As the excitement builds for the Rugby World Cup 2015 starting in 35 days, we at John Martin Estates eagerly wait to see if any of the players who went through the London Wasps Academy and were helped by the John Martin Estates sponsorship get the call up.

John Martin Estates served as the first official sponsor from season 2004/5 to season 2008/9 of the Academy at London Wasps, the club which John Martin has followed since a teenager, and which allows talented youngsters to receive professional coaching in all areas to enable them to become rugby stars of the future. This has allowed John Martin Estates to witness the development of several international players (as well as of coaching/backroom staff) in the England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland teams.

Number 8 player, Billy Vunnipola, joined the London Wasps Academy whilst still at school and is widely considered a rising star of the game. Having played for England’s Under-18 and Under-20 squads, he transferred to Saracens in 2013. In the same year he made his Senior England debut with a tour of Argentina.

Joe Launchbury is a versatile forward who looks set to stay on the international stage for years to come.  After initially training at Harlequins Academy at age 15, he briefly played for Worthing before joining the London Wasps Academy squad. He was famously called up in 2013 for the British and Irish Lions on their tour to South Africa – a first for a John Martin Estates sponsored academy player. He was also named England’s Player of the Year 2012-13.

Windsor born James Haskell started his career playing for Maidenhead Rugby Club before also joining the London Wasps Academy as a highly rated teenager. At the time, he was the youngest person to represent London Wasps on the professional stage. He was called up for the 2008 Six Nations,  introducing him to the world of international rugby. In 2011, he transferred to the Black Rams in Japan and then to the New Zealand Highlanders but is now back at London Wasps and has been a fixture on the international stage for years in his back row position.

Danny Cipriani is a talented all-round sportsman who played football and cricket at a high county level as a schoolboy, but shone in the field of rugby. Having played for England Under-16 and Under-19, he made his mark at the London Wasps Academy. After a natural break with England, he went on to play for the Melbourne Rebels; however two years later he made an impressive return to England playing for Sale Sharks and is a strong hopeful for the Rugby World Cup 2015.

Rob Webber joined the London Wasps Academy ahead of the 2005-6 season,  having played for Leeds Carengie the previous season. He then was given the opportunity to captain London Wasps in 2009, before making a successful debut with the England Saxons. He is now at his usual position of hooker with Bath.

We wish all players the best of luck for the upcoming World Cup selections, and will keep you posted with information, fixture reminders and watch this space!!


Posted on Aug 14 2015 by LH

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