TWO rugby players with Herefordshire connections have been picked for an England men’s under-18s development camp this weekend.

Theo Mayell and Joe Jenkins, both 17 and students at Haberdashers' Monmouth Schools, have been chosen for the England camp, which takes place at Stafford Rugby Club on Saturday (February 27).

Mayell, a back row, who lives near Ross-on-Wye, is a member of the Worcester Warriors’ Academy.

Meanwhile, Jenkins, a centre, who cut his rugby teeth at Hereford Rugby Club and attended Madley Primary School, is a member of the Bristol Bears Under-18s.

Both Year 12 students are studying A levels in Monmouth Schools Sixth Form and, under normal circumstances, would have played rugby extensively for the school 1st XV during the winter.

“Considering the lack of rugby we’ve been able to play due to the coronavirus pandemic, I was surprised about the invite because there have been no academy league games so it was a bit of a shock,” said Mayell.

“But I am massively looking forward to it. If I feel I’ve put everything into it, I’ll be pleased. Hopefully, I can pick up some extra tips to add to my game as well.”

Jenkins played at Hereford Rugby Club from under-nine to under-16 level and has represented both Newport and Bristol Schools.

“With a strong under-16 season for school and Bristol, and then carrying this through to the under-18s training, I hoped I would be in contention,” said Joe.

“This is a great opportunity to improve and test myself at the next level.

“I’m unsure yet of my future pathway after school but carrying on playing rugby is definitely part of it.”

Both players have been inspired by school coach John Bevan, and Hallam Amos, a former Head Boy.