The new season hasn't got started but already Richmond Rugby Club have plenty to celebrate thanks to the Guinness National Rugby Awards.

The hard work and efforts of Laura Kapo have seen her nominated in the Women’s Player of the Year category of this year’s star-studded event, with an awards ceremony set to take place at Twickenham Stadium on Thursday 29 August.

Created to honour the achievements of every rugby club in the country, the Guinness National Rugby Awards recognises all those that contribute to rugby union in England.

Committed coaches, passionate players and all those behind the scenes are set to be recognised at the home of rugby – with few personifying the spirit of the game quite like Kapo.

Diagnosed with a sarcoma in her leg, this year has been more challenging than most on and off the pitch for the Richmond star.

But attacking her diagnosis with the same vigour in which she charges at a defensive line, Kapo hasn’t let her illness put her off training or playing, even while going through chemotherapy and radiotherapy sessions.

Richmond and Twickenham Times:

Kapo played all 18 games of the Tyrrells Premiership 15s last term, making an impact across the front row and holding her own against seasoned internationals.

She also plied her trade in the wrecking ball position of 12, showing herself to be a true versatile, as well as loyal and humble, club player, putting the needs of Richmond ahead of herself.

Her achievements have also caught the eye of rugby’s elite, namely Harlequins back row Chris Robshaw – himself set to be in attendance at Rugby HQ.

The former England World Cup captain is an ambassador for the Guinness National Rugby Awards, impressed by the work that he believes is pivotal to the grassroots of the sport.

“Being a Player of the Year is not just about what they do on the pitch, the role they play off it is hugely important too,” said Robshaw.

“It’s being a good teammate, a good person alongside it, you want someone who is going to help out youngsters, help out their teams to be the best they can be.

“Being a good teammate can make such a difference to the team. A player of the year has to always deliver, you can’t pick and choose your games or training sessions.

“There are players who can be 10/10 one week and then do nothing the next, but the ones who win this awards are consistent every week, home and away, tough games and easy games.

“They’re inspiring to the rest of the team, you know they’re going to go out there and perform well every week.”

The Guinness National Rugby Awards recognises the outstanding work done by coaches, players and supporters across the country. There is no other event which brings together the clubs and players from all the leagues in England, from grassroots to elite.