Back-row forward Matt Kvesic has returned to Sixways itching for a return to action.
The England international last played for Warriors seven years ago but has returned to the club where his career began as an Academy player following stints with Gloucester and Exeter Chiefs.
Kvesic along with fellow new recruits Billy Searle, the former Wasps fly-half, and ex-Bristol Bears lock Joe Batley, find themselves in the unusual position of joining Warriors while the squad are preparing for the resumption of the 2019/20 season following the lockdown caused by the Coronavirus.
As Kvesic was under contract with Exeter until June 30, he was unable to start training at Sixways until July 1 but, as he was moving clubs, he was also prevented from training with Exeter when they reported back two weeks ago which meant an additional period in lockdown.
“I have been pulling my hair out literally. Luckily my wife has been great. We have a little son, Albie, who is just nine months old so he has kept us busy,” Kvesic said.
“I enjoyed the first little bit, the break was quite nice actually but as it went on and on and on it got tougher and tougher
“It was a bit painful seeing the boys back in training at Exeter and the boys back in here and in here and I couldn’t go in either because of contracts and what not.
“So while the whole league has been back, the handful of guys who have been moving to different clubs haven’t be able to be in. So I’ve had an extra two and half three weeks off so it’s been boring, which is probably the best way to put, but it’s good to be back in now.”
Although much has changed at Sixways since Kvesic last played for Warriors, there is also a welcome feeling of familiarity for him.
“Lots has changed but it’s still got the feel from when I left, so it’s nice to be back,” he said.
“There are some familiar faces around. Some of the staff are still here and some of the boys as well.
“I left a while ago now but the building is the same, albeit it’s been developed and it’s much nicer inside but it’s still got the same sort of feel.”
Full-back Chris Pennell, fellow back-row forward Matt Cox and loosehead prop are among those who played alongside Kvesic in his first stint with the club but it is the prospect of helping to develop the outstanding crop of young Warriors that persuaded Kvesic to re-join.
“I spoke to Solly and he told me the vision he has for the club, the coaches that were coming in and the way that he wants to bring the young guys through,” Kvesic said.
“I’m older now than I was but I came through the Academy here so it was music to my ears hearing about homegrown talent coming through.
“To be able to come back and make an impact would be great. I can’t wait for the season to start now and get going.
“The back-row is fully loaded so it’s going to be tough. Back row in any club is always one of the most competitive positions and there are some big units here as well.
“It will be good. I just want to take it one step at a time, settle in a bit, get to know some boys – albeit socially distanced – start working hard and crack on.”