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Exeter Chiefs Academy Pathway Start Point
Club or School Regional Training Groups 13-16yrs – Cornwall: Louie Tonkin / Richard Phillips. Devon: Marc Dibble These are training groups open to all, run by Devon and Cornwall Counties, and the start point for developing players into the Academy.
13-16 years DPPs – Cornwall: Louie Tonkin / Richard Phillips. Devon: Marc Dibble
The regional training groups, with selection trials run by the Counties, that leads into the Developing Player Programme, DPPs. Training for Devon players takes place at Sandy Park, while for Cornwall it takes place at Truro College. Various small-sided festival games are arranged during this development period to see how players are developing.
13-16yrs PDGs – Cornwall: Louie Tonkin, Richard Phillips. Devon: Ricky Pellow
Small groups are selected from the DPPs called, Player Development Groups, PDGs. These are held again at Sandy Park and Truro College weekly by invitation. Additional PDG groups are invited to train at Sandy Park on home game days prior to first team matches. This group makes up an Academy team at Under-15s level to compete against other Premiership clubs at Harrow in May each year. An Academy squad also competes at the Wellington Under-16s festival over Easter Holidays, again against the other Premier clubs.
13-18 years – Ricky Pellow, Rob Beddard, Keith Brooking and Ruairi Cushion
The Junior Academy group is an invited group meeting at Sandy Park on home games on Saturdays. This group is a high performance group that are still in there development stage
16-18yrs PDGs and EAPs – Cornwall: Marek Churcher. Devon: Rob Gibson
England Academy Players EAPs are selected from the PDG group. Players develop at a different rate so we continue with some players named as PDG players in this age group. There are four different routes for this age group, whilst keeping going with their education. Truro College provides our Cornwall centre; while in Devon there are options at both Ivybridge and Exeter Colleges. The final pathway is our Outreach Group for those that choose a different academic pathway. The three colleges play in a Premier Colleges league on Wednesdays before Christmas – and players from these groups also have the chance to compete in the Premiership Under-18s League, post Christmas.
18-24yrs Senior Academy, EAPs – Ricky Pellow, Haydn Thomas, Rob Gibson
This is the final group before becoming a fully contracted Chiefs player. Senior EAPs are full-time at Sandy Park, but continue working on an educational route for a non-rugby future. This can take very different routes from University to constructional type work. The playing programme for this group is with loan clubs, A league fixtures, University league and eventually the Chiefs team. We now run an Apprenticeship scheme that runs along side this group, with the aim of producing employable people, in playing rugby, coaching, analysis and groundstaff.
A key part of rugby life for any aspiring rugby player, here Rob Beddard of the Exeter Chiefs Strength & Conditioning department outlines the importance of nutrition