CORAL.co.uk, the official betting partner of the Guinness Premiership, have helped raise £2,200 for The Professional Rugby Players' Association (PRA) Benevolent Fund over the course of the 2008/2009 by awarding £100 to the charity whenever a try was scored by a Premiership Club team captain.
"This is CORAL.co.uk's third year as a commercial partner to the Guinness Premiership and we felt this initiative was an apt way of extending our support of rugby to the players. We are delighted that the Club Captains managed to score so many tries and we've been able to contribute to this worthy cause."
As a winger, Northampton's Bruce Reihana would have been a likely candidate to finish top of the pile against his more forward orientated counterparts but with four tries, was pipped to the post by the Sale captain, Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe.
In Sale's final match of the season against Northampton, the unstoppable Number 8 ran home his fifth try of the season and brought the total tally of tries by Club Captains to 22.
Talking about the donation, Reihana said:
"It is fantastic to get additional support from one of our main sponsors, Coral.co.uk, and on behalf of all the captains and players I'd like to thank them for their generosity."
"The PRA Benevolent Fund is instrumental in helping players when they most need it, and I'm very grateful to Coral.co.uk for setting up this initiative and allowing me to directly benefit the charity with my tries - just can't believe I got beaten to top spot by a forward!"
The PRA Benevolent Fund is a major part of the Professional Rugby Association's ongoing support of players in need of help in readjusting to life after their rugby career.
Whilst Rugby Union offers both players and fans with high level entertainment and sporting drama, traumatic injuries are unfortunately part of the game, and cases such as Andy Blyth and more recently Matt Hampson highlight the need for the help that the PRA provides.
Through the Benevolent Fund the PRA is able to assist players in covering their medical costs as well as providing a support network to which the player or family can turn to for help, advice or encouragement.
PRA Chief Executive, Damian Hopley said:
"This is a great contribution to the PRA Benevolent Fund, and I'd like to extend a very big thank you to Coral.co.uk for supporting us."
"The help that we have been able to offer players and their families in difficult times has been a massively rewarding part of the PRA's work, and the Benevolent Fund is a charity very close to the hearts of players across the Guinness Premiership."
Henry Purdy, a first half replacement for Charlie Sharples, was amongst the try scorers in the 64-19 victory over Aviron Bayonnais on Saturday evening and told GRTV that it was a professional performance, one the team are happy with.
Gloucester's win in Treviso last week means that they need a bonus point win against Bayonne on Saturday evening to secure a home quarter-final (kick off 8pm), but Tim Taylor wants the team to focus on the performance first and foremost.
Billy Burns and Man of the Match Richard Hibbard spoke to GRTV after the 41-0 win in Treviso, on a day when preparations weren't ideal. They felt the team's attitude was key and also praised the travelling support.
Following the conclusion of the Stade Francais vs Harlequins game today, round six is complete and the quarter-finalists in the European Rugby Challenge Cup are now known with Gloucester set to welcome the Cardiff Blues to Kingsholm.
Knowing a bonus point win would secure a home quarter-final, Gloucester completed their European mission in some style on Saturday evening, sweeping aside a spirited but outgunned Aviron Bayonnais scoring 10 tries on their way to a 64-19 victory.