Anthony Watson makes England rugby debut
Anthony Watson, Old Georgian 2012, has gained his first senior rugby international cap for England. Anthony came on against New Zealand on Saturday 8 November in the 62 nd minute at Twickenham.
James Reynolds, Director of Sport at St George's College, said of Anthony’s achievement that:
“This is St George’s first full rugby international, a great achievement. This is a very special moment for both St George’s Junior School and St George’s College, as Anthony attended both schools.”
Anthony started at St George's Junior School, Weybridge, in the Early Years and represented the school at rugby, hockey and cricket through the junior ranks. Anthony then took the step over to St George's College, Weybridge, where yet again he represented the School at every age group, including rugby, hockey and cricket, and played in the Daily Mail Vase Final at Twickenham in 2011 for the 1st XV, where he was captain. Anthony has always remained in contact with the school and often visits helping out in coaching sessions.
Even when selected for England at U16 and U18 level, he continued to consistently represent the School demonstrating his commitment and passion for school sport. His footwork and significant turn of pace, combined with his ferocious tackling made him an exciting spectacle at even a young age, and this was something that London Irish picked up on straight away and offered him a full time professional contract.
Simultaneously, he gained further international representation with the England under 20 squad at the age of only 17, including seven starts on the wing and three at full back. Anthony represented the under 20s in the Six Nations Championship and finished the tournament as the second highest top try scored, behind Marlon Yarde.
Anthony went on to play a significant role at London Irish with his first game against Newcastle Falcons and becoming London Irish’s youngest ever Premiership player gaining 18 appearances and scoring 20 points.
Following this, Anthony has also been involved in the IRB Junior World Cup Championship where England beat Wales 23-15 to lift the Championship Cup in Vannes.
In April 2013 Anthony moved from London Irish to Bath where after several impressive performances, he was called up to the England squad to train with them before their Autumn Internationals in 2013. Anthony was called up to the England 35 man squad in January 2014, and made his first England debut in a non-capped friendly against the Crusaders in their tour to New Zealand.
Anthony was called up to the England squad and was selected on the bench to face New Zealand for this year’s Autumn International. Anthony came off the bench for Semesi Rokodugini and despite their best efforts in appalling conditions lost 21-24.
Mr White, Head of Rugby at the College, said of Anthony’s successes that it is:
“An impressive career from an Old Georgian and it is almost impossible to believe we will not see more of this electrifying talent representing England again.”
Anthony’s elder brother, Marcus Watson, Old Georgian 2009, has played for London Irish and Saracens and for England to under 20 level, and is now a full time Sevens player for the England senior team. Callum Watson, Upper Sixth Form student at the College, debuted for the England under 17 squad in April 2014.