A call to arms for Ospreys fans everywhere...
Dickens’ best-known work, A Tale of Two Cities, with over 200 million copies sold, is regularly considered the best-selling novel of all time. Like all good books this is a story that starts with humble beginnings followed by 45 dramatic chapters of resurrection.
We all start somewhere and it’s amazing the journey we take in life and the surprising places we end up along the way.
For Wales at this year’s World Cup, the tale could well take our boys to a place we have never been to before. If we get there, one thing is for sure, the narrative will climax in no small part to players from the Ospreys and two captains on the greatest Japanese adventure of them all.
It’s easy to forget that when Wales were crafting the words of the 2011 World Cup in New Zealand their captain for tomorrow’s game against Uruguay missed out on a place. In 2011 current Ospreys Captain Justin Tipuric was representing his region back home - inspiring us to six wins out of nine while the narrative of that World Cup story played out in a different hemisphere.
Trebanos boy Tipuric is a product of the Ospreys, a journey from age-grade rugby to captaining his country via Aberavon RFC. A rise to becoming arguably the greatest open side flanker playing in the world today, fully deserving of a 5-star best-seller and a place in a Rugby World Cup Quarter Final.
Alun Wyn Jones, perhaps the greatest of all Welsh captains, wrote his first few chapters at Bonymean as a boy. Epic volumes have followed, taking him on a Tolkien-esque climb to Wales and the British and Irish Lions via 238 appearances for the Ospreys.
This week, Ospreys Head Coach Allen Clarke called on fans directly to come out and support the young players representing their region while the likes of Tipuric and Jones play for their country in Japan.
Even broadcaster, opera-singer and Scarlets fan Wynne Evans sent his vocals to Ospreys fans yesterday to ‘support the Welsh stars of tomorrow’ with a video on social media.
The moral of this story? In four years-time Wales could well enter the fables of a French World Cup as champions and the boys battling at the barricades for Wales at that time are some of the names on today’s team sheet for the Ospreys.
If you want to play your part in getting them there then their journey starts here. Please come along and show them that you’re behind them at tonight’s game against Treviso. The story is just beginning for these boys, let’s make it a chapter to remember.