Jersey RFC to undergo ‘major revamp’ after securing Tamba Park sponsorship deal
Jersey RFC is in line for a radical overhaul of its operations after it today secured ‘significant’ new funding from Tamba Park holdings Ltd. A rumoured £180 million, four year sponsorship deal will see a root-and-branch modernisation of the running of the organisation, along with a fast-tracked expansion and development of its stadium and training facilities.
‘The first thing we will be doing is changing our name’ explained Jonathon Ruff, the new brand director of Jersey RFC. ‘‘Jersey Reds’ is stale. We would like, from this moment forth, to be known as the ‘Jersey Raptors’. A velociraptor is a ruthless predator with the guile and speed we will be demanding of the players. We are, as of today, the Raptors. And we are going to turn this place into a fortress. And I really do mean that.’’
And Mr Ruff is not exaggerating. The new park will have a seating capacity of 65,000, and, shamelessly taking inspiration from Hollywood hits King Kong and Jumanji, is currently awaiting planning approval for flaming tar pits, ‘electrified’ perimeter fences, rope bridges, bamboo executive boxes, and a piranha tank. Names being mooted for the new venue are said to include ‘Ruff stadium’, ‘Stade de Ruff’, ‘Jurassic Park’ and ‘The Theatre of Screams’
Also within the new park will be housed scale-model dinosaurs, to include a brontosaurus, a diplodocus and two fully autonomous tyrannosaurus rexes. There is also said to be a provisional agreement in place with the Civil Aviation Authority to permit fly-overs by pterodactyl drones.
As well as the radical redevelopment of the stadium, the new team kit will also be scarcely recognisable from what went before it.
Current head coach Harvey Biljong was behind the changes. ‘There is nothing in the RFU rule book banning tails.’ He explained. ‘There is nothing banning scales. There is nothing banning clawed boots, padded horns or spines. The Jersey Raptors are about crashing through the boundaries. The Raptors are about breaking through all of the glass ceilings and shackles and egg shells and obstacles you put in front of us. The Raptors are here. And they have landed.’ ‘And we’ Mr Biljong added ‘will be approaching our matches one game at time’
Despite optimism around the new outfits, sources inside Jersey RFC are said to be ‘furious’ at the leaking of details of one of the new weapons in their arsenal. The ‘Jersey Hakka’ that the players are said to be honing, is a ceremonial war dance based on a fusion of vraic-forking technique and cow milking, that officials expect to strike fear into the hearts of the opposition as they make their way across the new drawbridge and onto the pitch to face the Raptors.
Mr Ruff has made no secret of his desire to learn from the commercial successes of the American NFL, and to attempt to recreate in Jersey the atmospheres in their stadiums: atmospheres that he describes as ‘exhilarating’. Match-goers here will subsequently be offered - from one of three new merchandise outlets on the new site, giant foam fingers, helium filled inflatable bones and full-size vuvuzelas; as well as branded dinosaur bed linen, kitchenware and mobile phones.
Despite all the excitement, there have been calls for Mr Ruff to show restraint. In a controversial move that has enraged association directors, the Jersey women’s volleyball team have been rumoured to have been offered highly lucrative remuneration packages to act as ‘mascots’ for the Raptors, who would ramp-up the ambiance on match days by hammering bongo drums in grass skirts and cheerleading.
Tamba Park Holdings have declined to comment.