04 Apr 2023 |
Posted by Jonathan Radnedge | 0 Comment.
** After a gap of many years since the last rugby exchange between Hannover and Bristol, finally SV Odin made it – and how: with 75 players and partners, including 28 aged between 15 and 16 plus a few players from other clubs.
The original exchange, 30 years ago, was organised between Horst Josch of Odin, present on this tour, and his old friend David Perkins of QEH, who sadly died in September 2022 and so did not see the resumption of the exchange which was so dear to him.
The SV Odin tour bus
Arriving overnight in a double-decker bus on Saturday, March 25 and led by Director of Rugby Julian de Riva, the day was then spent playing sundry matches, all of which the Hannoverians won. On Sunday they watched Bath Rugby beat Exeter Chiefs at the Rec, a match with great atmosphere.
Tourism time for the Odin group
On a very sunny Monday the adults were addressed by the Lord Mayor at City Hall, while the teenagers enjoyed a walk around Harbourside, and in the afternoon all undertook a bus tour to Clifton and the Suspension Bridge, guided by Liz Gamlin, blue badge guide and Chair of the Bristol-Oporto Association.
Picking up tips at Bristol Bears’ high performance centre
Tuesday was very special, though the weather was inclement: we were treated to a visit to the Bristol Bears’ new High Performance Centre in Abbots Leigh, which is world-class and state of the art.
Star quality . . . Julian de Riva, Horst Josch and England’s Ellis Genge
Andrew Bell, Professional Development Manager, gave us a thoroughgoing introduction to the way the Bears use the centre, interacted with the young people who were also thrilled to be able to meet Ellis Genge, Vice-Captain of the England rugby team.
All in all, a great visit and hopefully the exchange will now forge ahead again in the future.