Fax deal with college aids Super League bid

Students Daniel Richardson and Graham Rowlinson with mascot Halicat
Students Daniel Richardson and Graham Rowlinson with mascot Halicat

A LANDMARK deal has been sealed between Halifax Rugby League and Calderdale College in a huge boost to the club’s Super League campaign.

The club has welcomed the college on board as its new education partner, which will strengthen links between rugby league academy students and Fax’s under-23 side.

The agreement will also give the club a training base in Calderdale for the first time in years as it makes use of the new sports facilities being built at the college’s Francis Street site.

The all-weather outdoor sports pitch, full-size sports hall and gym are expected to open in September.

Matt Turner, of Halifax RLFC, said: “We have had links with Calderdale College for a few years now but we have always been looking at ways to improve it.

“When the plans for the new sports facility came out, it was an obvious avenue to go down, and we feel the training facilities for the team will be excellent in the coming years.

“It’s also great to have them so closely linked with the new under-23 squad.

“We hope to see a few Calderdale College students make the progression for future years and we are certainly laying down the foundations for an excellent set-up.”

The club will also have access to fitness testing and lifestyle checks, plus nutrition and well-being advice from the college.

In return, the college’s rugby league academy students will get coaching sessions and the chance to progress to the Halifax under-23 team.

Fax director Mike Riley said: “If we play this right and we get to Super League, we hope we’ll be able to develop our first team primarily from the Calderdale area.”

Women’s participation in the sport will also get a boost as the new partners work together to establish a new female rugby league academy at the college.

Michael Ainsworth, from the college, said: “It’s going to deliver fantastic opportunities for both parties and it feels good that the college is enabling them to return home for their training base.

“Both parties feel it will help strengthen the club’s Super League application.”

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