ITV has commissioned Grand Slammers, a series that sees England’s Rugby World Cup winners tackle rugby behind bars.
Martin Johnson, Jonny Wilkinson, Lawrence Dallaglio, Phil Vickery, Jason Robinson, Will Greenwood, Ben Cohen, Mike Tindall and Matt Dawson are featured in the two-parter. The series offers insight into the power of sport to change lives as the players open up to inmates about the effect rugby has had on them.
Grand Slammers explores how channeling inmates’ energy into team sports can have a positive effect on their lives while also lowering their chances of reoffending post-release.
Grand Slammers is supported by HM Prison The Mount’s governor, John Gormley, along with the Ministry of Justice. The series is commissioned for ITV by Kate Teckman, head of development for factual entertainment.
Teckman said: “In this new series we’ll see some of the greatest sporting heroes England has ever produced reunite on the pitch for the first time in 20 years to go into a prison and build a rugby a team with men who live their lives behind bars.
“For some of these England legends, rugby presented a positive pathway and an opportunity to fulfill their potential. So, with reoffending rates from ex-prisoners at an alarming level, these World Cup winners are engaging with young men who’ve made big mistakes to show them how the game they love can offer the possibility of taking positive steps to move forward.
“At a moment when rugby will be in the spotlight during this autumn’s Rugby World Cup, Grand Slammers will provide a revealing insight into both England’s legends and the power of the sport that has defined so much of their lives.”