Suffolk-based Harlequins fan stars in TV advert

Keith Hotchkiss, front, with Stephen Leeming, left, and Rob Collins

Keith Hotchkiss, front, with Stephen Leeming, left, and Rob Collins - Credit: Phil Mingo/Pinnacle/Aviva

A rugby super fan from Mendlesham and two of his pals have joined their sporting heroes on the small screen after winning the chance to represent their club in a new series of TV adverts.

Keith Hotchkiss blew away producers working for Premiership Rugby sponsors Aviva, along with Stephen Leeming and Rob Collins, after they launched a nationwide search for the country’s most passionate rugby supporters.

The trio shone on camera after they were interviewed at the Stoop at the Harlequins versus Sale Sharks game in November, where their love for the club rung out – although they admit they were stunned to get the call to say they would be making their TV debuts.

“It’s brilliant – if it publicises the club and spreads the word that Harlequins is a great club, with a great family atmosphere, then that’s fantastic,” said St John’s Ambulance regional manager and dad-of-two Keith, 45.

“Being a Harlequins fan for me really matters because on every single occasion you can get behind the team and you know they are going to sweat blood and if they don’t they learn from it and they come back.”

TV cameras joined the trio at the Stoop to capture them on film, with the interview one of 12 set to be featured in every ad break during the ITV Aviva Premiership highlights show. Their highlight of the day was a sneak peek into the Harlequins changing room, with building manager Rob admitting it was a thrill to see the Quins’ inner sanctum.

The group – which also includes partners, children and friends – bring banners to very game and style themselves as ‘The Goatpen’, after singling out back row George Robson as the object of their affection.

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The 28-year-old Harlequins stalwart returned the favour, presenting Keith with a pair of signed boots after the 2012 Aviva Premiership final to thank them for their support.

“What we’re trying to do is really get to the heart of what matters to rugby fans from the 12 Aviva Premiership clubs,” said Louisa Cheetham, Senior Sponsorship Manager at Aviva.

“I think what’s been absolutely fantastic is we’ve seen the passion of all the fans, from an 82-year-old Leicester Tigers supporters to a pair of eight-year-olds who love Exeter Chiefs. And I think it’s absolutely testament to how wonderfully supportive the fans are, they are ultimately at the heart of everything we’re doing with rugby and make it the great game that it is.”

Aviva are proud sponsors of Premiership Rugby. For more information on Aviva’s home insurance deals, go to aviva.co.uk/insurance

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