How often does a grassroots rugby coach or captain find themselves sitting in on a Friday night, calling their club’s junior players, the school janitor and even the local vicar, in a last ditch attempt to assemble a squad for a Saturday fixture. Because, believe it or not, most people involved in our sport, play for fun and there’s no feeling quite like donning their club colours (or another club's if needs must) for a run around on a Saturday afternoon.
Having to cancel a match is the last resort but it’s an unfortunately common occurrence within the grassroots game.
However, how great is it when you make the dreaded call to the opposition to cancel and they respond with the news that some of their players would be willing to swap shirts for a half, meaning the fixture can take place. The true spirit of grassroots rugby exemplified.
We’d like to introduce you to Fill Your Boots.
This is a concept that links the rugby community together and strives to connect clubs who have too few players, with players who don't have a weekend fixture.
Founder Sean, set up FYB after his club, Racal Decca RFC, hosted the Smallest Rugby Club World Cup (SRCWC), a fantastic concept and hugely successful tournament, which we will cover in more detail in a future piece!
During the tournament, Racal Decca had enjoyed a 25-man strong team, which really is unheard of for them! The following week they had a squad of 12 available... this resulted in them having to borrow from friends at Streatham Croydon, just to play their fixture.
Fill Your Boots has blown into an amateur rugby social movement that generates traction for clubs seeking new players; whether it’s a permanent move or simply for the weekend! It’s caused such a stir that FYB has been nominated for England Rugby’s Mitsubishi Volunteer of the Year Awards!
So, if your club is looking to recruit players this summer, or if you’re ever in dire need of a few extra numbers one weekend, get involved with Fill Your Boots and drive the grassroots rugby community forward!