The Rugby Players’ Association staged the 16th Annual RPA Computacenter Players’ Awards at Battersea Evolution in London last month.
Almost a thousand guests were in attendance at the prestigious event in central London, which not only honoured the outstanding playing achievements of the season, but raised over £160,000 for Restart, the official charity of the Rugby Players’ Association.
The money raised at the annual event is crucial to Restart, the charity established by the RPA in 2001 to support professional players who have suffered serious injury or illness. It provides financial and practical support to players and their families during difficult times, including help with the cost of medical treatment and rehabilitation equipment. Restart also provides emotional support helping players come to terms with having to give up the game they love.
Former England international and Restart trustee, Ben Kay, knows exactly how vital this money will be to those who receive it: “Every professional rugby player knows how lucky they are to have been able to make their favourite past time their career. But the inherent risks associated with a collision sport and commercial pressures associated in professional sport there can be casualties. So as we basked in the glory of one of the best rugby seasons in memory we were delighted by the generosity of support for RESTART the charity that is there to pick up the pieces when things go wrong – be that medically, financially or psychologically – for those that invest so much to make our game great!