Printer Friendly

How I ended up qualifying for the Zambian rugby team, I'll never understand...

Byline: By Adam Jupp

He went as a student and came back an inter-national rugby star.

Tim Miller was part of a six-strong team from Newcastle's Northumbria University who jetted out to Zambia to help raise Aids awareness through sports coaching.

But after being spotted by talent scouts, he found himself pulling on the jersey of their national team in a clash with Zimbabwe.

Tim, 21, of West Jesmond, Newcastle, said: "I played in a warm-up game against the Zambian national team because they needed the practice. There were some scouts at the game and they just said to me could I come along.

"I had a four-day trial, which was pretty intense.

"Then I ended up playing for them. Though how I qualify for Zambia I will never know.

"I don't know whether that means I can't play for England now, but I don't think that's going to be a problem anyway."

Tim played one game for Lusaka in a practice game against Zambia, then bagged a place at outside centre for Zambia, who drew their game with Zimbabwe three-three. Six students from Northumbria, along with others from six other universities, including Loughborough and Durham, went on the trip to Zambia for a month.

Tim, a final year politics and sociology student, said: "We were coaching a variety of sports and I was teaching mainly football and rugby to kids in the community and raising Aids awareness as well.

"I saw a hell of a lot of poverty, which we expected, but we weren't too sure what it was going to be like when we got out there.

"In terms of the climate, it was pretty warm and it was very tiring coaching for three hours in the morning and three hours in the afternoon.

"It was an awesome experience and was one of the best things I've ever done."

And Tim gave his verdict on the quality of rugby he experienced.

He said: "I played rugby at school but didn't take it up at university, so I just wanted to get back into it.

"So for me to go from not playing it to playing international rugby meant I found the standard quite high.

"Obviously in terms of international rugby, it wasn't a great standard, when you compare to sides like England and Australia, but I now play club rugby and it was better than that."

The students were sent to Lusaka, the capital of Zambia, where they worked on projects led by Sport in Action.

A total of 36 people from six universities took part and travelled out to Africa between June and September.
COPYRIGHT 2006 MGN Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

 
Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Nov 17, 2006
Words:437
Previous Article:Fury at homes deal.
Next Article:Goalie in car smash.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2018 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters