Ospreys academy

Academy players attend WRU skills clinic

Around 70 academy players from Cardiff Rugby, Dragons, Ospreys, RGC and Scarlets attended the second of a series of intended Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) skills clinics at the National Centre of Excellence on Monday evening.

The players, nominated for the sessions by their academy coaches, were put through their paces a second week running in a two-hour session looking at core skills and units work including scrum and lineout technique.

Split into positional groups, the players rotated around skills stations covering catching and passing, ball carrying and tackling before coming together as backs and forwards for further technical work.

The concept for the sessions was created by Wales U20 head coach Richard Whiffin and fully supported by all the regions. The sessions saw Whiffin join academy coaching staff including former Wales internationals James Hook, Bradley Davies and Josh Turnbull, head of Wales men’s U18s Richie Pugh and senior men’s head coach Warren Gatland, technical coach Rob Howley and forwards coach Jonathan Humphreys in running the different stations.

Huw Bevan WRU Interim Performance Director said: “Alignment with the senior team is critically important for the success of our pathways programmes. When Richard proposed these sessions, we immediately recognised their potential value and were fully supportive as were the regions.

“These skills clinics are an excellent example of collaboration in Welsh rugby and it’s been great to see the players and coaches all committing to and benefitting from them.

“Looking forward we would like to look at opportunities for further collaboration and integration with the aim of enhancing core skills throughout the player pathway.”