With courtesy of @rugbyworcs the WRSC were invited to the media launch of the Gallagher Premiership at Twickenham.
The launch was attended by the 12 Directors of the Gallagher Premiership along with a player from each of the clubs. The initial part of the day involved the Directors and Players having individual photos followed by group photos. The group photos were taken via the players tunnel out in the open and empty Twickenham stadium on a beautiful sunny September day.
Shortly afterwards Craig Doyle, BT Sports Presenter addressed the launch and interviewed the newly appointed Darren Childs, Chief Executive of Premiership Rugby, Mark McCall, Director or Rugby at Saracens and Declan Kidney, Director or Rugby at London Irish. Darren, Mark and Declan gave their opinions on the upcoming world cup along and the start of the Premiership. Darren Childs stated over 12 million people watch Premiership rugby and over 100 million people watch in China alone and the sport was getting some traction in the US. Darren’s ambition was to increase these numbers and put premiership rugby on the world stage. Mark McCall stated how competitive the league now was and questioned what effect the missing players who were attending the world cup would have. Declan Kidney was keen to express how important it was to focus on the here and now and how he wished for his team to start strong. He stated there was a lot of excitement around the club, especially with the completion of their new ground, however they needed to live in the present.
Following the interviews, the press and those attending the event were encouraged to speak to each of the twelve teams. Each club had a table each where the Director of Rugby and the club’s player took questions from the media. When discussing the season ahead with Alan Solomon’s Alan stated preseason was good, they had worked on two four-week blocks which included conditioning games and skills in the first block and the second block concluded the conditioning and focused on rugby finishing with a week’s camp in Spain. Francois Hougaard stated preseason had been really good. He felt it was better on the body having a four-week block followed by a week off as mentally it helped knowing you had a break. He also stated bringing the ball in earlier in preseason had been great. Work had been done on skills as well as physicality. He stated they had been working hard and smarter and was very excited for the games ahead. When questioned about consistency Alan spoke about setting standards high and maintaining these. Alan stated he had had a positive response from the team and those high standards needed to be maintained throughout the season. Alan stated he was positive and realistic about the season ahead.
The launch was a great opportunity to meet with Directors and Players, it was very relaxed, and everyone was very accessible. It was great to have an opportunity to be part of such a prestigious event. Our thanks again to @rugbyworcs for the invitation.
Don’t forget if you would like to be a part of the WRSC committee we are always looking for new committee members.
Article by Kim Lennard
Photos by courtesy of Rebecca Carter