The SSA season got underway with a highly entertaining evening “In the Lions’ Den” with the four Saracens’ Lions; Mako Vunipola, Matt Stevens, Brad Barritt and Owen Farrell. The boys received a thorough interrogation from our MC, Rupes, on their experiences of the Lions’ Tour, covering the on-field and off-field events. In true rugby tradition, what happens on tour, stays on tour, but there were enough subtle hints, mainly from Matt – the major socialite, that winning the test series, amongst other things, was suitably celebrated. Rupes’ questions covered the selection process for the squad and for the specific tour matches, coping with match days, training sessions, refereeing, coaching, and getting the players perspective on of the more ‘sensational’ issues touted by the media throughout the tour. The audience had its own chance to throw questions to the boys, but only one question went unanswered; ‘How much did you miss Gavin Henson?’.
The Fez Club at Allianz Park was packed for this exclusive ‘members only’ event, and everyone was extremely grateful that the four Lions gave such a good show, only hours after stepping off the flight back from the pre-season tour to South Africa.
Perhaps the most telling question centred around what the guys brought back from the tour, and apart from the sheer pride in pulling on a Lions’ jersey, on which they were all totally agreed, everything else centred around some of the great traditions of rugby, such as the experience of playing alongside, and learning from some of the most outstanding players in Great Britain and Ireland, and for the lifelong friendships that are made.
A big thank you to the four Lions, to Rupes for his outstanding job as Master of Ceremonies, and to all of our members who came along.