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10 July 2013

Manager pleased with the way things are shaping up

Manager John Ward yesterday declared himself pleased with the facilities at Stoke Rochford Hall, his side’s Lincolnshire training camp for the week.

“It’s the first time that a football club has been based here and they have really pulled out all the stops to make us welcome. 

“The ground itself is excellent, which is the most important thing. Obviously rain is at a premium everywhere at the moment, but it’s pretty soft underfoot so we have some very good surfaces to work on and that’s as important to the players as anything else, and the food is good, so the players are happy!

“We have been made most welcome by the staff and everyone here and that’s rubbed off on the players really well. This is a young and impressionable squad, and we have to man manage that. It’s OK to drill hard sessions into them all the time but some of the 18 and 19 year olds are with us for the first time and maybe they suffer a little tweak or strain that they aren’t sure about so the staff have a very important role to play.”

Every member of his staff has an input in the incredibly well structured sessions.

“I’m particularly pleased with the way that Darrell Clarke and Marcus Stewart have linked together. I think it’s a good partnership and a good pairing. They are both very young, very ambitious, and good with players. 

The warm up and warm down sessions are key, not only to successful training sessions, but to avoiding injury during them.

 “We arrived here at lunch time on Monday and put in a long session in the afternoon. Another long session on Tuesday morning saw fitness consultant Mark Hammond extend the warm up. His work is very important, in that he prepares the players for intense training sessions. He also takes a warm down session after training and they are also very important. As I mentioned to the boys, even Andy Murray warmed down after winning at Wimbledon. It’s vital that the professionalism you see in someone like that, as an individual, rubs off on the players we have here and to be fair to them they are doing that really well.”

The manager was interviewed on Tuesday and the full interview is now available on Gas Player.

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