Sale Sharks Development Programmes

The Sale Sharks Regional Development Players Programme (DPP) has the aims of:

  • Provide a holistic and player centred experience for all players in the programme.
  • Assist to retain more players within the game at 16+.
  • Increase the number of players with enhanced skills moving upwards in the talent pathway.
  • Provide a positive view of the sport by players, parents and other stakeholders.
  • Develop coaches both within the talent pathway and community game with enhanced skills and knowledge to meet the needs of players at this stage in their development.
  • Strengthen clubs and schools by improving the standard of the players within them.


The Sharks Player Development Group (SDG) is for identified young players aged 15yrs - 16yrs. All our players undergo a holistic programme of development competitions by organising fixtures, and bespoke RFU competitions at both age groups.

Junior Academy (U17-U18)

This group is a graduation from our SDG. The U16/17s undergo a transition programme before joining their colleagues already in our playing squad. The focus for this group is on continuing development with the opportunity to play against their peers in the other regional academies.

At the conclusion of this programme, all of our young players are assisted in the continuing of their rugby at appropriate levels and advised (if needed) on educational establishments that can facilitate the game.

Senior Academy (19yrs-23yrs)

The Senior Academy (U19-U24) is representative of the Sharks young professional players. These players train with and follow the first team training roster at the Sharks and receive additional individual coaching and development in addition to regular feedback and analysis from the coaching team.

Most of the Senior Academy will play in our A League Team with a view to challenging for first team selection. Away from the club, players may also be dual contracted to continue their development at an appropriate level with clubs in National Leagues.


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