Warriors have signed Kyle Hatherell, one of the brightest talents in the Greene King IPA Championship, from Jersey Reds.
Hatherell, 25, can play at number eight or lock and will join on April 1 on a contract that will take him to the end of the 2022/23 season.
“Over the years the Championship has been such a good breeding ground for young talent. Not everyone comes through in the same way. Some are late developers who come through in an unorthodox way,” said Warriors Head Coach Jonathan Thomas.
“Not everyone comes through an academy. The Championship gives those who have missed out for whatever reason the opportunity to show what they can do and fulfil their dreams.
“The Championship is a league we look closely at because there are a lot of good players in the competition.
“Kyle is someone who really jumped out at us. He’s mid-twenties but he’s still pretty young in how many games of senior rugby he has played.
“When we watched him he stood out athletically and physically and he was also someone that we felt could come through and become a Premiership player.
“While we talk about the recruitment of players with leadership qualities and retaining our homegrown youngsters we are still on the lookout for quality talent and Kyle is someone we see as being one of the brightest prospects in the Championship.
“We are delighted to have secured his services. For Kyle to be coming in next month is great for us and it will be good for him to have some exposure with us over the next few months before going into next season so he can get up to speed with our systems and processes.
“We are very grateful to Jersey for releasing Kyle. Over the years they have developed a number of players who have become Premiership players and it’s a credit to the job that Harvey Biljon and his coaches are doing over there.”
Hatherell, who was born and raised in South Africa but who is England qualified, joined Jersey three years ago having played for Marr in the Scottish Premiership. He previously played for Varsity College and Sharks Under-21s in South Africa.
“After meeting with Alan Solomons and Jonathan Thomas I was very much sold on and excited about their vision for Worcester Warriors over the next five years,” Hatherell said.
“Their ambitions are very much similar to my own and I was excited hearing about the young talent coming through, the alignment amongst all the staff and the top signings that are being made.
“I felt that their knowledge of me as a player and what my good attributes and key work-ons were was very insightful and also how they thought I could improve in the environment.
“For me personally getting stuck in and working hard with the likes of JT, who was a top level seasoned international in my position, and with the other coaches Mark Irish, Mark Jones and Matt Sherratt, who have all either played or coached at the top level or both, is only going to help improve my game.
“I am extremely excited to be joining such a fantastic and ambitious club and showing my team-mates, coaches and the fans how I can contribute to the team moving forward.
“I would like to thank Jersey for all their help over the last few seasons in developing me as a player and also the hard work both Harvey Biljon and Alan Solomons have put in to make this move possible.”
Warriors Director of Rugby Solomons is delighted to have secured the services of Hatherell and predicts a bright future for him in the Gallagher Premiership.
“I am really excited about Kyle coming to Sixways,” Solomons said.
“He is a big, powerful, explosive number eight with tremendous ball-carrying ability.
“I firmly believe that he is going to make a huge impact in the Gallagher Premiership and will be invaluable to the Warriors’ cause.
“He is also a terrific lad, who will fit in well at the club. All of us here at the Warriors look forward to welcoming him when he joins us in April.”