Rugby match tries fire crews’ fitness

Who are the toughest – firefighters or rugby players? It is an argument that is likely to be settled when the two groups lock horns on the rugby pitch next month.

Members of the Newport Fire Station and Newport Rugby Club have teamed up to hold a charity rugby match. Seen getting ready for the game are Adam Matthews, John Bailey, Ed Sullivan, James Wilcox and Mark Millward.
Members of the Newport Fire Station and Newport Rugby Club have teamed up to hold a charity rugby match. Seen getting ready for the game are Adam Matthews, John Bailey, Ed Sullivan, James Wilcox and Mark Millward.

Pride will be on the line as firefighters from around the county take on Newport Rugby Club’s third team in a match to raise much-needed cash for The Fire Fighters Charity.

The match, which takes place at 2pm on March 16 at the Forton Road ground, has been organised by Mark Millward and Ed Sullivan, who are both firefighters with links to the club.

Mr Millward, a full-time firefighter based in Wellington, has just hung up his boots after a long affiliation with the club.

He said: “We should be pretty fit but I guess we will find out how fit we really are on March 16.It should be a good day. It’s the final game of the Six Nations between England and Wales in the evening so that will be on in the clubhouse.”

Full-time and retained firefighters from Bridgnorth, Clun, Bishop’s Castle, Church Stretton and Much Wenlock are also involved in the game.

Mr Millward said he was hoping more than £500 would be raised for the Fire Fighters Charity, which supports people in the fire service in times of need.

The club will also benefit from a busy day behind the bar.

Organisers are also looking for match sponsors.

James Wilcox, captain of the rugby club’s third team, said he was expecting a tough challenge.

“They should be fit and able but they might not have played rugby in a while,” he said.