Sunday’s Castleford Tigers End of Season Awards was a night to remember for Fords PDRL captain Nick Kennedy, who picked up the Foundation’s 2021 Community Award!
Nick has played a massive part in what has been successful season for the physical disability team and continues to drive PDRL rugby league forward by raising awareness for the sport he loves.
Watch Nick’s interview after receiving his award by clicking HERE.
After receiving the award, a proud Nick explained that the accolade came as a complete surprise, by saying: “It is amazing because it’s so unexpected!
“I’ve always done what I can to help the team and done my bit with fundraising.
“I wasn’t expecting this at all, I was just excited to be invited down to come to the night to be honest.”
The Tigers’ PDRL team have put in some standout displays this term with them picking up a record number of victories in a year.
When reflecting on the campaign, Nick stated that he is overjoyed by how his fellow players have performed despite the difficulties the Covid pandemic has caused over the past 18 months.
“It has been great but a bit difficult with injuries and Covid all taking its toll. We have won more games this season than we have ever won before.
“We have had new players come in, which is always good, and we have got even more players coming across to us for next season. The team is growing and going from strength to strength.
“It is a real honour to lead the lads out, I am really proud of it.”
Back in July, Nick took up the mammoth challenge of cycling from The Mend-A-Hose Jungle to Wembley Stadium ahead of the 2021 Betfred Challenge Cup Final between Castleford and St. Helens.
The cycle was all in aid to raise money for all of the PDRL teams in the UK and he remarkably completed the 210-mile ride in time for the final, smashing his target by reaching £2,500 worth of donations.
Nick put forward that his aim was to raise money with the goal of helping the club’s foundations through a challenging period which would then allow the sport to grow further.
“I wanted to raise money because all of the foundations have had it tough with Covid. I raised money for all of the PDRL teams because for me it is important that everyone does better because it is no good Castleford having the greatest team that has ever been, if the other teams go under.
“Being able to contribute to all of the teams for whatever they want to use it for helps the whole sport improve because PDRL is such a new sport that I just want to see grow.”
In closing, the PDRL captain laid out just how important being involved in disability rugby league has been in his life, and that he hopes the awareness he has raised will inspire others to take up the game.
“One of the reasons for doing the bike ride was to get a little bit of media attention and I got on a couple of TV things.
“Most players at PDRL level have gone through difficulties with disabilities or medical issues that they have but everyone who has come into it has said that it has really helped them.
“The more people that we can get involved, the better for their own personal wellbeing and enjoyment of a sport because I had never played rugby league before having a go at PDRL, but it has been life changing for me.
“If I can do my small part to try and get other people that opportunity then why wouldn’t I.”