26-year-old Sam Myers is a local lad from Grenfell in country New South Wales who’s gone from a childhood soccer fanatic to professional Rugby Union player faster than you can say footy. With the Sevens Rugby in full swing, this guy took a few minutes out of his day to chat with The Tradie about all things football and his trade as an air conditioning electrician.
Name: Sam Myers
Currently living: Sydney
First and foremost, how did you go from Fridgey to professional footy player?
While I was a tradie I played footy locally at the Northern Suburbs of Sydney on weekends. From there got time off work to go away to tournaments. I got picked up for training camps in early 2013 for Australian team and I was pretty lucky for my boss to give me more time off. At the start of 2014 I was in between working in my apprenticeship and going away on footy trips. It was a no-brainer for me to make the decision to play footy full time and my boss was happy and understanding that these doors don’t always open.
Who did you do your apprenticeship with – want to give them a shout-out?
Yeah, shout-out to the team at R&D Technical Services!
Tell me about your journey in footy?
I played soccer until I was 16 and I always had a passion for rugby. I grew up in a place called Grenfell in country New South Wales and it was a huge rugby town – my current coach has even played a few games for Grenfell back in the days! It was big in early 90’s, so there were always home games and they were undefeated so the hype was high. When I was 14 I tried rugby but I wasn’t the best at it so I stayed with soccer. I ended up playing again in the Under 16’s and at 17 was signed off to play in the Open Grade. I played a few games and we won the Premiership in 2010. After that I made my way to Sydney for my apprenticeship, playing footy for the Northern Suburbs and everything roller-coastered at the end of 2012. I also made the Commonwealth Games team in 2014 at Glasgow and we ended up taking home the bronze medal.
What’s it like playing footy on the world-stage?
It’s unbelievable. I’ve got to pinch myself every now and then with some of the places we go. Sometimes we play in front of 85,000 people – I have goose bumps even talking about it just now! We played England in the semi-finals at the Commonwealth Games and we were getting booed by about 30,000 people, then we won. They were pretty quiet after that!
How do you prepare yourself for each game – do you have any rituals?
I have to have the same breakfast every day in the week-long lead up to a game. I also have to have the same energy gel. I don’t know why, it’s just a habit.
What’s your favourite method of attack in your position?
Run hard, shoulder spike and defend.
Tell us about your training regime – are there any crazy records in the squad?
We have full-day training sessions on Monday, Wednesday and Friday each week. On Tuesday’s we do wrestling and on Thursday we have a day off. As for records, Ed Jenkins is pretty phenomenal in the gym. I think he lifted 250kg on a trap bar lift just the other day…
Do you have a really funny on-site or on-field moment you can share with our readers?
A few times during footy a squirrel grip will occur in a tackle. And in Dubai one of our players was scoring against New Zealand and the other player dove and pulled his shorts down.
For all the latest Rugby fixtures, head to www.rugby.com.au