From education to employment

Coventry College student takes first step towards rugby stardom

One of Coventry College’s most promising rugby talents has taken another step towards stardom after making his first senior appearance for one of the UK’s best-known rugby clubs.

Former Coventry College student and rugby captain Harry Barnes has made his first appearance for Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club, coming on as a substitute in their recent NCA National League 1 clash against Old Elthamians RFC.

The 6-foot 5-inch second row joined the rugby union club in the summer after impressing Birmingham Moseley’s first team head coach Pete Glackin, who also heads up Coventry College’s Rugby Education Programme.

Harry joined the Birmingham Moseley Rugby Senior Academy following three years as a member of the Coventry College Rugby Education Programme, which is run from their RFU-accredited Henley Campus with Wasps Academy as an official college partner.

Speaking about his Birmingham Moseley debut, Harry said: “It was amazing to be on the pitch with players of such a high quality. It was a really intense experience and great to get some decent playing time.

“I can’t thank Coventry College enough for the support they provided during my three years there. They helped me progress all aspects of my game the whole way through my time there and I wouldn’t be where I am now without my experience there.

“They encouraged me to grab hold of every opportunity that comes my way and I think that’s a really important message to all young players looking to make the step up and get to the highest possible level.

“I left Coventry College with a unique playing experience which included playing at Rosslyn Park 7s, Portugal Youth Festival each year and a fully professional training and playing environment.

“My qualifications included the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Sports Science, and additional coaching qualifications which will be a massive help in building a career in the sports industry in the future.”

The 20-year old from Tamworth made his league debut for Birmingham & Solihull Rugby Club, aged 18, in the club’s Midlands Premier winning campaign in 2017-18, and picked up representative honours with the Midlands Under-20s squad and Warwickshire Under-20s before making the switch to Birmingham Moseley in National League 1.

Coventry College’s Head of Rugby, Pete Glackin, said: “We have been well aware of Harry’s talent for the past three years and have watched him grow into a commanding leader and fearsome competitor on the pitch. He has a great future in the game, and we’re delighted to see him taking that next step.

“Our programme gives aspirational young rugby players aged between 16 and 18 the chance to maximise their professional sporting potential through high-level training and personalised development, while completing their academic qualifications under close supervision from our tutors.

“Harry is a fine example of how hard work, commitment and determination, combined with the right training and player pathway can help young players make the next step in their careers.”

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