RATS TALES FEBRUARY 2022
THE Warringah Rats have received a big boost ahead of the upcoming season by securing the services of a couple of Australia’s smartest young rugby players. Sports scribe Jonathan B Geddes has all the inside info in the February edition of Rats Tales, rugby’s most respected newsletter. But that’s just the start – we also have an update on Warrlngah’s big Sevens tournament being staged in February and reveal a familiar face has returned to Rat Park for 2022.
THE Rats have broken new ground for this season by recruiting their first ever neuroscientist and his international businessman brother.
In a smart double deal, Rats head coach Michael Ruthven has signed up siblings Will and Richard Clift. He was put in contact with the Queensland pair through Rats’ defensive coach Nick Piva-Giblett, who worked with Will when they were together in the Melbourne Rebels system.
The brothers will add real depth to Warringah’s forward strength, with 25-year-old Will playing in the second row and Richard, 23, a backrower, who most recently turned out with the powerful Brisbane club Brothers.
Will arrives at Narrabeen with a weight lifted from his broad shoulders after recently completing his challenging neuroscience degree. Instead of hitting the books, he is now ready to belt some rival forwards.
“I’m super happy to have that done because it was a lot of work and it will be nice to focus on the rugby a bit more this year,” he said. “I want to give the rugby a good crack before I jump down any career. It’s a case of seeing where it all takes me in the next few years.”
The versatile Will is also a talented guitarist and singer/songwriter, who released his debut EP on Spotify last year. We encourage Rats players and fans to have a listen. And he would be keen to perform after a Rats’ game in the forecourt.
Richard is no slouch on the academic front either, completing a degree in international business and commerce.
MEN ON A MISSION
THE brothers travelled down to the northern beaches from Queensland before Christmas, training with the club for a week and getting to know what the Rats and the area are all about.
Will said a huge part of their decision to join Warringah was the welcome they received from coach Ruthven. “Just staying at his place, how hospitable he was and getting to a few of the sessions knowing he had the best intentions for us,” he said.
The brothers have made it clear they are not here for a beach holiday and have ambitions to go as far as they can on the rugby field.
“Obviously Shute Shield being a platform for jumping into professional rugby at a later date is a huge drawcard as well,” Will said.
Ruthven said their arrival was really exciting and the boys will be good additions to the squad. “I watched a bit of Richard playing in Brisbane last year and he is a mobile hardworking backrower and a good lineout operator,” he said.
Will played with Melbourne in the NRC, but with last season disrupted by COVID, he headed back home to Queensland and turned out with the Noosa Dolphins on the Sunshine Coast. “He is big and he is robust,” Ruthven said.
Supporters will have no trouble spotting Will at Rat Park this season – he will be the one wearing the white lab coat.
SIXES AND SEVENS
DON’T forget the Warringah Sevens tournament, which is a great way to kick off the season on February 19 at Rat Park.
It is the innovation of Warrlngah’s proactive general manager Greg Marr, who confirmed that six Shute Shield clubs will compete in the main tournament – Warringah, Manly, Norths, Souths, the revitalised Two Blues and Wests. Those six clubs along with Easts will take part in the Colts division.
It now appears unlikely that a subbies competition will go ahead as the feedback from a lot of those clubs was that it was too early in the year for them.
Marsey is now working on a plan to stage a schoolboy tournament, which would be an exciting addition to the day.
Unfortunately, a big women’s sevens tournament is being held the same weekend on the Central Coast meaning they cannot participate this year.
LOOK WHO’S BACK
THE Prodigal Son has returned to the Rats for 2022.
After a couple of seasons down Pittwater Road
with arch-rivals Manly, the talented utility back Harley Attwater will be pulling on the green and white jumper again this season.
Our spy, disguised as a ripped powerlifter, reports Harley looked a bit sheepish when he walked into the club gym for the first time on his return. But he is such a popular character that he was quickly welcomed back into the fold by the other players. Attwater is a proven matchwinner in the Shute Shield and a very handy pick-up.
BACK ON THE PADDOCK
WHILST many of us are still struggling to rewind our body clocks after Christmas, the Warringah players started sweating it out again last week when pre-season training recommenced.
The rugby content starts to ramp up now and that will also be the basis for a lot the fitness work. There will be a strong focus for the forwards around the scrum and lineout, which are essential components for the success of a rugby team at any level.
“It is important we develop some combination and understanding there with new guys coming in,” coach Ruthven said. “We will continue to work hard around our ‘D’ system and some of the technical components around the tackle contest.”
VALE TERRY MORRISON
THE Warringah rugby community send their thoughts and prayers to the family of former Rats coach Terry Morrison, who passed away from a heart attack while surfing on the Sunshine Coast on Christmas Eve aged 70.
He was assistant to Steve Lidbury in the 1992 season.
Morrison was a super speedy winger who played four matches for the All Blacks in 1973, including their 16-10 loss to England at Eden Park, and was also a New Zealand national sprint champion.
2022 SEASON MEMBERSHIPS
All of the usual benefits apply to each respective membership level. In 2022, in recognition of our member’s support during difficult times, we are going to gift each Platinum & Premiers member with a polo shirt for the season!!
We are also introducing a Country membership for supporters living outside the Sydney metropolitan area, with free entry to 3 home games.
Click on the membership flyer below to purchase.
2022 REGISTRATION FEES
Are you playing for the Rats this year?
Then click on the poster below to register.
New Merchandise available on our website and on the ISC portal.
The ISC portal has items available for pre or6der and is available until 18 February 2022. There are items available up to size 8XL and there is additional merchandise for kids from Size 4 to 16.
Click below to go to our website.
Click below to be directed to ISC for all pre orders.
Rats are looking for accommodation for players. If anyone has a granny flat, spare unit or apartment, or room that they can offer Rats Rates to rent it for the season – please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
“Comedy for a Cause” club fundraiser is on Saturday, 26 March 2021 in the clubhouse at Rat Park.
Please click on the flyer below to book tickets.