Team LSBU selected to visit Zhuhai for UK-China University Sports WeekLondon South Bank University’s men’s rugby team will travel to China to assist in raising the profile of the sport for UK-China University Sports Week
London South Bank University's (LSBU) men's rugby team has been selected as one of only two universities to represent the UK in the third ever UK-China Sport week.
The exchange is an initiative of the Federation of University Sport of China and the British Council and will consist of a series of friendly games with Chinese university rugby teams and a number of student networking events aiming to deepen the collaboration between British and Chinese universities through sport.
Phil Newman, Head of Sport and Recreation at LSBU’s Academy of Sport, said LSBU was chosen to participate after demonstrating quick growth and development in its programme.
“Only a few years ago, our rugby programme was almost non-existent and in a short period of time we have reached a competitive standard nationally, and now have the opportunity to share our knowledge in building up the sport in China,” Mr Newman said.
“The team have worked incredibly hard over the past few years and shown great dedication, so this opportunity is a great reward for their effort.”
Student and club president Rhys Amos said the team had shown significant commitment this season, competing at BUCS for the first time and representing English Universities in Rugby Sevens.
“The team is thrilled to be able to have this opportunity to visit China and the exchange will be a great way to end our 2017 season, which has been our best yet,” he said.
“We are looking forward to not only playing against the Chinese teams, but creating friendships, learning from each other and getting a unique travelling experience.”
Rugby is a relatively new sport in China, and has been increasingly popular among young people.
The UK-China University Sports Week will attract attention from the government, industry players, media and the general public in China.
Chinese universities taking part in the exchange include China Agricultural University and Beijing University.
Swansea University will take their women’s rugby team to participate in the week of events.
LSBU’s team of 20 players and support staff will leave on 19 July.