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James tackles Malawi rugby

A Solihull PE teacher is determined to revive the game of rugby in Malawi - despite lacking the most basic equipment.

A Solihull PE teacher is determined to revive the game of rugby in Malawi - despite lacking the most basic equipment.

James Bowater moved to the impoverished African country two years ago as head of PE at St Andrew’s International School in Blantyre - Malawi’s second city.

However the 29-year-old, a former Solihull College sports science student, was frustrated at the lack of fixtures for his rugby side. So he set about finding more.

Mum Lynne, from Earlswood, said: “He arranged a game with some boys from Luchenza, about 80km away who had been taught rugby by an ex pat.

“When they turned up none of them had boots. James later discovered that the side had been picked from five local schools.”

This inspired him to set up a tournament with youngsters from St Andrew’s, Luchenza and his old school, Kamuzu Academy.

Today James, who lives in Malawi with his partner Grace and one-year-old Bella, is involved with Rugby Football Union of Malawi and is keen to see the sport grow.

“Equipment is desperately needed,” added Lynne: “James is mad keen on rugby and is desperate for old kit for the boys.”

If you can donate old or unwanted rugby gear, kit or tackle bags email James at jbowater@saints.mw. A container will be going to Malawi in August.

 

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