With what seems like a blink of the eye, the new season has swung round already and Saturday will see the first outing for me to see battle joined for 2011/12.
Training has intensified, but it still feels less like Rocky Balboa and more like too many Rocky Roads in the off season! The key focus for me this season will be to improve my lineout work – which I discovered I clearly have an issue with at the end of the season when we were all asked to submit a review of our seasons assessments. How I had not picked up that lineouts were my Achilles heel is beyond me – but at least I know I can fix it.
My first two fixtures are National League sides – my first are playing a National League touring side from Scotland. Both should prove to be stern tests and provide the right warm up ahead of a hard schedule for the opening two months of the season – which includes five exchanges in the first six weeks!
Its an exciting start to the season too, as shortly after the first whistles are blown the Rugby World Cup will start in earnest in New Zealand. The All Blacks continued to underline their favourite tags with a significant thrashing of the Springboks in a bizarrely half empty stadium in Wellington.
They also unveiled their new look kit – including their new away kit. Which is all white. This after some huffing and puffing from Jonah Lomu about Englands new all black kit! This also followed on from Eddie Jones’ odd outburst about England’s chances at the World Cup (still bitter after 2003 perhaps?!) or perhaps just a lack of recent press/needs a job – this surely means David Campese will be next to come up with some utter bollocks. Given the current up and down form of the Aussies, and the fact we thumped them last time we played them, you think they’d wind their convict necks in!
For now I need to focus on the task in hand and hope I can get through my first match on Saturday.