Who took the honours in Ospreys military

After an arduous 50 hours of life at Lucknow Barracks, home of The Royal Welsh, one team came out top of the pile in the Ospreys military challenge.

The Black team, consisting of Richard Hibbard, Jonny Vaughton, Ian Evans, Lyndon Bateman, Steve Tandy, Jerry Collins, Justin Tipuric and Ashley Beck, were awarded first place after the scores were totted up by Ospreys management after a series of physical challenges throughout the weekend visit, and received their first prize of a meal for the team of eight at Swansea's Morgans Hotel ahead of the first training session of the week on Tuesday.

The squad were put through their paces at the camp by Captain Lee Davies of 2 Royal Welsh, throughout the visit, competing against each other in a wide range of challenges that saw the players racing to put up base tents, guiding each other through 'blind obstacle courses', and taking part in swimming challenges, a 'log run' and an indoor assault course, to name just a few of the challenges, all of which were keenly contested. For the challenges, the players were divided into four teams, Black, Blue, Orange and White.

On top of the competitive elements, which had been designed to challenge leadership skills, provoke the players competitive sides and to think outside of the box, the players also followed their usual training programme, with rugby and conditioning sessions to be slotted in.

Speaking about the weekend trip, Ospreys Head Coach, Sean Holley, said:

"It was a successful trip. We managed to get out of it what we set out to achieve, in that we got some meaningful rugby sessions against good opposition and had a change of environment that took the players out of their comfort zone. It was a good experience for everyone, the players undertook some team building activities that were put on by the Royal Welsh for us, they did some good conditioning work, and staying away for two nights in an army barracks allowed for some team bonding.

"Moving forward, the weekend will have plenty of benefits for us. A lot of the younger players were challenged to step up in a leadership role for the various tasks. Some of them showed that they have real initiative, and that they are able to hold their own among the senior players and put their case forward. The contact rugby sessions against the Army allowed us to do some valuable work on our strategies and team play ahead of the Edinburgh game.

"Going away has helped to lift everyone, it was hard work but good fun. It's given the group a boost, and we're all looking forward now to preparing for Sunday's game against Edinburgh. I think generally, this group of players have bonded very well because of the experience they've had. What really had an effect on all of us was going away and talking to the soldiers who have been to war, about all they've been through. It certainly put life and rugby into a bit of perspective for the players and coaches, and made people realise how lucky they are to be doing what we do for a living. We're extremely grateful to everybody from the Royal Welsh at Lucknow Barracks for the warm welcome we received and, hopefully, we'll get the chance to do this again in the future."

The visit follows on from activities at the Ospreys recent game against Connacht, where soldiers from A Company, Second Battalion, The Royal Welsh, were guests of honour following their return from active duty in Afghanistan and took part in a lap of honour around the Liberty Stadium pitch ahead of the game. Prior to this, Ospreys players had recorded a DVD of messages of support from the players which was sent to Afghanistan while the Battalion was on duty there.

To see pictures from the visit click here.

Watch out for some exclusive video footage from the Ospreys visit to Lucknow Barracks on Ospreys TV SOON!