20 July 2022 / Club News

Pre Season Gets Under Way

The climax of Brecon’s Covid hit 2021/22 season surely came as early as April 2nd when the team narrowly lost in the dying minutes of the Plate Semi Final to a powerful Treorchy team. While there were a number of fixtures still to play after that date but with no league promotion or relegation and with Covid taking its toll, only one further match, against Dowlais, was played and the season ended in a disappointing fashion. With such an early termination it is hardly surprising that preparations for the new season, which starts on 3rd September with a home match against Pontypool United, have started early. On Tuesday 5th July more than thirty Brecon players turned out at Parc de Pugh to start regular pre-season training. The pattern for the next two months, apart from Royal Welsh Show week when training is suspended, will be for regular Tuesday and Thursday evening sessions combined with Saturday morning training or afternoon warm up matches in August. To date two games have been arranged against Championship sides, at home to Bedwas and away at Narberth. With one additional game still to be arranged the pre-season programme will be testing to say the least.

To date, however, players have taken up the challenge with enthusiasm. In spite of the hot weather and rock-hard grounds attendances continue to be encouraging. There is definitely a determination to build on recent successes. Coaches Matthew Lewis and Wayne Morris took the team to within minutes of defending their 2019 Plate success at the Principality Stadium. The foundation they laid last season has allowed the new coaching regime to kick on with the ambition of again challenging for both the WRU Bowl and the Division 1 East League title. The task for new Director of Rugby, Dale McIntosh and his coaching team of Gavin Dacey, Owen Shepherd and Darren Harris will not be an easy one. Teams with the pedigree of Penallta, Newbridge and Brynmawr will undoubtedly start the season with similar ambitions and with considerable justification based on their recent successes. In the end, as with all competitive sport, success or failure will rest on fine margins. With this in mind the coaches are determined to leave no stone unturned and are engaged in setting out an exciting, progressive pre-season programme. As a team they have brought their experience of both playing and coaching at a high level to Parc de Pug. Their task now is to provide a core of local players with the opportunity to make the most of their abilities and to take their skill level up a few notches as they prepare for, and ultimately play, attractive, enjoyable and successful rugby.

Certainly, to date training has gone well. Sessions are, at this stage, skills focussed, positive and enjoyable. Individual players are challenged and display clear progression in terms of pace and accuracy as they adapt to the presented skill set. Throughout there is positive direction, and encouragement.

For any supporters wondering what it is all about then I would encourage them to turn up to observe a training session or two at Parc de Pugh. It makes good viewing and provides a good insight into what the players, coaches and club are working towards.

For any players thinking about starting training, I would say don’t delay. Things are moving on rapidly and you need to be part of the progression. A warm welcome, both from players and coaches, is guaranteed for all those who want to improve their rugby skills and fitness and to be part of an ambitious Club which is aiming for success with the 1st XV in Division 1 East, the ATHLETIC Team (formerly 2nd XV) in the WRU Athletic Conference and the Youth XV in the WRU Nation Youth Leagues.

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