Ambition matches reality

Interviewed pre-season by a county online newspaper Drybrook captain Ben Large talked about his aspirations for the club this season and beyond. So far, so good…

There will be no gentle introduction to the new season for Drybrook… and skipper Ben Large is delighted.
That’s because they begin the new South West One West campaign at home to fierce rivals Newent on Saturday 2nd September.
The two clubs are separated by just a smidgen over eight miles and while that is close, they are even closer on the pitch.
Last season they both finished on 78 points with Drybrook just having the edge on games won, finishing third to Newent’s fifth.
They won one and lost one against each other in the league before the season culminated in a thrilling Forest of Dean Combination Cup final in May which Newent edged by just one point.
“It’s a great way to start,” said Large. “It gives everyone at the club something to aim for and from my point of the view it couldn’t be better because everybody is up for it.”
Inside centre Large was only 23 in May but he is preparing for his third season as captain of the 1st XV.

He comes from a big rugby-playing family – his sister Ceri is an England World Cup winner – and captaincy is something he is used to.
“I captained a lot of the age group teams and I also captained the County Under-18s team,” he said. “We’re a pretty young side at Drybrook and a lot of the players are a similar to me.”
They may be a young team but Large has big ambitions for the club.
“We’re looking to finish in the top two this year,” he said. “We want to keep progressing each year. We want to take the club as far as we can and that means getting into the
national league.
“The aim is to keep driving forward. We don’t want to stand still because if you do you will soon go backwards.”
The club have certainly been on an upward curve since Large took over as captain.
After finishing in the bottom half in their first season at the higher level they made a significant jump up the table last time out.
“I see my job as to keep the boys chilled, keep them disciplined and to control them around the pitch,” he said. “We’ve got a couple of experienced players in the forwards so we’ve
got a good balance of leaders.”
If things do get difficult for Large – and he’s passed every test so far – he doesn’t have far to go for help.
That’s because apart from Ceri, who coaches the thriving women’s section at the club, there are plenty of other members of the Large family around the club.
Dad Phil, who used to play for Rotherham, is part of the committee and brother Dean is the treasurer.
And that’s not all because mum Karen helps with the post-match food in the clubhouse