Rugby Union

Forces Stars Pleased To Return To 'Normality' Of Premiership Rugby

We caught up with four military personnel preparing to return to Premiership rugby this weekend.

A number of forces stars will return to Premiership rugby action this weekend.

After a long break due to the coronavirus pandemic, the sport's top division will return with military players included in the action.

Lewis Bean and Sam Matavesi may line up on either side of the Army-Navy divide, but they play on the same team at Northampton Saints.

Bean says it is good to be back at training.

"It’s good to have a bit of normality in your life," he said.

"It’s good to be around the boys, to get a rugby ball in your hands and start playing with each other.

"That was good to have someone to push you."

He also lots of praise for his team-mate.

"Sam [Matavesi] was unbelievably fit.

"We live like three doors down from each other so I go to his everyday. 

"I wind up his kids and play basketball. We spend a lot of time together outside of rugby which has been quite good.

"I knew Sam from the Army-Navy but now, I would say we are pretty close friends now."

The military have a good relationship with professional rugby teams and have trained with them on a number of occassions.

Meanwhile, the RAF's Josh McNally is set to line-up for Bath this weekend and discussed what it has been like to adjust to the new playing conditions.

"We were all given equipment to take home with us and I had a bit of a set-up in the back garden," he said.

"We were running as much as we could and had our own schedules.

"That bit of structure is what kept us all going.

"We all came back in very good physical state. 

"The rugby side of things is completely different but in terms of injury prevention, everyone was in a great position and we could crack straight back into rugby.

"We played an internal game down there to get the feel of what it will be like with no fans.

"Walking out for the first time with no-one there was very eerie.

"As soon as you get playing, that all disappears.

"You’re in your own bubble and you don’t really notice it."