Ospreys youngsters have been receiving tips from senior players at the region as part of their weekly scrum clinics at Llandarcy Academy of Sport.
A regular feature in their schedule, the age-grade forwards have been participating in the clinics throughout the season so far under the watchful eye of Swansea RFC and Wales front-row legend Garin Jenkins, and Regional Performance Development Manager Andrew Millward, who have focussed on the efforts of the front five in particular.
Now, after the likes of Duncan and Adam Jones participated in special sessions earlier in the season, this week has seen their Ospreys team-mates and current Academy Coaches Steve Tandy and Andy Lloyd join U-18 Coach Ioan Cunningham to take a session for the whole pack, that focused on ensuring the correct body positioning in the scrum, maximising power output at engagement, and an understanding of the scrum mechanics and principles.
Speaking about the sessions, Andrew Millward, Regional Performance Development Manager commented:
“The scrum is one of the key areas of the modern game and it is important that the forwards have a clear understanding of what is required of them to maximise the opportunities presented in this area. Things like body positioning and power output at engagement are closely linked. If you don’t get the first aspect correct, providing stability at the scrum, then you won’t be able to generate the power that’s needed to drive forward at engagement.
“We want the Ospreys to be synonymous with the development of props, as they are the cornerstone of the scrum and play an integral role in the game. The only way to do that is work hard with players from a very young age when they absorb information like a sponge, to ensure they get into good habits, and then it’s just a case of practice, practice, practice. There are no short cuts to becoming a professional rugby player, and that is particularly the case when it comes to props.
“Our young forwards have certainly benefited from the involvement of the likes of Steve, Andy, Adam and Duncan who have also joined us for clinics. They have immense knowledge of the scrum gained from playing at the top level of the professional game, and the players taking part in the sessions really respond positively to them. Their involvement as coaches with the Eyasses this season is helping with their own development for when the time comes for them to call time on their playing career, as well as having a huge influence on the next generation of Ospreys, and is an excellent example of the development from within ethos that we are always looking to promote at the region.”