While the past season has largely been characterised by disappointment, with bright spots and highlights few and frankly far between, the coming months promise to be exciting times for Bath Rugby, with the media reporting that the club is seeking to significantly strengthen and rebuild its squad in preparation for the 2017-18 season.
Six or seven new players
Bath’s director of rugby, Todd Blackadder, is quoted in the press as saying that last season’s performance underscored the pressing need for stability, with injuries disrupting the continuity he was striving to deliver. He will also place emphasis on recruiting new personnel in the form of talented players who can give the squad real strength in depth to face the rigours of what will be a long and challenging campaign for the ambitious club.
Accordingly, he has identified six or seven core positions – including tighthead prop and a ‘big’ midfielder – for which he will be seeking reinforcements. Quick to act, earlier this year he signed Welsh fly-half Josh Lewis in what was something of a coup for the club. Supporters and the current squad will be watching the developments at the club with interest and hoping for more transfers of this calibre.
Blackadder, a former All Black, was recruited by Bath Rugby in recognition of his experience at all levels of the game and his comparative success elsewhere. He is also renowned throughout the game for his analytical, strategic approach to the sport and his methodical approach to training and fitness.
Fail to prepare, prepare to fail
Like most professionals charged with building successful rugby teams, Blackadder believes that preparation is key to winning matches, leagues and cup competitions. This philosophy, of course, can usefully be applied to all levels of rugby. Coaches of players of all age groups and capabilities can profit from making extensive use of a rugby drill video from a resource such as https://www.sportplan.net/drills/Rugby/ when preparing for games.
New fixture list
With the publication of next season’s fixture lists a matter of weeks away, there is a sense of eager anticipation amongst fans of most rugby teams. There is a sharper edge to the excitement for Bath Rugby supporters, however, who have a much-enhanced squad to look forward to and the intriguing possibilities of a brand-new campaign.