Photo Gallery: Falcon Quest – fans of every Prem club turn out for Twickenham Final


The Gallagher Premiership final may be fairly unique in English sport. Not only do the hardcore and softer core fans of the finalists descend on Twickenham, but it is also seen as a festival celebrating club rugby for the entire Rugby Union family.

The Wembley finals for rugby league also have elements of this sentiment, although there is much more of ‘northern day out in London‘ feel to that occasion.

On the walk between Twickenham Station and the stadium, supporters from across England were wearing their own clubs’ colours and mingling happy among the Leicester and Saracens fans.

As some point, I must have twigged and thought:

“Well I’ve seen Wasps, London Irish, Harlequins and the two finalists, what if I could get a few more?”

To be honest, I thought teams from the towns with smaller populations might be harder to find until I came upon some Worcester Warriors fans, and my attitude changed to:

“What if I could find and photo the whole lot; and take a photo of every club in the Premiership?”

So, from just being there to report on the game, I went on a mission  – to find a jersey from every club in the Gallagher Premiership.

As we made our way to the stadium, I was fortunate enough to be walking behind a couple from Gloucester, one of the clubs I had anticipated would prove difficult to find.

I spied a Northampton Saints fan on the other side of a fence and persuaded him through that fence to pose, but as I took my seat in the press gantry, I was still well short. Bath and Exeter Chiefs were very well represented in the crowd but I was still stuck at ten as the game kicked off.

Luckily for me, there was a Sale Sharks fan three rows behind and 30 feet to my right who was more than enthusiastic to move me one nearer.

Eleven’s not bad and I consoled myself that it had been a decent idea. I even put out an APB for anyone in a Newcastle Falcons shirt to send me a photo, which was very helpfully retweeted by Paul Morgan, Head of Communications for the League, but to no avail.

But with the game over, I had given up when I stumbled upon three Bristol Bears fans having a pint in the concourse. They stood tall for the city and I decided not to leave until I had delved into the crowd outside enjoying the DJ for my last piece of the jigsaw;  an elusive Geordie.

One man in an All Blacks top told me he had seen a Falcons jersey some moments ago in the crowd. I couldn’t leave with the kind of lead only Huggy Bear would supply to Starsky & Hutch.

But as I was resigned to admittign defeat, a young man walked passed me on the way to the bar. At first, he was reluctant until I explained to him that he was the final piece in my jigsaw and would complete a project that would illustrate how united the rugby family can be.

With grace, he delayed the return to his beer and posed for me. “Haway the Lads”, I thanked him in his own language as he trotted off to the beer and the DJ.

So a big thank you to the Rugby Union family for agreeing to stop and pose for this gallery.

Shall we do this every year?

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