It is fantastic to report that over 40 players have been training ahead of our first Men's pre-season game away against Bracknell this Friday 5th August, with a kick off at 7.45pm.
All spectators welcome, and the coach leaves the Barnes RFC clubhouse at 5.45pm on Friday for anyone who would like to jump on and come and watch our first outing as part of our preparations for the season proper, which starts in earnest on 3rd September as the Men's 1st XV take on Worthing at Barn Elms - stick it in your diary now!
This week the focus has turned to our set piece, with seven props training in live scrum sessions. all vying for starting berths. Scrummaging has been a huge focus during the off season, as we look to assemble a more competitive squad, across a number of positions.
At this early stage of a ten month schedule for the senior Men’s squad, we feel that we’ve put ourselves into a good position to improve on our performances last season, which were outstanding at times, but too often inconsistent.
This improvement is being driven by detailed planning, off and on the pitch, including the introduction of an improved strength and conditioning programme, headed up by Alex Lee (who has just been at the Commonwealth Games with the Canada 7’s team). He has been assisted by two current 1st XV players, Josh Davies & Harry Short, and being fitter than ever before is a key objective for us this season.
So what does Bracknell on Friday night have in store? We’re taking 42 players who will play three 30 minutes games against a newly promoted Bracknell XV.
After the game, the coach will be returning to Clapham after the game where the players have arranged a few shandys together.
Friday will give us some real insight into how our attack, defence, scrum and line out all look leading into another training week next week, prior to two days on the Bath University campus where we’ll be spending the time training time together and bonding as a squad, with a quiet night out in Bath no doubt as part of that process.
This is a very important few weeks ahead for our squad, and Jack Heald and his coaching team are really looking forward to seeing how their work so far is paying off.
Onwards and Upwards Barnow!
Michael "Rhino" Whitfield - Chairman Barnes RFC