Sportsbeat’s season long coverage of rugby union equals more words than Tolstoy’s War and Peace

No-one gives rugby quite the coverage we do, says editor-in-chief

After 21,600 minutes of rugby, 270 ‘on the whistle’ live match reports, 500 plus quotes reactions and previews and scores of features, Sportsbeat’s coverage of the domestic rugby season ended with victories for Saracens and Connacht at Twickenham and Murrayfield.

Throw in the Rugby World Cup and the RBS Six Nations and the 2015/2016 season saw us produce over 800,000 words of rugby coverage – more words than there are in Tolstoy’s War and Peace (587,287).

Among the highlights of the season were Sportsbeat continuing to provide all news content for the official websites of the Aviva Premiership and Guinness PRO12, in addition to signing a contract to act as the digital news provider for the British and Irish Lions, ahead of next summer’s tour to New Zealand.

We also produced extensive coverage of the Greene King IPA Championship, English rugby’s second tier, including scripting, editing and presenting a weekly broadcast highlights package.

In addition we again designed and wrote the official Aviva Premiership magazine and worked with England legend Jonny Wilkinson to produce his authorised guide to last year’s Rugby World Cup, from which our content was also published across the UK regional press, in association with RFU community partner SSE.

We also acted as the news syndication service for the HSBC Rosslyn Park Sevens, the world’s largest schools rugby tournament, and the Land Rover Premiership Cup, a nationwide tournament for under 11 and under 12 teams.

We produced a range of coverage to highlight England Rugby’s CBRE All Schools initiative and are a proud partner of the National Rugby Awards, which honour the achievements of all the hundreds of rugby clubs and their volunteers across the country.

“This has been a massive 12 months for rugby and our reporters and editors have really embraced the challenge,” said Sportsbeat’s editor-in-chief David Parsons.

“We like to think that no-one gives rugby quite the coverage we do, from the international and top-flight club game, all the way down the leagues to grassroots and schools level.

“There have been many highlights, from our involvement with the first National Rugby Awards, to a home Rugby World Cup and an England Grand Slam victory, to covering the best of our club game week in, week out, culminating with two great finals at Twickenham and Murrayfield.

“There isn’t much time for rest. This summer, will see our reporters in Rio cover rugby’s exciting return to the Olympic Games and the build-up will start in earnest for next year’s British and Irish Lions tour in New Zealand.”