The Glasgow squad have been out in force across the region for the first Warriors Wednesday of the season, visiting 11 local clubs and schools to assist with youth section training and get to know the next generation of potential Warriors talent.
Players were out and about at venues ranging from Ayr to Hillfoots as Glasgow continue their drive to strengthen ties in the region they represent on two of the biggest stages in world club rugby, the RaboDirect PRO12 and Heineken Cup.
Ruaridh Jackson, Tim Swinson, Finlay Gillies and Callum Templeton helped out at one of the best attended sessions, hosted at the impressive CALA Park home of Falkirk RFC.
The players were aligned to age-grade groups where they could bring to bear their specialist knowledge, before heading to the clubhouse to lead a question and answer session on life as a professional, sign autographs and pose for photos.
Jackson told www.glasgowwarriors.org : “Warriors Wednesday is a great way of interacting with a large number of clubs and schools across our region.
“It was fantastic to see literally hundreds of kids at Falkirk, and it’s obvious that the club is really thriving. There was a lot of great talent in show, and hopefully some of the tips we were able to give will help the guys develop their game even further.
“We’re experiencing a period of real growth on and off the pitch at the Warriors, and getting into the community is key to sustaining that. A lot of the kids last night were talking about coming to watch us at Scotstoun, and hopefully we were able to convey what an exciting thing professional rugby is to be involved with.”
Most of the clubs and schools who were part of Warriors Wednesday will indeed be involved with a Warriors Scotstoun match-day between now and the Heineken Cup game against Northampton Saints in January.
They’ll take to the IRB-approved 3G surface adjacent to the main pitch to play curtain raiser matches ahead of that night's Warriors fixture, while their minis will be on the main pitch at half-time to be roared on by the Scotstoun crowd.
The next two teams taking the stage at the Warriors’ new home are Lenzie and Cartha Queens Park, before and during the RaboDirect PRO12 game against Dragons on Friday 2 November (kick-off 7.30pm).
Community activation is a key part of the match-day offering at Scotstoun, with under-18s also able to enjoy the Kids Zone at the west end of the stadium. Here they’ll find inflatable rugby challenges and will also have the chance to meet Warriors players for autographs and photos.
A separate autograph/photo session takes place at the end of every game, when Warriors stars who have just been in action come back out to meet the young and young at heart among the ever growing Glasgow support.
The full list of clubs and schools who hosted players on Warriors Wednesday was: Lenzie, Cartha Queens Park, GHA, West of Scotland, Hamilton, Hillfoots, Wellington School, Marr, Falkirk, Ayr and Stirling County.
For more information on how to get involved with the Warriors community programme, including match-day games on the 3G pitch and future Warriors Wednesdays, please contact Glasgow Warriors rugby development manager Kenny Brown: firstname.lastname@example.org