The Rugby Paper - - Bill Beau­mont Cup / Fea­ture - WILL OWEN ROTHER­HAM CEN­TRE

How do you look back at the sea­son two weeks on? It wasn’t great and very frus­trat­ing. We started the sea­son quite well win­ning half of our first ten games but only won one of the next 15 or so and we fin­ished bot­tom of the ta­ble. What went wrong? We were quite a young team and lost some close games. We had a lot of in­juries to key play­ers, too. Lit­tle things that added up in the end. Did you lose fo­cus know­ing you wouldn’t be rel­e­gated re­gard­less of where you fin­ished? Per­son­ally, I tried to keep the stan­dards up. We might have ex­per­i­mented with a few things that didn’t pay off but we still tried to fin­ish as high as we could. En­joyed be­ing cap­tain? It was a mixed bag. It was a great hon­our but I hadn’t cap­tained a team since I was 16 so it was a steep learn­ing curve. But I grew into it with the help other se­nior play­ers. I’m glad I did it. Did it make you a bet­ter player? Not in terms of ac­tual skills but my game man­age­ment and lead­er­ship im­proved mas­sively. I seek ad­vice early in the sea­son but the only place to learn is on the pitch. Where do the Ti­tans go from there? It’ll be a chal­leng­ing sea­son but Andy Key is a great ap­point­ment as head coach. I can’t com­ment too much be­cause I won’t be in­volved but se­cur­ing their place in the league would be a good start be­fore push­ing for­ward again. Ex­cited about mov­ing to Don­caster? I’m re­ally look­ing for­ward to it and I’m very op­ti­mistic about it. They’re in a great place, hav­ing qual­i­fied for the play­offs for the past two sea­sons. They’re tick­ing all the right boxes for me. What sort of box were you af­ter? Ev­ery­thing from what they’re do­ing in train­ing to the team phi­los­o­phy. I met with Clive Grif­fiths and he said all the things a player wants to hear. Can you break into their mid­field? I’ll al­ways back my­self to make the team but I know it won’t be easy as they have Lloyd Hayes, Mat Clark and An­drew Bu­lumakau. I’m look­ing for­ward to the chal­lenge. What will you bring to the equa­tion? I’m quite direct in terms of ball car­ry­ing and I like lead­ing the de­fen­sive line. I’m not re­ally fancy but I do the ba­sics well. Maybe I can have a sim­i­lar role to Will Hur­rell when he was there. Still dream­ing of Premier­ship? Very much so or even the Pro12. I’m not go­ing to do that sit­ting on the bench so I can’t wait to get go­ing and work hard to claim a start­ing spot. Is the top level out of reach for Cham­pi­onship play­ers? I don’t think so and you see a lot of play­ers mak­ing the step up ev­ery sea­son. The ma­jor­ity of play­ers in the Cham­pi­onship are try­ing to move up. What’s the added value for a Cham­pi­onship player? It’s a harder route and Premier­ship clubs rightly look to their academy but Cham­pi­onship play­ers are, maybe, bet­ter equipped for men’s pro­fes­sional rugby. They’d know they’ll get a grafter, too, be­cause you don’t play in the Cham­pi­onship for the pay. Ever had an op­por­tu­nity to play in the top tier? I was in the Dragons academy for a year af­ter school but I never played in the Pro12 and I was let go. That’s when I went to Moseley for two sea­sons and then two sea­sons at Rother­ham. I’m still chas­ing the dream! Played for the Cham­pi­onship XV? We beat Canada in 2014 which was prob­a­bly my big­gest achieve­ment. I played along­side my Moseley team­mate Greg King and Kevin Maggs was the backs coach. A great ex­pe­ri­ence. If not rugby, what would you be do­ing? I’d like to open a bar or a cof­fee shop when I re­tire but I’m not sure about right now. Prob­a­bly some­thing to do with sport. Favourite cheat meal? I’m pretty good but I tend to have big fry-up the morn­ing af­ter a game and then a KFC or a Chi­nese in the evening. Three spe­cial din­ner guests? Frank Si­na­tra, Barack Obama and James Cor­den. Best and worst ban­ter at the Ti­tans? Worst to Tom Wil­liams be­cause he doesn’t talk much. Tom Cal­la­dine is pretty funny. Best and worst dressed? Cal­la­dine has good chat but he dresses like an id­iot. I like how Jake Henry or Ge­orge Tresid­der style up.

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