star of last year, Auguy Slowik (Lucasâ€™ brother), making a number of try scoring Championship appearances, something that the two youngsters will hope to be able to replicate.
Speaking to the clubâ€™s website, Sheedy expressed his excitement in joining the club:
â€œIâ€™m delighted to sign my first professional contract with Bristol Rugby â€“ I believe this is the ideal environment to continue my progression and develop as a player.â€
â€œIâ€™m excited to link up with the squad in the summer and Iâ€™m looking forward to working hard and gaining valuable experience from the senior guys around me.â€
Slowik, who this year became the youngest professional ever to have played for Bristol and scored in the process, said:
â€œIâ€™m delighted to be joining Bristol Rugby â€“ the team I supported growing up. Itâ€™s a massive honour.â€
â€œThe step up to professional level is a huge challenge, but one Iâ€™m looking forward to. I canâ€™t wait to link up with my new team-mates in the summer and will work hard to fight for first team opportunities.â€
The Millfield man, Sheedy, will not be the only Welshman vying for a spot at fly half for the club though, former Welsh international Nicky Robinson is already on the clubs books, while they have also signed Matthew Morgan from the Ospreys for next season.
Morgan is one of a number of players that Bristol have signed for next season as the Championship club, who are desperately bidding for promotion to the Premiership at the end of the year, look to strengthen in a bid to retain Premiership status should they be promoted.
Big names such as Ryan Jones and Dwayne Peel are joining the club as well as former star and electric winger, David Lemi, along with several other new signings.
On Slowikâ€™s signing, Bristolâ€™s Academy Manager, Mike Hall said to the clubâ€™s website:
â€œWe are delighted Lucas is joining us in the full time Academy next season. He has worked hard this year, both with his technical and tactical rugby development and also his strength & conditioning work. â€œ
â€œLucas is a very strong runner and is a real threat ball in hand, as the fans will have seen in the B&I Cup clash versus Gala. Lucas has only been playing in his current position for two seasons so still has a lot to learn, but if he continues to show the same application to his development then I am sure he will make great strides over the next two years.â€
â€œIt is also nice to see a recipient of the BRIS Trustâ€™s Carol Humphreys Memorial Bursary making it through our system into the Full time Academy.â€
Of Sheedy, Hall said:
â€œCallumâ€™s skill set and the way he wants to play the game are an excellent match to how we are looking to develop our style of rugby in the coming seasons, it made sense to bring Callum in to be part of the Academy. Itâ€™s an excellent opportunity for him to further his development.â€
â€œThe coaches at Millfield speak very highly of him and we believe Callum has the attributes to be successful in the professional game.â€
Given that Sheedyâ€™s style of play is very much based around good distribution and communication, encouraging those around him to play an expansive running game, it bodes well for Slowik and his strong running game outside him, suggesting that Bristolâ€™s plans for the future are to be one of the more attractive sides around.
To see more from Bristol Rugby and their original story on signing Callum Sheedy, please follow this link: http://www.bristolrugby.co.uk/news/9443/callum-sheedy-added-to-academy/
Has anyone from your school signed professional terms? If so we would love to hear about it, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can contact us below â€“ weâ€™re always keen to see the progression of todayâ€™s school stars and follow them through as they further their rugby careers.