Im­prov­ing Worces­ter want seat at Europe’s top table

The Rugby Paper - - News -

BRYCE Heem be­lieves Worces­ter’s re­vival­ists can tar­get the Pre­mier­ship top six – de­spite the off-field ‘sham­bles’ sur­round­ing the club.

Stun­ning re­cent vic­to­ries over Northamp­ton and Le­ices­ter have re­newed op­ti­mism at Sixways, with in­flu­en­tial for­mer Chiefs wing Heem and fit-again quar­tet Fran­cois Hougaard, Will Spencer, Ryan Mills and Nick Schon­ert lead­ing the charge.

Heem said: “I guess since I’ve been at Worces­ter things have been a bit of a sham­bles. We had Dean Ryan leave in the mid­dle of pre-sea­son last year and this year has been mixed up, with the club up for sale as well.

“Gary Gold’s leav­ing and Alan Solomons has come in, but through­out it the play­ers have been the glue and we’re a pos­i­tive bunch who keep each other go­ing.

“The fact we stayed pos­i­tive dur­ing a re­ally tough start means we’re start­ing to see the re­wards now. The mid­dle of the table is clut­tered and while we don’t want to get ahead of our­selves, we can def­i­nitely chal­lenge for that top six.”

Twenty-four tries in five matches be­fore Fri­day’s de­feat by Sale pro­vides proof of Worces­ter’s re­cov­ery, with the in­flu­ence of backs coach Sam Vesty shin­ing through.

Heem ex­plained: “Vesty’s a good young coach who wants to play ex­cit­ing, run­ning rugby and with our backs that suits us big time. Early in the sea­son we were just look­ing to kick the ball away but now we bring a real run­ning threat.

“Hav­ing play­ers fit again has cre­ated a more com­pet­i­tive en­vi­ron­ment and in the last few games ev­ery­one’s stepped up a notch. Not many teams go to Le­ices­ter and get a ‘W’ so to score five tries and make Worces­ter his­tory was awe­some.”

Sec­ond row en­forcer Will Spencer was sum­moned to Eng­land train­ing last May.

Heem in­sists he is worth an­other look, adding: “It’s a very com­pet­i­tive spot with Eng­land but Will’s a hugely phys­i­cal pres­ence who’s so pro­fes­sional out­side the train­ing en­vi­ron­ment.

“He’s very driven, does all the ex­tras, en­joys the rough and tum­ble and gets stuck in. We’re a much bet­ter team for hav­ing him.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.