THE rugby community united in grief after the death of a popular young player from Evesham.

Jack Jeffery died while playing for Evesham against Berkswell and Balsall on February 12.

Since then, figures from around the game and elsewhere have come together to pay their respects.

Wasps pro and former school friend of Mr Jeffery, Elliott Stooke said: "Thoughts are with the family of Jack Jeffery and everyone Evesham RFC this morning.

"An old school colleague and team mate of mine."

Worcester Warriors offered their condolences to the former Prince Henry's High School Student, with a statement saying: "The thoughts of all at Sixways are with the family, friends and team-mates of Evesham RFC player Jack Jeffery who tragically lost his life after yesterday's match at Berkswell and Balsall."

Further tributes came in from Worcestershire County Cricket Club and RFC Worcester, whose chairman Steve Lloyd wrote: "All at WRFC offer thoughts, prayers, love and heartfelt condolences to Jack Jeffery, his family and friends and all at Evesham RFC.

"We stand with you and are here to call on if ever needed."

A spokesman for the Rugby Football Union also showed support, saying: "On behalf of everyone at the RFU, we extend our heartfelt sympathies to the family and friends of Jack Jeffery who tragically died yesterday.

"The thoughts of everyone in the game are with Evesham RFC, their players, members and the wider rugby community."

Leicester Tigers player Freddie Burns said he was saddened by the news, saying: "So sad to hear about the passing of Jack Jeffery.

"A young rugby player who sadly lost his life whilst playing the sport we all love.

"My thoughts are with his family, friends and everyone."

Mr Jeffery died after suffering an injury while scoring a try for his team.

His club paid tribute to a "loyal clubman" with a "phenomenal" try-scoring record.

A club statement said: "As a club, we have been overwhelmed by the messages of support and goodwill from the rugby community.

"Jack was calm, respected and highly thought of.

"Our club and community have lost such a bright light."