Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are pleased to announce that fan favourite Buster Lawrence has been appointed as 1st XV captain for the 2017/18 season.Buster re-joined the Billesley Common side from Championship club Rotherham Titans. This season represents his third with the club having been initially signed as a twenty one year old in 2012 from Ding Crusaders.
Having made 51 appearances for the club Buster was spotted by Premiership outfit Wasps who he joined in 2014, only to return again on loan that season. The 2015/16 season saw Buster again commit to the club directly. Unfortunately relegation at the end of the season saw him forced to look to continue his professional career at Rotherham.
The dedication to the club that has seen him want to again return to play in red and black, combined with his Premiership and Championship experience, makes him an ideal candidate to lead the new look squad forward.
Josh Poole a 6ft 1 in, 15st 6lb, 22 year old dynamic open side flanker joins from Welsh Championship team Cardiff Metropolitan University RFC where he graduated in Business Management. England U16 international Josh played his junior rugby for the Witney club in Oxfordshire. While at Cardiff Met Poole also appeared for their British Universities & Colleges Sport team alongside Birmingham Moseley’s new hooker Ryan Roach.
Simon has also captured one of Hartpury College’s promising prop forwards in loosehead, Joe Wrafter. 21 year old, Redditch born, Joe weighs in at 17st 11lb and 6ft tall. He studied Sports Coaching at Hartpury where he made a number of National One appearances and was ever present in the BUCS Super League last season, including being part of the Championship final winning team which beat Exeter University at Twickenham.
Both players have expressed their excitement with the prospect of learning from Simon Cross and playing alongside the experienced and talented players currently at the club.
Joining Joe in the front row is Josh Greatrix, a hooker from Leeds Beckett University (where he studied a Bachelor of Business & Management). At 6’ 0” and 17st 8lb 24 year old Josh will bring a further physical presence to the front row. In parallels with Wrafter, during his time at Leeds Beckett Greatrix was part of the team which triumphed over Loughborough in the 2015 BUCS final.
All three players bring an exciting blend of youth and mobility to their positions, complementing the skills of some of the clubs more experienced players, as they challenge for starting berths in the team.
Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are delighted to announce that long time servant of the club, Adam Caves has signed a contract to keep him at the club next season.
"I'm very pleased to sign Jay, Ryan and Cavesy, which gives us a good balance and competition in the front row. Cavesy brings a huge amount of experience and quality. Jay and Ryan bring a lot of talent and potential. Jay has been excellent for Chinnor this year, and is mobile for a big lad. Ryan has had a great season captaining Cardiff Met and playing for England Students. Both with the right development will be ones to watch this year."
Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are pleased to announce that a favourite son of Billesley Common, and the owner of one of the most impressive hairstyles in rugby, Buster Lawrence will be back for the 2017/18 season.
His connection with the club continued, returning during the latter half of the season on loan cover for injuries before deciding to make the move permanent again in 2015/16. With the relegation from the Championship at the end of that season Rotherham’s offer of full time rugby proved to be too much of an opportunity and he made 16 appearances for the Yorkshire club last season.
The pull of rugby at Birmingham Moseley has, however, again proved to be too strong and the dynamic back row has decided to make the move from Championship rugby to be a part of the clubs drive towards promotion.
Always a crowd favourite the signing of Buster will be extremely welcome to supporters, while being a strong statement of confidence in the clubs plans for the future.
In a move to strengthen their ranks for 2017/18 Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are pleased to announce that two of this season’s victorious British Army Babcock Trophy team will be joining the club.
Fly Half Lance Corporal James Dixon and Second Row Corporal Lewis Bean will be battling for a place in the starting line-up at Billesley Common as full time members of the squad.
Aberdare born Royal Engineer James has combined his rugby for the Army this season alongside making 16 appearances for Bedwas in the Welsh Premiership. Offering a siege gun boot and the ability to challenge defences James will be a welcome addition to the new look backline.
At 6’ 8” and 20st 2 Rifles Lewis Bean is sure to become one of the big guns of the Birmingham Moseley pack. Alongside operational tours in Helmand Province and Kabul Lewis has progressed through the levels of rugby in the Army from U23 to ‘A’ team onto selection for the Combined Services.
With the support of Captain Andy Sanger MBE, Head Coach of the Army Rugby Union, both players will be available to Birmingham Moseley for the complete season alongside fellow Army colleague Ranger Chris Leathem.
James Dixon said of his signing:
“I am very excited to be joining Birmingham Moseley for the coming season. I'm hoping with the quality of coaching and facilities the club has to offer it will develop me as a player and give me the experience I need. After talking to Richard I know the club has a very bright future and I'm happy I can be part of it.”Lewis Bean said of his signing:
“I am excited on joining Birmingham Moseley, it's a very good club with great opportunities. I am looking forward to the coming season to in order to continue to develop as a player. I know the club has a big history and a very strong future.”Director of Rugby Richard Protherough said:
Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are pleased to announce that Simon Cross will be joining the Coaching team for the 2017/18 season.
Simon will combine the role of Head Coach for Birmingham Moseley with his role as breakdown coach at Worcester Warriors. Simon joined the Warriors in 2013 as Defence Coach following a period as Head Coach of Edinburgh Accies.
During his three seasons at Accies Cross oversaw promotion to the BT Premiership in 2011, guiding them to a fourth place finish in 2013. During his time coaching in Scotland Simon also undertook the role of Defence Coach for Scotland U20s in the World Championships and worked with Gregor Townsend at Glasgow Warriors while Assistant Coach Matt Taylor was involved with the National Team’s Six Nations and Autumn International campaigns.
Prior to transitioning into coaching back row Simon was Captain of Edinburgh Rugby, having moved there from Wasps. He retired from playing, aged, 29 due to injury in 2010. On the representative front he played for Scotland U19, U21, the Scottish National 7s team in four tournaments and was extremely unlucky not to pick up a full cap having made it as far as the bench for their 2004 game against Wales.
Simon Cross said:
Director of Rugby Richard Protherough said:
- Most team points in a league season - 854 (previously 785 in 2005/6)
- Biggest league winning points margin (Home) - 58 point margin 72-14 v Cambridge 8th October 2016
- Most points scored in a league game (Home) - 72 points. Birmingham Moseley 72 Cambridge 12 8th October 2016
- Most team tries in a league season - 114 (Previously 83 in 1999-2000)
- Most individual tries in a league season - 20 Ed Sheldon equalling Nathan Bressington in 2005/6
- Most team tries scored in a league match - 11 - vs. Cambridge 8th October 2016. (previously 9 - vs. Sale (4 April 1992)
- Most league conversions in a season - 70 James Williams (previously 49 - Ollie Thomas 2005/06)
- Most conversions in a league match - 8 James Williams (vs Old Albanian Oct 2016) (Previously 6 - Richard le Bas vs. Rotherham, April 1997)
- Most league & cup appearances - 341 Adam Caves (Previously 286 – Richard Stott)
Congratulations to all the new record holders.
Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are pleased to confirm that Sam Brown becomes the latest player to extend his contract until 2019.
Since joining the club in 2011 from Cinderford Sam has made 126 appearances in red and black, becoming a firm favourite of supporters for his dynamic play and desire to constantly look for attacking opportunities.
Birmingham born Brown will contest the scrum half position next season with new signings Rob Lewis from Ebbw Vale and Sam Pointon from Loughborough giving Birmingham Moseley arguably their strongest depth in the position for many seasons.
Sam Brown said:
Director of Rugby Richard Protherough said:
2nd May 2017
Birmingham Moseley Rugby club are delighted to announce that Tom Fidler has agreed to remain at the club for the next two years after agreeing a contract extension.
The former Plymouth Albion prop signed for Moseley in 2015 and has been a mainstay of the Birmingham Moseley front row over the last two seasons going on to make 55appearances for the club.
The 31 year old, 6ft 3in loose head brings a wealth of experience to the Birmingham Moseley scrum having previously played Championship rugby with former clubs Plymouth Albion and Jersey. Fidler has also been capped by his country at representative level having appeared for England Counties and England Students.
Fidler’s signing will provide a welcome boost to supporters as he joins fellow forwards Chris Brightwell, Jacques Le Roux and Aaron Crofts In extending their stay at Billesley Common.
Joining Tom again in the front row is former Academy player James Burgoyne. The twenty year old in his first season as part of the squad has made 17 appearances, offering an impressive mobility to the role.
Tom Fidler said:
Director of Rugby for the 2017/18 season Richard Protherough said:
18th April 2017
Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are pleased to announce that Sam Pointon from Loughborough Students and Sam Hollingsworth from local club Broadstreet will be joining the club for the 2017/2018 season.
Scrum half Sam Pointon is a currently a Masters student at Loughborough University, following his graduation in 2015 with a degree in Sports Technology. He has played 49 National One games for the Students, scoring 12 tries along the way, and regularly competes in The Elite Sevens circuit. England Students international Pointon also combines his playing career with the role of 1st XV coach at Rugby School, where he is a former pupil.
Showing an impressive turn of pace for a half back Sam’s versatility allows him to cover full back and wing positions. He will also bring vital leadership experience to the squad having Captained Great Britain Student 7’s at the World Championships.
Richard Protherough, Director of Rugby for 2017/2018 said:
Sam Pointon said:
Coventry born Sam Hollingsworth, educated at Worcester Sixth Form College and played in their Achieving Academic and Sporting Excellence Scheme, currently plays fly half for promotion chasing Broadstreet. With one game to play Broadstreet are favourites to gain the automatic promotion place to the National Leagues. An attack minded half back, who can also play at full back and centre, Sam has been an instrumental part in their success.
Still only 19 he can already boast representative honours for his country playing for England Counties Under 18’s.
Rugby has been part of his family through the generations, his father Carl Rogers was a regular fly half and full back for Broadstreet, while his grandfather Steve Wilkes, propped for Coventry and Bath before becoming an Old Coventrians stalwart.
Richard Protherough said:
Sam Hollingsworth said:
Birmingham Moseley announce the signing of utility back Chris Leathem from Cambridge RFC for the 2017/2018 season.
Chris is a 25 year old regular in The British Army where he serves in the Infantry Unit of the Royal Irish Regiment as a rifleman. He can play at wing, full back or centre and has a reputation for being a prolific try scorer.
During his army career he has played in a Varsity Match at Twickenham and has the distinction of holding the record of number of tries scored in a single match for the British Army which currently stands at 8.
Chris has served 4 years in the army joining Cambridge for the 2016/2017 season, scoring 5 tries to date. He continues to play for the British Army playing recently in the famous Mobbs Memorial match against Bedford and scoring 2 tries.
Chris has representative honours for Ulster Under 18, 19 and 20’s as well as The British Army, Combined Services and British Army 7’s.
Director of Rugby for 2017/2018, Richard Protherough said:
Chris Leathem said:
Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are pleased to announce that Callum MacBurnie will be re-joining the club for the 2017/2018 season.
Callum is a product of the Club’s highly regarded Colts set up. He was a member of the successful side who won the North Midlands Cup under his captaincy in 2009, going on to gain further success by captaining the North Midlands Under 20’s side in the same season. This was rewarded by the selectors of the Scotland Under 20’s team drawing him into their Junior World Championship squad.
His talent at the time did not go unnoticed within his own club and Ian Smith, Director of Rugby at the time was quick to bring him in to the first team squad.
He made his breakthrough into the first team at Birmingham Moseley and went on to take the centre berth where he played on 38 occasions. During the 2010 playoff matches MacBurnie achieved the remarkable feat of scoring four tries in one match against Birmingham & Solihull.
A move to Coventry in 2012 has seen him spend six seasons at the Warwickshire club. A regular on the Coventry team sheet, Callum has made 77 appearances for the club, The 27 year old would have added significantly to this figure if it were not for an early season injury restricting his opportunities in the latest campaign.
Birmingham Moseley’s Director of Rugby for 2016/17 Richard Protherough said;
Joining Callum on the journey from the Butts Park is Sam Smith. 24 year old Sam is a big ball carrying centre who can also cover the back three. Derby born Smith came to prominence playing for Burton after a spell at Leicester Lions.
Protherough said of Smith;
Birmingham Moseley Rugby Club are excited to announce that their new Community Rugby Department will be headed up by ex-professional rugby player Steve Johns. Johns has a playing CV that has taken him around the country from Plymouth Albion to more recently local sides Coventry RFC and Birmingham & Solihull RC.
Steve has a wealth of coaching experience as well as being a fully qualified teacher, having gained a PGCE in Secondary Physical Education (with Masters Accreditation). He has recently held the position of head of Boys Physical Education at Tudor Grange Academy, Solihull. The role of Head of Community will mean that he will be using all of these skills and qualifications in facilitating not only quality rugby sessions but also multi sports sessions in schools across Birmingham and Solihull.
Speaking about his appointment, Steve said:
Birmingham Moseley Director of Rugby for the 2017-18 season Richard Protherough added:
Steve Johns Coaching Qualifications: Rugby Union (Level 2), Handball, Trampolining, Table Tennis, Orienteering, Volleyball, Tag Rugby, Hockey, Basketball and Football. He also has a Sports Leaders UK Level 3 Award in Higher Sports Leadership, is a REPS Level 3 Personal Trainer and is a Gifted & Talented in PE Mentor (Junior Athlete Education).
The Birmingham Moseley Community Rugby Department delivers a wide range of sports projects and supply quality sports coaching to schools and organisations in the local area, in conjunction with Sports in Schools Ltd.
Birmingham Moseley announce the signing of Premiership experienced, tighthead prop, James Tideswell from Cinderford RFC.
James has a wealth of experience in professional rugby having played for both London Irish and London Welsh in the Premiership, LV Cup and European Challenge Cup.
He began his rugby at Old Swinford Hospital and studied Sport Science at UWE, Bristol. Following this James spent 5 years with local club Stourbridge where he made 88 appearances between 2003 and 2008.
This was followed by a spell at Plymouth Albion before joining London Irish in 2010. His time there was short making just 10 appearances before being picked up by London Welsh where he made 60 appearances between 2010 and 2014.
Yorkshire Carnegie signed him up in 2014, making 33 appearances for the club before moving to his current club Cinderford at the start of the season.
James has appeared in two Championship play off semi finals, turning out for London Welsh against Yorkshire Carnegie in 2014 and for Yorkshire Carnegie against Doncaster in 2016.
Director of Rugby for 2017/2018, Richard Protherough said:
James Tideswell said:
Birmingham Moseley welcome Number 8, Ciaran Moore and young loosehead prop, Jonah Boyce to Billesley Common on 2 year deals.
Ciaran Moore began his rugby career here at Birmingham Moseley as a colt before starting the first of two spells at Stourbridge. Moore joined Stourbridge in July 2013, breaking his time there to spend the 2015/16 season at Darlington Mowden Park. He left after one season returning to Stourbridge where he is now captain. On his return to Stourbridge the 6ft 3in, 17.6 stone back rower, who can cover second row, picked up the captains’ armband. Ciaran is no stranger to crossing the whitewash having scored 11 tries this season.
Moore’s prowess on the field has also seen him earn representative honours for Somerset Under 20’s, Irish Exiles and Southern Counties.
Having just qualified, Ciaran is looking to combine a career in law with part time professional rugby. He is currently looking for a placement in a law firm.
Director of Rugby for 2017/2018, Richard Protherough said:
Ciaran Moore said:
Jonah Boyce joins the club from Loughborough Students.
Those with an eye on rugby in the local area will have seen his name on the team sheet at Birmingham Solihull where he began his rugby career in 2012 making 43 appearances for the club.
He transferred to Loughborough at the start of the 2014/2015 season.
Jonah is a 6ft 2in, 18 stone athlete who has been sport driven since a young age. He was a member of Birchfield Harriers Athletics Club where he had success at both javelin and discuss events. Boyle went on to play rugby at Birmingham Met University before stepping up to National League rugby with Birmingham Solihull.
Jonah can boast a number of representative honours having played for England Colleges, North Midland Under 20’s and Midland Under 20’s.
Richard Protherough said:
Jonah Boyce said:
22nd March 2017
Birmingham Moseley are pleased to announce that, Laurence Cowen will be joining the club from Hull Ionians for the 2017/2018 season filling the openside flanker birth.
Laurence a 6ft 2in, 16.5 stone, 25 year old comes with the reputation of being a skilful ball carrier and a hard hitting openside. He joined Hull Ionians at the start of the 2014/2015 season and has made 70 appearances to date scoring 13 tries. Last season the dynamic back row was credited with the most turnovers per game for the team as well as the most carries per game.
Laurence brings with him county experience for Yorkshire and has previously played his club rugby at Birkenhead Park and the University of Bath before joining Hull Ionians.
Director of Rugby for 2017/2018, Richard Protherough said:
Laurence Cowen said:
16th March 2017
Birmingham Moseley Rugby are pleased to announce the first new signing for the 2017/18 season as scrum half Rob Lewis joins from Ebbw Vale on a two year contract.
Rob brings with him a wealth of experience at the highest levels of the game having represented Wales at 7s and Under 20s level as well as the Barbarians.
A product of the Newport Gwent Dragons Academy Rob holds the distinction of having played over 180 games for London Welsh, giving him the second highest number of appearances in the professional era.
During his time at London Welsh Rob was twice part of a promotion winning Championship team, also picking up a British & Irish Cup winners medal. Upon the demise of London Welsh’s professional arm earlier this season Lewis moved back to his first club Ebbw Vale in the Principality Premiership.
Birmingham Moseley’s Director of Rugby for the 2017/18 season Richard Protherough said
Rob Lewis commented on his move
8th March 2017
Mark Harrison becomes the latest player to sign a two year deal with the club.
Mark will start his second term at the club having joined from National 1 trailblazers Hartpury College at the start of last season.
Hartpury are renowned for producing fast paced backs and Mark is no exception. He has experience from Gloucester Academy and has turned out in the Aviva Premiership A League.
He was brought to the club on the back of his try scoring record of 7 tries in 14 appearances last season at Hartpury. He has maintained that record with Birmingham Moseley scoring 6 tries so far this season.
Richard Protherough, Director of Rugby from next season said,
In the latest signing for the 2017/18 season centre Tim Molenaar will commence his third season at Birmingham Moseley, combining his playing duties with joining the 1st XV coaching team.
This season Tim has continued to apply his combination of skill and strength to the midfield to become a key threat via his trademark barnstorming runs.
Molenaar will also bring a wealth of experience from playing rugby at the highest levels for the likes of Harlequins and Gloucester to the coaching team.
Richard Protherough said of the move of Tim to his expanded role
Joining Tim in the coaching team for next season is a true son of Billesley Common (and son of Moseley legend Alan) former fly half Ollie Thomas. If there is a kicking record at the club Ollie probably holds it, his 1,931 points in a 1st XV career is unlikely be surpassed.
Ollie will be taking a role as skills and kicking coach. His aforementioned ability with the boot, coupled with a versatility that has seen him at home anywhere in the backline makes him uniquely qualified to understand the challenges of modern back play. Thomas will combine his new responsibilities with the 1st XV alongside his role as player/coach for Moseley Oak, Birmingham Moseley’s sister team in the Midlands One West league.
Commenting on Ollie’s appointment Protherough said
16th February 2017
England Counties have named a squad of 23 players to face Scotland Club XV on Friday, 24 February at Birmingham Moseley RFC.
The match is the first in the England Counties season with the side set to play Ireland Club XV on Friday, 17 March in Cork followed by a three-match tour in June.
The Counties will be looking to avenge last year’s 57-27 defeat to Scotland in Galashiels with nine of the squad returning for this year’s clash. Blaydon and Northumberland's Keith Laughlin will once again captain the team.
‘A big response’
Last season the side went on to beat France Federale as well as complete a clean sweep of wins in Canada and team manager Matt Long said he would be looking to the squad’s senior players to set an example in the build-up to the match. ‘Last year we had a pretty new squad and Scotland played very well but we’re confident in our players and I expect there to be a big response,” said Long. “We have a mix of debutants and experienced players and as a team a lot of responsibility is on those guys who have pulled on the white shirt before to instil the right culture.”
‘Pinnacle of their careers’
England Counties is the flagship team of the community game in England and offers players from National League One and below the opportunity to represent their country. This year’s squad features players from ten different clubs and twelve different counties. “For a lot of players, representing England Counties will be the pinnacle of their career so they always play with a lot of pride and as a management team we try and create the best environment possible for them,” said Long.
England Counties squad
Andrew Brown Coventry/Notts, Lincs & Derby, Trevor Davison Blaydon/Durham, Daniel Pullinger Plymouth/Devon, James Litchfield Coventry/Warwickshire, Matthew Miles Old Albanians/Hertfordshire, Ted Stagg Caldy/Cheshire, Nile Dacres Plymouth/Devon, George Oram Birmingham Moseley/Kent, Keith Laughlin Blaydon/Northumberland, Harry Bate Old Albanians/Hertfordshire, Jack Preece Birmingham Moseley/Gloucestershire, Chris Brightwell Birmingham Moseley/North Midlands, Tom Baldwin Blackheath/Kent, Peter White Coventry/East Midlands, David Brazier Birmingham Moseley/North Midlands, Joe Tarrant Ampthill/Eastern Counties, Kieran Hallett Plymouth/Devon, Steven Leonard Hartpury/Gloucestershire, Markus Burcham Blackheath/Kent, Leo Fielding Blackheath/Gloucestershire, Sam Baker Ampthill/East Midlands, James Stokes Coventry/Eastern Counties, Mike Wilcox Hartpury/Gloucestershire
9th February 2017
Following the announcement earlier this week that Chris Brightwell & Jacques Le Roux had pledged their future to the club Birmingham Moseley are pleased to announce two more of this season’s squad have signed extended contracts.
Second Row Aaron Crofts joined the club at the beginning of the season from Old Coventrians, making the five league step up from Midlands 3 West South look like the most normal of progressions for a rugby player. Having only taken up the game six years ago Crofts has rapidly developed under the guidance of former England lock Louis Deacon to establish himself as the first choice for the number 5 shirt, and the go to man at lineout time.
Despite Aaron’s impressive progress having attracted interest from other clubs Birmingham Moseley are extremely pleased that he has decided to stay at Billesley Common for a further two seasons.
With 70 appearances to date Mike Penn is on course to become one of the exclusive century club in terms of representing the red and black in 100 games, having now signed a contract for his fifth and sixth seasons at Birmingham Moseley.
Following three campaigns disrupted by injury Penn is currently enjoying his best season at the club providing a potent attacking option from the backfield. Known for his pace he has also demonstrated versatility this season in playing full back, wing, fly half and goal kicker with equal adeptness.
The commitment of such a valuable player as Mike is seen by the club as key to developing the core of a Birmingham Moseley squad well placed to continue the challenge of reclaiming a place in the Championship.
6th February 2017
Birmingham Moseley Rugby are pleased to announce that back row forwards Chris Brightwell & Jacques Le Roux are the first of this seasons squad to commit their future to the club.
Both players have signed two year extensions to their existing contracts which will see them play in red and black through to 2019.
Portuguese International Le Roux joined the club at the start of the season from Coventry. Leading the list of appearances, having played in every game for the team this season, Jacques has become a firm supporter’s favourite with his aggressive attacking charges never failing to make ground with ball in hand.
Number 8 Chris Brightwell will now rack up seasons five and six for the club joining the Billesley Common club in 2013 from the England Sevens team. The New Zealander has very much made Birmingham Moseley his adopted home and this season has successfully combined his rugby with his new role as a father. Having played 78 games for the club to date Chris should achieve the increasingly rare milestone of 100 appearances for one club thanks to his latest commitment to the Birmingham Moseley cause.
That two such high profile players have committed their future to the club, so early, is a clear testament to their belief in the future of Birmingham Moseley and a statement of the club’s intent to remain a force in National One rugby, while they continue to push for a return to the Championship. The vast experience of both players at the highest levels of the game will be vital to the club as it moves forward.
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