Scrum-halves and kickers of the Varsity Matches have been used to trial a new Rhino elite-level match ball set to launch worldwide in 2022
Cambridge University scrum-half James Elms was one of the players selected to join British & Irish Lions and Team GB sevens’ players to trial the prototype of the new Rhino Vortex Pro, a match ball that will eventually be rolled out across Europe, Asia and America.
Rhino’s existing top-level ball, the Rhino Vortex Elite, currently used by 78 national sides, and the official ball of Major League Rugby in America, has been at the heart of the Varsity Matches for four seasons, helping to deliver some record-breaking kicking performances.
The new Vortex Pro has been developed to deliver even greater accuracy, flight, grip, and energy transfer, but to ensure it meets the exacting standards of rugby at all levels, a team of experts have been brought in at the testing phase, including Elms, who’s trialled it in the build-up to the Welford Road clash. “All of our number nines and kickers gave it a thorough test,” says Elms. “It had a good consistent flight in passing and the same applies to both goal kicking and kicking out of hand. The Vortex Elite has been an excellent match ball, but the Vortex Pro is definitely the next stage in its evolution.”
Elms and his fellow half-backs, are in good company, as British & Irish Lions Rhys Webb and Richard Hibbard, skills coach Ben John, Team GB star and Wasps and England fly-half Meg Jones, and the coaches from Dave Alred’s School of Kicking, have also been involved in the Rhino trial.
More details of the Vortex Pro are set to be announced later this year, when it joins a stable of world-class training and match balls at Rhino.