Academy coach and former player now running pizza business come out of retirement to help Warriors fulfil opening cup clash - The Worcester Observer

Academy coach and former player now running pizza business come out of retirement to help Warriors fulfil opening cup clash

Rob George 21st Sep, 2022 Updated: 21st Sep, 2022   0

ACADEMY backs and transition coach Jonny Goodridge and former player Mat Gilbert have come out of retirement to help the club fulfil Wednesday’s opening match in the defence of the Premiership Rugby Cup against Gloucester Rugby at Kingsholm (7.45pm).

Goodridge, 41, had six seasons as a full-back with Gloucester in a career which also included stints with Leeds Carnegie and Bristol before he moved into coaching.

Although it is nine years since Goodridge played competitive rugby he regularly takes part in Warriors’ training sessions and will make his club debut if he comes off the bench at Kingsholm.

Flanker Gilbert, who retired from playing at the end of last season, has also been named as a replacement at Gloucester.

The former England Deaf international last played for Warriors in 2016 after a two season stint at Sixways and he also played for  Llanelli, Mogliano, Bath, Hartpury and Cinderford before he retired in April to run his own pizza business.

Gilbert is one of five guest players in the matchday squad joining lock Ollie Curry, back-row forwards Lewis Barrett and Ethan Parkins and replacement hooker Will Tanner.

England Under-18 international Theo Mayall will make his Warriors debut having joined the Three Pears Warriors Academy this season.

Wing Alex Wills and tighthead prop Will Couch, who are also newcomers to the Senior Academy, are in line for their debuts off the bench.

Lock Graham Kitchener, who came off the bench in the Gallagher Premiership matches against London Irish and Exeter Chiefs, is the only player in tonight’s matchday squad to have played this season.

Warriors | 15 Tobi Wilson, 14 Harri Doel, 13 Oli Morris, 12 Will Butler (C), 11 Tom Howe, 10 Charlie Titcombe, 9 Ollie Wynn, 1 Kai Owen, 2 Finn Theobald-Thomas, 3 Jack Owlett, 4 Ollie Curry, 5 Graham Kitchener, 6 Theo Mayell, 7 Lewis Barrett, 8 Ethan Parkins.

Replacements | 16 Will Tanner, 17 Lewis Holsey, 18 Will Couch, 20 Mat Gilbert, 21 Tom Miles, 22 Alex Wills, 23 Jonny Goodridge.


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