Clean sweep was a tribute to Tom

Bridlington's first and third teams stand with the number 12 shirt before a minute's silence at York.
Bridlington's first and third teams stand with the number 12 shirt before a minute's silence at York.

Bridlington’s three rugby teams all picked up wins on an emotional weekend when they remembered a team-mate who lost his battle with cancer.

Tom Keeping died on Friday, and as a mark of respect, nobody wore the number 12 shirt for Bridlington in any of the weekend’s games against York.

Tom Keeping

Tom Keeping

Players also took to the field with ‘RIP TK12’ written on wrist bands and a minute’s silence was held before the matches.

Second team captain Rob Medforth played alongside Tom as a junior and senior player.

He said: “Tom first became a member of Bridlington RUFC as a 13-year-old. He came from a very successful Bridlington Rangers football team and like many others he fancied a new challenge.

“He took little time adapting to his new sport and quickly became a vital member of the squad. Best described as a strong running, hard hitting inside centre, Tom played a massive part in the team.

“At under 17s level, the team enjoyed a league and cup success and Tom was unfortunate not to earn a place in the Yorkshire squad following a trial.

“At senior level, Tom immediately earned himself a second team place. A few stand-out performances later and he had forced his way into the first team. From there he was in and out of both squads but he always played with a smile on his face and his heart on his sleeve.

“Before his illness Tom was an ever present at the club and was a popular member who got involved in everything.

“During his illness he was an inspiration to all. His bravery should be a lesson to everyone.

“He is a member who will be very sadly missed but one who will never be forgotten.

“From all at Bridlington RUFC, rest in peace Tom. Our thought are with you loved ones.”

A funeral service will be held at East Riding Crematorium at Octon tomorrow (Friday) at noon.