The World Rugby U20 Championship trophy tour begun its tour around the north of England last month. Having travelled over 11,000 miles to reach Manchester, leaving the home of title holders New Zealand in December.
The trophy has visited over 70 clubs and schools throughout Greater Manchester before arriving on Albert Square for the tournament media launch event on Saturday 4th June.
The trophy has visited landmarks across Manchester including the National Cycling Centre and the National Basketball Centre, as well as the city’s iconic Piccadilly Station.
It even made a stop off at Airkix Indoor Skydiving where England Rugby mascot Ruckley took to the skies, trophy in hand!
Along with trained skydivers John and Brad, Ruckley glided through the air for his first skydiving experience.
“We were delighted to welcome the Under 20’s Rugby World Cup trophy” said Airkix General Manager John Rogers.
“Keeping careful eye on the trophy was the legendary Ruckley who took to the air and flew like a real Superhero! At Airkix, whether you’re aged 4 or 104, we deliver the dream of flight to everyone,…. including bulldogs!”
The tour kicked-off at Sale RFC who will host England as the official training base to the team throughout the tournament.
Commenting on the arrival of the trophy, Minis and Juniors Chairman James Hourihan said: “We were thrilled to have the World Rugby U20 Championship trophy here at our Minis & Juniors Presentation Day. As the official training base for the England team, we can’t wait for the tournament to kick-off and having the trophy present only enhanced that excitement!”
Myserscough College similarly took advantage of the trophy’s appearance on campus, with rugby mad students posing for pictures in support of the #FutureStarsofRugby, before it made its way to the famous ‘Owd Nells Tavern where, on the hottest day of the year, it basked in glorious Lancashire sunshine.
In between, the trophy also made an appearance at St Edward’s College, Liverpool, where pupils and the school’s rugby players caught a glimpse of the silverware.
The competition – which showcases the best young talent from across the globe – heads to Manchester for three weeks of international rugby at the AJ Bell Stadium and Manchester City’s Academy Stadium.
The championship begins on Tuesday 7th June, check out the match schedule.
It’s £10 for Adults and £5 for juniors for tickets. For more information on how you can buy tickets, please visit www.englandrugby.com/u20championship