This week we catch up with front row, Stephen Armstrong
NAME: Stephen Armstrong
P&S PLAYER SINCE: 2018
SPONSOR: Northumbrian Woodland Burials at Felton, Northumberland
WHAT IS THE BEST THING ABOUT PLAYING AT P&S: There are no drama queens or prima donnas, just a bunch of mates who enjoy playing rugby together.
WHO IS THE BEST TRAINER AT THE CLUB: We have a lot of skilful, committed lads who turn out week in week out in all weathers. However, I have to pay tribute to the rest of my front row colleagues. Watching them fluidly putting the ball through hands and tip toeing in between cones during handling skills is truly a joy to experience.
MOST MEMORABLE P&S MATCH: My first game for P&S last season in the away win against Wallsend. Turned up expecting a 15 minute cameo but ended up playing 80 at Hooker. Fought back to win the game in a great team performance. Should have bagged myself a debut try though, story of my life!
WHO IS THE MOST SKILFUL IN THE SQUAD: Luke Masters, the physicality from someone who looks like they couldn’t skin a rice pudding is a wonderful sight. Put him in front of a 20 stone beast and he will execute the perfect chop tackle before dropping straight back into the line.
WHO IS THE QUICKEST: In a squad full of varying body shapes, Dan Whiley looks the most aerodynamic.
WHO IS THE STRONGEST: New signing, John Robson surely. 6ft and 100kg, say no more!
IF YOU COULD PLAY ANY OTHER POSITION WHAT WOULD IT BE: If I had skill, endurance, stamina, speed and a rugby brain I’d love to play 7 and effortlessly drift between hard work on the ground and linking with the backs. Speak to any Hooker and they will spin you a tale about how they’re basically an extra back row…
WHO IS YOUR FAVOURITE PROFESSIONAL PLAYER, PAST OR PRESENT: Rory Best. 37 years old, still holding his own at International level and in his prime, a quality operator.
FAVOURITE GROUND: I’ve always enjoyed a trip to Murrayfield. Edinburgh is a great city and the cross-border banter is always good fun. In our league I enjoyed playing at Newton Aycliffe, canny pitch.
STRANGEST THING YOU’VE SEEN ON A RUGBY PITCH: Probably a bit harsh to call strange, but hooking alongside 66 year old Prop Tom RIchards back in my Border Park days always raised eyebrows! When queried by players & supporters, he always attributed his solid scrummaging to ‘Rigor Mortis’.