French style of windward caution is ‘refreshing’, says new RC Vannes center Henry Trinder
Having spent most of his life in the familiar waters of Gloucester, Henry Trinder has now plunged into the depths, seeing this season with RC Vannes’ Top 14 in north-west France. For the Cirencester-born center which arrived at Hartpury College where Gloucester still trains in his mid-teens, and never left until a few weeks ago, it’s not so much a new start, but rather more close to restarting your career at the age of 32.
“It’s very strange to go down to the training ground in the streets of Vannes, in a different gym, a very different style of rugby in France, and the crash course that I had to make Vannes crack. the end of the season. and pushing for that Top 14 is very exciting, “Trinder told Telegraph Sport.” The first team meeting to introduce you to – I’ve never had to do this before! “
With his introduction and upcoming song – Uncle Kracker’s “ Follow Me ”, for those wondering – Trinder’s attention is now focused on promoting Vannes from the Second Division into the French top flight. After 172 appearances and 46 tries for Gloucester over a span of 14 years, it will be hard to imagine him racing in anything other than cherry and white, having made his debut for a Gloucester team with Peter Buxton, Andy Hazell and Akapusi Qera, with Trinder coming off the bench to replace Leon Lloyd.
Trinder’s contract was due to expire at the end of this season, after battling to start at 13 with Scottish-form center Chris Harris. Even the thought of leaving the Cotswolds marks a seismic change in his life, let alone his career.
“Obviously I’ve been at Gloucester my whole career, I grew up in Gloucester. I haven’t moved within a 20 mile radius since I was very young, ”says Trinder.
“How was it in Gloucester, it was great to be part of the team but George [Skivington] was pushing me through the younger ones and I think my opportunities became limited with my performances so for me it was an opportunity to go somewhere and contribute and really experience something different. [Playing abroad] always seduced me. When that happened and they were interested in having me right away to contribute, I jumped at the chance.
“It ended on a high note with Gloucester, and I think that’s probably the best way to go. You see a lot of players who have stagnated and don’t play throughout the season who aren’t allowed to go, while Gloucester has been great to me. I am grateful. “
Recognizing the strengths of Harris and his center colleagues Billy Twelvetrees and Mark Atkinson, Trinder was aware that he was facing an uphill battle for the selection after his injury to Achilles last summer. He also spotted a rising star of the future breakthrough in Tom Seabrook, on the verge of appropriating Gloucester’s backline, just as Trinder did with his thrilling attacking ability as a youngster towards the end of the 2000s.
“Tom Seabrook just needs that exposure, he’s going to be a fantastic player when he’s older. He’s a utility right now, but you’ll see him take a starting spot very soon,” Trinder said.
Trinder was never capped at Test level by England but a regular with the Saxons, always desperately close to being cruelly denied by fate, with injuries to the ACL, Achilles, hamstrings and the shoulder always seeming to strike at the cruelest moment.
“When I found my feet in the [Gloucester] squad and my form again, I was picking up a hit and normally they were pretty long, out of the way. It was frustrating towards the end, ”he admits.
Highlights include memorable European games against Toulouse and La Rochelle, but a game with a certain group of downstairs neighbors remains the pinnacle, which Trinder discussed with his new teammate at Vannes, the former Bath full-back. , Nick Abendanon.
“For me, it’s always been the Bath games. The more players and coaches that come in, you can lose a bit of that bite and what that means, because at the end of the day, every game is so important and must win, but for me the accumulation of Bath games has always been great. [Nick] Abendanon being here, you remember those games, some scuffles, shall we say, we had. I think I had the chance to experience good times, great victories. “
Trinder and Abendanon are joined at Vannes, comfortably second in ProD2, by more familiar Premiership faces to Andy Symons – previously with Worcester, Gloucester and Northampton – as well as Darren Barry who signed from Newcastle this week. Trinder has only been training for a few weeks but has already seen enough to know that in France the more caution is put to the wind, the better.
“To see rugby succeed in a different way than how it is seen in the Premiership by most teams is telling. I have been at the same club and have had five different head coaches, all of whom had different backgrounds. different views on the game but were all very similar in terms of tactics and risk strategies I would say. While here the emphasis is overwhelmingly on offense, and I like to be more known for my attacking ability as well as my defense. see these French people play how they play. “