A couple of rugby-loving Wharfedale MPs have been getting tips from two of the sport’s modern legends.
Kris Hopkins (Con, Keighley and Ilkley) and Greg Mulholland (Lib Dem, Leeds North West) met former England and Great Britain captain Jamie Peacock and former Australian captain Darren Lockyer in front of Big Ben.
The meeting was a chance to publicise the Rugby League World Cup 2013, which will be hosted by England and Wales and for the MPs – both members of the Political Animals Rugby League Club – to enjoy a special training session.
Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Rugby League Group Mr Mulholland said: “For those of us who love rugby league and have the privilege of representing clubs in Parliament, having legends Jamie Peacock and Darren Lockyer deliver a session in front of Big Ben was brilliant.
“It is great to have two such ambassadors for the game supporting the next world cup and the opportunity for the Political Animals to train with them, right in the heart of Westminster, was a special opportunity and a great chance to promote the tournament and rugby league.
“I hope we can continue to talk to our colleagues about the tournament and how important it is as the first major sporting event in the UK after the Olympics.”
Mr Hopkins said: “It was a real thrill to meet Jamie and Darren and to hear their thoughts as we build up to next year when the rugby league world cup comes home to England.
“The organisers are determined to use every opportunity to promote the game outside its heartland in the north.
“The sight of MPs running around in shorts outside Westminster raised the awareness of some colleagues and gave a number of tourists a story to tell. Let’s hope we see them all at rugby league grounds when the new season gets under way.”