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Program History

The Phoenix were founded in 2004 by Dave Winter, Jay Alexander, Ed Winter and Ryan Baker, after re-establishing youth football in the area, as the Tamworth Trojans, a year earlier. In their first season 2008, the Phoenix came 2nd in the BAFL2 Central conference behind champions the Nottingham Caesars. However, they avenged this by defeating them in the playoffs on route to a BritBowl 2 final defeat to the London Cobras, also a first year club.

Despite defeat in the BritBowl 2 final, Tamworth Phoenix were promoted to BAFL1 division and placed in the South-West Conference. The Phoenix completed the regular season with a record of 9-1, winning the South-West Conference, and moved into the playoffs as the #2 seed. After a victory over the Kent Exiles in the first round of the playoffs, their run was halted at the semi final stage by the East Kilbride Pirates.

In the 2010 season, Tamworth completed a perfect 10-0 season, and a perfect post-season, winning the BritBowl against the East Kilbride Pirates, and moving to the BAFACL Premiership. It was a memorable season for the Phoenix as earlier in the year they had the chance to compete against the Australian Gridiron team as part their tri-nations warm up, and matched-up well, only losing 27-22 to the tourists.

Graham Kelly took over from Jay Alexander as Head Coach, and began life in the Premier League with a win against the East Kilbride Pirates at Lichfield Rugby Club. They built on this success with a 5-5 regular season record with victories over some of the established premiership teams. They were defeated by the London Warriors in the semi-finals of the Play-offs.

The 2014 season was the most successful Premiership campaign for the Phoenix. Having secured the second seed in the Northern Conference, the team beat the Bristol Aztecs in the National Playoffs before succumbing to the London Warriors in the Semi Final.

2015 saw the appointment of James Hossack as Team President, and Martin Hilton to the position of Head Coach (the fourth in the team’s short history) and a fledgling partnership with the Atherstone Sports Hub, where the Phoenix will play their home games.

The next three seasons saw a serious up-tick in performances on the field. In 2015 the Phoenix finally defeated old-rivals East Kilbride in a regular season fixture, before a shock defeat at home to Sheffield saw them relinquish pole position in the conference, but a strong performance away at the defending champion London Warriors in the semi gave hope for things to come.

2016 saw a series of firsts for the club; namely the first undefeated regular season in the Premier League, and the team’s first Conference crown, which paved the way for the Phoenix’s first home playoff tie. Unfortunately they couldn’t hold the momentum, as they lost to the London Blitz.


The Phoenix continued their successes in the regular season by once again running the table against BAFA Premier North opposition, scoring nearly 500 points in the process. The highlight of the season was a 62-3 win against the Merseyside Nighthawks in the last week of the season, going into the play-offs.

Despite being considerable underdogs, the Tamworth Phoenix took a 28-7 lead against the London Warriors in the Semi Final, before the reigning National Champions fought back to take the lead in the fourth quarter. A Will Hussey touchdown, Alex Lenkowski Field Goal, and two huge defensive stands saw the Phoenix outlast the Warriors, and earn a shot at the national title.

In the National Final on 26th August, at Sixfields Stadium Worcester, Tamworth faced the London Blitz for Britbowl XXXI. Pat Daley opened the scoring, before the Blitz answered back. Daley Scored another, before Lenkowski added a field goal to give the Phoenix a 17-7 lead just before the half.

A resurgent Blitz added a scores either side of the interval to give them the lead, before Daley threw an interception which lead to another London score. As the Phoenix trailed 28-17, Tamworth fought back. First through a Daley to Hussey touchdown pass, before Lenkowski reduced the deficit to 28-27. With 8 minutes left in the game, Ben Davies stepped in front of a Joe Thompson pass, to score an interception return and secure the 34-28 win.

Pat Daley was named Britbowl MVP, as the Boston Trophy headed up the M42 to Atherstone.

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