Welcome to the Blues Academy:
Our Mission is to identify, recruit and develop professional players for the Bedford 1st XV of the future.
The Blues Academy focuses on Player Development and uses a competitive fixture list to develop players. The Academy U19s play fixtures against other U19 sides such as Leicester Tigers, Northampton Saints, Saracens, the Welsh Regions (Gwent and North Wales), Moseley, Nottingham and Worcester, and older sides such as Loughborough University Freshers, Oxford and Cambridge University U21 XVs.
The Blues won the National U19 Cup in five of the last six years before withdrawing from the competition after winning the Cup in May 2012.
Each season Academy players train with the Blues 1st XV squad and a number are then invited to attend pre-season summer training with the 1st XV. Those good enough are offered contracts with the Blues and over the last few years, many players have moved through the Academy on to Blues senior contracts. Some of these have gone on to play at Championship and Premiership level elsewhere; (Will Chudley, Newcastle, and now Exeter), Josh Bassett (Wasps), Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors) and Duncan Taylor (Saracens) who also played for Scotland A and toured South Africa with the senior Scottish XV in 2013.
Three years ago Josh Bassett moved from the Academy into the Blues 1st XV, where he became the Championship’s leading try scorer. He played for England U20s in the Six Nations, and the U20 World Cup, and has since moved to Wasps. Ali Price, captain of the Blues Academy in 2011/12, played for the Blues 1st XV and for Scotland U20s, and has now signed for Glasgow Warriors. Aaron Morris and Chris Lord are the latest Academy graduates to sign for the Blues in 2013. Aaron has played for Saracens in the J.P. Morgan 7s, England U20s in the Six Nations and the U20 World Cup in New Zealand in June 2014.