South Cerney soldiers from 29 Regiment Royal Logistic Corp serving in Afghanistan given rugby balls by London Irish
BRAVE soldiers from Gloucestershire currently serving their country in Afghanistan are set to be improving their line out skills thanks to a generous donation from a top-flight rugby union team.
London Irish donated two balls – one signed and one to play with – to the troops of South Cerney’s 29 Regiment Royal Logistic Corp after hearing how much they were missing getting stuck into a scrum.
The team made the generous donation after Zoe Preace, whose fiancée Sam Garwood is currently serving at Camp Bastion with the regiment, put out a plea for a rugby ball on Twitter.
The 26-year-old, along with Lance-Corporals Ben Rayola and ‘Tomo’ Tomlinson – members of the regiment’s rugby team – travelled to London Irish’s Madejski stadium where they were presented with the balls during their winning match against Wasps earlier this month.
Zoe – who was behind the Smile Camp Bastion Twitter campaign aiming to boost morale amongst troops posted abroad over Christmas – described the trip as “amazing”.
“The thought of going out on the pitch was a bit nerve-wracking but there was so much support for our forces it was awesome,” she said.
“We loved meeting player Jack Moate after the match and the lads had a great time telling him about plans to play at Camp Bastion – they’ve got a sand area cleared for when the balls arrive.”
The Smile Camp Bastion won the support of figures including David Cameron, Katherine Jenkins and rugby legend Sir Clive Woodward.
The trip was arranged by Bernadette Hewitt of ABF The Soldier’s Charity Berkshire and stadium sponsor Kiren Sharma of Gravity Personnel.