WALLABIES and Waratah’s duo Kurtley Beale and Paddy Ryan dropped in to Armidale yesterday for the final day of the National Rugby Union camp in Armidale.
Ryan is a local product and has come to the camp four times, as well as attending himself while at school.
The big prop’s message to the kids was simple.
“Rugby is all about having fun with mates and making new friends, at every level,” Ryan said.
It was Beale’s first visit to the camp and the dynamic Wallaby back was only too pleased to travel to Armidale to “give back to the game.”
“It is very important to give back to the kids and be a role model,” Beale said.
“We can give advice about the game as well as life skills off the field.”
Newly signed Waratah’s assistant coach and former Wallaby Nathan Grey also attended the camp and was special guest at the sponsor’s dinner on Tuesday night.
The players visit capped off a record year for the camp which is becoming nationally renowned.
Central North Development Officer Gary Walsh said there were kids from all over Australia attending.
“Numbers are up 15 percent this year and it just gets better every time.”
“There is some real talent.”
The camp was split into two age divisions.
The 11-16 year olds had their final presentation with Beale and Ryan yesterday, before the 8-10 year olds were put through their final training with the pair giving hands on advice.
The two Tahs took time out of their own training to attend the camp.
“We have two trials coming up in a fortnight in Albury and Newcastle,” Ryan said.
“I hope that a lot of Central North players can get to Newcastle for the game.”
Beale is recovering from a shoulder injury that saw him miss the Wallabies spring tour, and will pull on the sky blue for the first time in three years.
The 25 year old will return to the club he debuted for in 2007 after two years at the Melbourne Rebels.