University of Bath student, Austin Emens’, rewarded with a Senior Academy contract from Premiership club Bath Rugby

The speedy back has caught the eye of the Blue, Black and White coaches with his excellent performances for the University men’s 1st XV in the national BUCS Super Rugby league. He has also enjoyed a breakthrough at international level having made his GB Rugby 7s debut in December.

“I’m really happy and proud to sign for Bath Rugby,” said Emens, who is in the third year of a Business degree at the University. “I didn’t really expect this opportunity. I joined the University for the Academic side of things, it was the best course for me, but I obviously also knew that rugby was a big part of life here and I knew the links to Bath Rugby were there too.

“I joined the rugby programme in my first year and have made good progress. Ryan Davis [Rugby Performance Squad Backs Coach] has been really supportive. He encouraged me to believe in myself, helped get me into my preferred position as full-back and things have turned out well.

“The last couple of months have been a bit of a whirlwind – signing for Bath and playing for GB7s has all come at once – but it’s good fun and I’m really glad I have these opportunities. They are what I’ve wanted and worked for.”

Emens, who was playing 3rd XV rugby two years ago, is the second University of Bath student during the BUCS Super Rugby era to earn a contract with Bath Rugby following hooker Tom Doughty.

Aaron James, Head of Rugby at the University of Bath, said: “We are absolutely delighted for Austin, he has worked so hard for this opportunity and it is thoroughly deserved.

“His self-drive, both on and off the pitch, skill development, game understanding and consistent performances through 7s and 15s has earnt Austin his contract and it’s another proud moment to see such a good person get his just reward.

“Austin joins Tom who we have developed through the BUCS Super Rugby programme to progress to professional contracts, and this is testament to the University of Bath and Bath Rugby Academy partnership. One of the goals of the University’s Performance Rugby Programme is to develop players who go onto professional rugby and our partners at Bath Rugby in particular.”

Emens played school rugby to a high level with Brighton College but was not part of a club Academy and joined the University’s rugby programme when he started a Business degree in September 2021.

He enjoyed his first taste of BUCS Super Rugby during the 2021-22 season but it wasn’t until the second half of the 2022-23 campaign that he became a regular, helping the University achieve a top-four finish and reach the cup semi-finals.

Emens is the latest current University of Bath student to have committed themselves to Bath Rugby for the 2024-25 season, joining fellow Business student and England A international Max Ojomoh, recent Wales Six Nations debutant Archie Griffin and England U20 player Sam Harris.

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