army v navy 
Saturday 4th May 2024


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Army Navy Match Youth Festival expanding in 2024

For the first time the Army Navy Match Youth Festival will be including girls teams, who will be playing at the home of England Rugby this Saturday, May 4.

Each year the Army v Navy Youth Festival gives young players the opportunity to experience first-hand what it is like to play at the home of England Rugby. Organised and facilitated by the Royal Navy Rugby Union and Rugby Football Union, the Festival is played as a version of X Rugby 7s, with a number of rule amendments designed to keep the ball in hand and encourage attacking play.

Both competitions will follow the same format, and each team will play each other once prior to today’s Senior Men’s match. The two highest-placed teams will play against each other in the final, which will be played at half-time of the Senior Men’s match.

In a year where the family section has proven more popular than ever before, and Little Troopers - which supports the children of military families across the three Services - as the Charity of the Day, Youth Festival organiser, Paul Todd, says that this initiative helps to connect the biggest day in military sport with community rugby.

“The Youth Festival helps to cement the relationship between community rugby clubs and youth organisations which have a strong affiliation to the military,” he says. “Many of the players will be from Service families or be connected to the military in some way. This Youth Festival will give these children a once in a lifetime opportunity to play at Twickenham in front of thousands of people and will become a cherished memory of their time in youth rugby.

“The trip to Twickenham is a highlight of age grade rugby in Devonport Services and United Services Portsmouth, with teams fundraising and gaining sponsorship for the best part of 12 months to make the trip memorable for the players involved. 

“The level of excitement is tangible in all four teams from both clubs and I am sure that the Army Cadet players are equally excited to have this opportunity. For the majority of players involved, this will be the only time these players get to play at Twickenham.

“This is my first year organising the youth festival, and it has been tremendous to know how excited all of the young players are at the prospect of playing at Twickenham. This is especially the case with the girls' teams, who are being invited for the first time this year."

Tickets remain available for Army v Navy 2024, with prices starting at just £10 for Under-16s and £25 for adults. Book now at www.eticketing.co.uk/rfu 

Pic: Alligin Photography

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