GLOUCESTER Academy prop Jack Forster has been named in the Junior National Academy squad for the forthcoming season.
Forster, who joined Gloucester's Academy set-up this summer, was one of 18 players named by Brian Ashton, the RFU's National Academy Manager.
The young prop could feature for the West Country club this Friday when a development side entertain Doncaster at Kingsholm on Friday night (Fri 19 Aug, kick off 7.30pm).
The England selection represents the most talented 16-19-year-olds in the country and will be in contention for national under-19 selection this season.
Mark Hewitt, Gloucester's Academy manager, told www.gloucesterrugby.co.uk "It's always good for the club to have a player included in the squad. He is a very big young man and we will work on his conditioning but he is on the selection path of England Under-19s.
"He will look to play international group rugby and then even higher - he has already trained with Gloucester's senior squad."
Ashton and the RFU's coaches John Wells, Jim Mallinder and Tosh Askew have been coaching the players at the University of Bath in recent weeks.
Ashton said: "It was harder to make the final selection this year than any other year because of the really high standard on offer. The work both players and national academy coaches have done in our two JNA camps in Bath has been outstanding.
"Despite significant pressure on all of them, they've developed in all areas of the game. The players have shown a high level of performance, great resiliance and they've managed to keep a sense of humour throughout. I now look forward to seeing these players develop further throughout the season."
JUNIOR NATIONAL ACADEMY 2005-06
Danny Care, scrum half, (Leeds Tykes),
Daniel Cipriani, fly half (London Wasps and Whitgift School),
Calum Clarke, flanker (Leeds Tykes and Barnard Castle School),
Oliver Dodge, wing/centre (Leicester Tigers),
David Doherty, wing/fullback (Leeds Tykes),
Jack Forster, prop, (Gloucester, Hartpury College),
Adam Greendale, fly half (Leeds Tykes and Hymers College),
Tom Mercey, prop (Saracens),
Matt Mullan, front row (Worcester Warriors and Bromsgrove School)
Chevvy Pennycook, back row (Bristol and St Brendan's 6th Form College)
Simon Pitfield, lock (Northampton Saints and Bedford School)
Andrew Saull, flanker (Saracens and Bancroft's School)
Joseph Simpson, scrum half (London Wasps and St Benedict's School)
David Tait, back row (Sale Sharks)
Jordan Turner-Hall, centre (NEC Harlequins and Brighton College)
Dominic Waldouck, centre (London Wasps and Latymer Upper School)
Michael Youngs, scrum half (Newcastle Falcons)
Tom Youngs, centre (Leicester Tigers and Gresham's School)
Willi Heinz scored Gloucester's second try as the Cherry and Whites overturned a disappointing first 40 minutes and 0-6 half time deficit, to earn a 26-18 Aviva Premiership victory over Bristol Rugby on Saturday.
It's the first Gloucester-Bristol derby at Kingsholm in over eight years this Saturday (kick off 4:30pm) and, previewing the game with the local media this week, Defence Coach Jonny Bell stressed that, with both teams in the bottom half of the table, they both need the points.
Speaking to the local media this week, Gloucester front rower John Afoa knows the challenge ahead this week against Bristol, and calls on the Cherry and Whites to make the most of home advantage as a determined squad look to bounce back from a narrow loss to Saracens.
Tom Savage speaks to GRTV and the local media as Gloucester went down by 24-20 at Saracens on Sunday afternoon. The second row was disappointed with the result, despite a strong showing from the hosts.
Speaking immediately after the game, skipper Willi Heinz thought that Gloucester had executed their game plan reasonably well and competed hard against Saracens. However, it wasn't enough but the squad will have plenty to work on this week ahead of the derby match against Bristol.
Gloucester may be coming off their best win of the season, the 38-16 victory over Wasps last weekend, but Director of Rugby David Humphreys admits that Sunday's trip to Saracens is an even tougher test.
Looking to try a new sport? Look no further than Walking Rugby as thanks to Gloucester Rugby you can come along and try out the fast-growing sport at taster sessions across the county, starting this Wednesday.
Gloucester return to European Rugby Challenge Cup action on Thursday evening with the visit of Stade Rochelais to Kingsholm (kick off 7:45pm). Early Bird ticket prices are available until 6:30pm on matchday.
Talk about a game of two halves. Things looked grim on Saturday as Gloucester trailed 0-6 to Bristol at half-time. However, Matt Scott's eighth try of the season got Gloucester off and running, and the visitors fell apart as the Cherry and Whites eased to a 26-18 bonus point Aviva Premiership win.