We talked with Greg Wood at the start of this season.
About your early days Greg. What got you involved in rugby at Sandal?
I actually came down to do pre season purely for fitness whilst I was a professional cricketer. Jim Kilfoyle was head coach at the time and Jim being Jim within three weeks he'd convinced me the best thing I could do would be to play a couple of friendlies. My second game was on the bench for the first team away at old Crocs and after that I never looked back.
I understand you were a good cricket player. Tell me about that
I was a professional cricketer straight from school having captained Yorkshire and England all through age groups, winning multiple county championships and playing in two world cups. After going full time from school and having played so much so young I fell out of love with the game a bit and decided to seek new avenues.
You played rugby at QEGS I believe. What was that like?
I captained the school side through to sixth form when I had to have a break due to cricket commitments and not being able to risk injuries. I loved school rugby, its where I found my love for the game and had so many great experiences from QEGS.
Moving into your senior rugby career. Who have you played for?
My entire senior carer has been at Sandal RUFC. Other than that I represented Yorkshire in the county championship whilst playing for Sandal.
Tell me about your career highs
Career highs were captaining us through promotions and in National 2. Representing Yorkshire for the club was also a great achievement. The overall high though is being part of such an unbelievable family club where I've had my greatest memories and made friends for life
And your career lows?
Career low was rupturing the ACL, PCL and tearing two cartilage in my left knee and missing a full season then rupturing the ACL in my right knee in the fourth game of the following season and missing the full year.
In your playing days at sandal. What would game day look like through your lense?
I'd always be up early, usually watching NRL or super rugby. Then we used to have a team captains run on Saturday mornings for the majority of my career followed by team breakfast. We'd then have an hour or so down time before match prep would start at 13:30. I'd be changed, strapped and out no later than 2pm to stretch then 20mins kicking before heading back inside for the ref. Team warm up 14:30 and kick off 3pm. Post match was always a fairly fruity affair normally going in to the early hours. Be it a bus trip with Barge and Barrell stop offs for away games or clubhouse lock ins...
The social side of rugby. I heard that there was a court/ fine system...(it’s a family read mind!)
There was always a court session at Christmas which was usually hosted by myself with a few "helpers/enforcers". Always fancy dress themed with numerous fines for players with both drinking and physical forfeits. Unfortunately the finer details will have to remain confidential in this family publication...
So what is your involvement in rugby now?
I've recently got back involved with the squad having retired 2 years ago. I'm looking to help from a coaching perspective and generally support the team and club any way I can.
I'm also the CEO of Midlands Hurricanes rugby league team currently playing in League 1 of the RFL structure
Last question - what does the rugby club do well and where could you see it improve
The rugby club has an incredible junior section and a fantastic senior section. We need to get the two to support each other more and care about each other as much as they do themselves. Seniors should be coaching and supporting juniors and juniors (including parents) should be watching and supporting seniors. I'd argue we are two separate clubs and this needs to change.
Thank you for giving us all such an interesting insight Greg and best of luck for the rest of the season