Warriors rising stars Jonny Arr and Charlie Fellows know all about the passion and excitement of the RGS Worcester & The Alice Ottley School versus Kings Grammar Worcester clash – having both played in three local school derby games each!
Ahead of the Modus Challenge Cup on Wednesday night at Sixways Stadium, www.wrfc.co.uk caught up with Arr (RGSAO) and Fellows (Kings) to get their thoughts on the big clash and rekindle a bit of old rivalry….
Q. What are you memories of playing in these games?
CF: It is a pressure cooker environment for the players, there are so many people watching. Whereas you might normally get 20 people there are suddenly a few thousand. Normally it is a tight game. Everybody is nervous, nobody wants to make a mistake.
JA: It’s all people talk about at school for months. It’s the game you target at the start of the rugby season. There is always a big build up to it and I still remember running out to that noise. I still think that is the biggest crowd I have played in front of.
Q. Charlie you went down in folklore for your long range last minute drop goal that once settled one of these games. What do you remember?
CF: We were a point down on the last play of the game on the 10-metre line. I looked outside me and saw nothing was on so I kicked it. I’d never tried a drop goal and haven’t since. It was the last kick and it sailed over. The next thing you know I was on people’s shoulders.
JA: I still maintain we played seven minutes injury time that day! It was actually in front of the posts and only 20 metres out. And ask anyone who was there, it definitely went wide right. My main memory was when we won a game late on with a Cameron Pimlow try – I remember because it was my pass that put him in!
Q. Will you be here on the big night to cheer on your old school?
JA: Definitely! There is plenty of banter between me and Charlie and I intend to come decked out in school colours. I want a win so I can give him grief the next day… and the next day!
CF: I’ve got friends who have gone to University that are coming back just to see this one. It’s great that it can be played on the stadium pitch and be a real occasion. It is what the game deserves. As for Jonny, I just hope I have the last word.
Q. So finally guys, who do you think will lift the Modus Challenge Cup?
CF: I have actually been back and done some coaching with Kings so I have the inside track. I believe we are the slight favourites – but anything can happen. It’s just great for the players to experience this game on the stadium pitch. It is a night they will never forget.
JA: I’ve been to see RGSAO play a few times and, although it is a new team, it is a local derby and anything can and probably will happen. It’s fantastic that Warriors have put this event on and hopefully it will be the first of many.