didi rugby coach Caitlin Clark makes debut for Wasps Women

A lady rugby player called Caitlin Clark smiles while wearing a blue sports top

didi rugby coach Caitlin Clark has made her Premier XVs full debut for Wasps.

It has been a whirlwind few weeks for 20-year-old Caitlin, who developed her love of the game while coaching youngsters at didi rugby Reading classes.

A lady rugby player called Caitlin Clark smiles while wearing a blue sports top
Caitlin Clark

She has also helped out England star and didi franchisee, Alex Matthews at didi rugby Worcester sessions too.

But now, it’s Caitlin’s chance to shine on the big stage as she made her debut against Worcester and looked very much a part of the action.

Centre of Excellence

The game was a thrilling high-scoring affair with visitors Wasps on the wrong end of a 57-28 scoreline.

Caitlin began making moves as a member of England Under-18s while training at the Wasps Centre of Excellence.

She them played for Worcester RFC in Championship 1, while also captaining her Worcester University side, where she is studying Sport Psychology.

didi rugby coach Caitlin Clark with a young boy at a class
didi rugby Reading coach Caitlin Clark a few years ago

Caitlin was called up two weeks ago to train with Wasps senior team and, just two weeks later, signed for them for the rest of the current season.

This means she will combining her studies with travelling back and forth to London.

Franchise holder

It’s something that mum – and didi rugby Reading joint franchise holder – Donna Clark thinks she will take in her stride.

“As parents we are always extremely proud of her tenacity, strength and determination both on and off the pitch,” said Donna.

“Over the last few days, people around her in her life at Worcester have reached out to us to tell us how coachable and dependable she is and how supportive she is of others.

“This only makes us beam with pride and we can’t wait to see what she achieves next!”

Exciting times

It is an exciting time for members of the didi rugby family at the minute.

Along with Caitlin’s news, didi rugby Nottingham coach Charlotte Chaston is making waves within the Loughborough Lightning Centre of Excellence set up.

Meanwhile, didi rugby Leicester franchise owner Jenny Burrows has recently been an assistant referee at an England Under-18 Women’s international.

A girl in a purple rugby top gives both thumbs up to the camera
Charlotte Chaston

didi rugby CEO Vicky Macqueen said: “We are all delighted for Caitlin. She was much loved by the children and parents at didi rugby Reading classes and I am sure her Wasps team mates and coaches feel the same way about her.

“Everyone at didi rugby will be watching her play with interest and can’t wait to see what she can achieve on and off the field.”

READ MORE: didi rugby gets accepted by the British Franchise Association

WATCH… How to become a didi rugby franchise owner like Donna Clark…


didi coach Emily gets national recognition in weightlifting

A woman in a blue leotard lifts a heavy weight above her head

didi rugby Harrogate’s assistant coach, Emily Barber, is familiar with success both on the rugby pitch and weightlifting mat. 

Emily started helping out at didi rugby classes in 2021 to complete her bronze Duke of Edinburgh award and hasn’t looked back since. 

A woman in a blue leotard lifts a heavy weight above her head
Emily competing in a weightlifting competition

She soon became a valuable member of the coaching team, assisting at weekly sessions and displaying a natural ability to engage and encourage the little ones with the activities. 

“I loved helping out and am very grateful for all the experience didi rugby has given me”, Emily says. 

Harrogate Rugby Club


“I really enjoy meeting all the future rugby stars, seeing how they develop every week and building a relationship with them – alongside learning new skills from the coaches.” 

Emily is a keen rugby player herself and has played a huge role in introducing the game to more girls at Harrogate Rugby Club.

“I started playing rugby when I was in Year 7 but there wasn’t much of a set up at my local club,” Emily says. 

A lady in a red top runs alongside a young boy, smiling, holding a rugby ball
Emily (right) has fun coaching

“Over the last three to four years, we worked hard to get more girls involved and now we can field a full team. 

“Harrogate rugby girls training and matches are so much fun and I’ve made so many new friends whilst playing.” 

didi rugby Harrogate franchise owners, Mike and Lucy Barnett, are very proud of Emily’s progression and so pleased that she has worked her way into the Under-16s Yorkshire Development squad. 

Olympic weightlifting


As well as being a star on the field, Emily’s has talents elsewhere too. 

To improve her performance on the pitch, Emily began weight training at Harrogate Rugby Club with her strength and conditioning coach, Podium Performance. Impressed with her dedication, her coach suggested she trialled for Olympic Weightlifting training.

She found a natural talent for lifting and has continued her weightlifting journey with coach Luke Stopford at Yorkshire Strength in Castleford. 

After building on her personal bests, she competed in her first British Weightlifting Tier 3 competition. 

Just 4 weeks after her first competition, Emily competed in the British Age Group Championships, a Tier 1 competition, which is the highest level in Britain for lifters aged under 23. 

National scene


Taking place in Birmingham, Emily burst onto the national scene and took 3rd place on the podium in her age group – a huge achievement. 

She says: “I have a busy year ahead but can’t wait to see where my rugby and Olympic Weight lifting training takes me in 2023.” 

“Emily is a fantastic young role model for all our didi stars!” say Mike and Lucy. 

“We are delighted to have her as part of our didi rugby coaching team.”

READ MORE: Free sessions and children’s book reading for nurseries and pre-schools

READ MORE: Find a didi rugby class near you

WATCH: See Mike Barnett explain why the didi rugby franchise model is so successful…

didi rugby Nottingham Charlotte is flying high

Players from various rugby teams sit together in the stand at Burton Rugby Club.

Young didi rugby Nottingham coach Charlotte Chaston has been putting her rugby skills up against some of the best young players in the country.

Charlotte, daughter of didi rugby Nottingham lead, Marie, played for Loughborough Lightning in the National Centre of Excellence festival at Burton.

Players from all sides at the Burton Centre of Excellence
Players from all sides at the Burton Centre of Excellence

She joined players from Wasps, Saracens, Bristol, Exeter, Worcester, Sale, Yorkshire, Hartpury, Harlequins and Northumberland in a memorable day of rugby which showcased some serious skills.

Climbing the ladder to success

From being a Nottingham Moderns RFC Junior player through to one of the founding players of their girl’s section, the South Notts Sapphires, Charlotte’s love and passion for the sport is continuously taking her further and further.

She has played rugby since the age of eight. She Started with the boys’ team and later helped mum Marie set up the girl’s section at her club, the South Notts Sapphires.

didi rugby Nottingham

“She is now keen to help with coaching some of the younger girls,” Marie said. “She loves working with the young children at didi rugby and it has really helped to grow her confidence.”

Charlotte Chaston
Charlotte Chaston in didi rugby kit

“I am so proud of her. She has worked so hard to get where she is. Maybe one day we will see her pulling on an England shirt instead of a didi rugby one!”

Charlotte has now just turned 16 and is playing for Loughborough Lightning Under-18s Centre of Excellence.

Launching in 2019, didi rugby Nottingham hosts classes for children aged 18 months to 6 years.

Find out more by visiting https://didirugby.com/find-a-class.

READ MORE: https://didirugby.com/didi-rugby-launch-exciting-partnership-leicester-tigers

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