A Question of Sport rivals delight youngsters with visit to rugby club

TIDY UP: Sports stars Matt Dawson and Phil Tufnell with members of Blandford Rugby Club and players from Blandford Camp

TIDY UP: Sports stars Matt Dawson and Phil Tufnell with members of Blandford Rugby Club and players from Blandford Camp

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ENGLAND sporting heroes Matt Dawson and Phil Tufnell have given a boost to a rugby club in Blandford.

The duo, who have become something of a comedy double-act with their wise-cracking rivalry on A Question of Sport, visited Larksmead recreation ground on Tuesday, after Blandford Rugby Club won a Facebook competition run by cleaning company Kärcher.

As part of the prize a team of cleaners using industrial equipment were sent to the ground to help – and received a little extra help from the famous pair.

Speaking to the Daily Echo, Matt, who was part of England’s triumphant 2003 Rugby World Cup side, spoke about the importance of clubs such as Blandford.

“The energy and enthusiasm around the local community here is absolutely top draw,” he said.

“I started rugby at grassroots when I was five or six years old. It was a place where lots of kids got together, lots of parents came together and were helping with coaching and the cooking and all the rest of it.”

Unafraid to get his hands dirty and cleaning using water jets, Matt goofed around with Phil and posed for pictures with fans and signed autographs, as well as playing a little rugby with some of the lucky youngsters.

He said he still enjoys the former international cricketers company and hopes their visit will be a boost for the town.

He added: “Often you get asked to do these types of things. Some are more close to home than others and certainly this initiative Kärcher has put together is very close to home.”

Club chairman Justin Frampton said it was fantastic for the town and community that the stars visited the club to offer their support.

“It is brilliant for the kids,” he added. “They will remember this in the winter on those dark nights when the weather is horrible.”

Town clerk Linda Scott-Giles, who entered the club into the competition, said: “It’s great for them. How many children can say they’ve had a chance to catch a ball kicked by Matt Dawson?”

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