Local duo and two new faces boost JRFC ranks22/06/2012
Jersey RFC are pleased to announce that two young players have earned full-time contracts with the club.
James Voss, 17, and Charlie Clyde-Smith, 22, have become full-time members of the 1st XV squad, which has also been bolstered by two new signings - forwards Fred Silcock and Rob Anderson.
James, who has lived in Jersey and played rugby for the JRFC Academy since the age of 8, made four appearances for the 1st XV in 2011/12, playing in the second row. He has recently left school and said he was delighted at the opportunity he's been given.
"I'll be able to focus full-time on rugby, learning from the experienced members of the squad," he said. "It'll be a development year for me, and I also want to work on strength and conditioning - I'm aiming to become a bit of a monster!"
Charlie, a native Jerseyman, was awarded the Most Improved Player trophy at the end of last season. He made his debut for Jersey in 2008 playing wing or centre, but has since converted to the forwards, playing both hooker and flanker last season, when he made 28 appearances. He has played around 70 1st XV games for Jersey and admits to a real buzz from turning out in front of his home crowd.
"The home support is fantastic and means a lot to me - hopefully we'll have even more people watching our games next season, and it's great to be going full-time, which is what I've been aiming to achieve," he said.
"There's competition in every position now and that will really raise our standards - you know someone will be after your spot if you have a bad day."
Player-coach Ben Evans, who is almost 20 years older than James, said the youngster had great potential.
"James isn't yet the finished article but his strength, size and attitude have made him stand out, and he showed last season what he was capable of."
The former Welsh international also praised Charlie's hard work, saying he had really proved himself last season and earning the full-time chance.
Two new players have also been confirmed as the latest signings by Director of Rugby Ben Harvey:
* Fred Silcock, 22, the former Loughborough number 8. As well as
making 22 appearances for the Students last season, Silcock played
in A League reserve team games for both Leicester and
* Rob Anderson, 25, a second row forward from Rosslyn Park. He played 26 times for the London club in 2011/12 and has Championship experience dating from a two-year spell with Esher.
Jersey's 1st XV squad has completed three weeks of conditioning work in preparation for the new season. After a week off they will commence the next phase of pre-season training at the start of July.
The club's first Championship fixture is against Cornish Pirates on September 1st, with two pre-season friendly matches scheduled as part of the build-up: Leicester Tigers on August 11th, and Loughborough Students on August 25th.