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Tom, or TJ as he is now universally known, is another prodigious young talent that has rolled off the club’s junior section conveyor belt in recent seasons. Miniature in stature, Tom certainly makes up for it, with an outstanding array of skills that include a bullet pass, a terrifically cultured right boot as well as one of the most elusive sidesteps you are likely to come up against.
Hard to believe but young TJ made his 1st XV debut three seasons ago now at 18 years of age, back in November 2013, scoring a late drop goal in his first outing to wrap up a home win against Leicester Lions. In what was his first season of senior rugby, TJ earned his call-up off the back of some brilliant displays in the 2nd XV, including a last minute penalty to secure a win away against Stourbridge’s Development side. Since then his opportunities have come and gone like the tides. Arriving on the 1st XV scene at such a young age invariably leads to these in-out spells, as young players look to find the consistency needed to maintain a regular spot. TJ has been no different with this, though when he has peaked his performances have been outstanding. Nobody will forget the huge part his boot played in beating Stourbridge in the 2014/15 season, as well as his controlling routine in the win over Caldy, and for those of us privileged enough to see him on North Midlands duty in the summer of 2015, his performances were outstanding. Having trained very well during the pre-season he is in prime position to make the 10 shirt his own this year, and having just turned 21 we will hopefully see Tom flourish upon the 1st team pitch at Mortimer Park for many years to come.
Off the field, there are not masses of dirt to tell about young TJ. He works as an electrical engineer at Cargill and is usually one of the more reserved when it comes to off-field, in-the-bar antics. A regular designated driver for some of our Hereford based lads, TJ’s inability to bring ladies home is down to him still living with mum and dad and not because he is following in the great Welsh International Gareth Thomas’s footsteps, or so he keeps telling us anyway!