Tony Clubb discusses how pre-season has changed throughout his career as Wigan Warriors prepare for the 2020 Betfred Super League season.
The prop admits training is a lot harder than when he first started playing the game.
- Clubb: “Everyone has come back in good shape and worked hard, and that has proved in our tests as we are looking in good nick.”
Tony Clubb says pre-season training has changed ‘massively’ since the early days of his career as Wigan Warriors gear up for the 2020 Betfred Super League season.
Since starting the game in 2006, the prop admits things are much harder now than they used to be.
He said: “It wasn’t so technical when I started - you just ran to a pole and back but now you’ve got GPS vests and everything is timed because you’ve got certain targets to hit. It is a lot harder and the massive change is ridiculous.
“It has varied and has only got better as it shows where you need to be as an individual and as a team. It is just the little things like hand-eye coordination with tennis balls and more wrestling, but running wise it is still the same and you still go until you drop.
💪✅ One-week on since the squad returned for the pre-season testing day, here's a snapshot of what the lads have been up to this week at Robin Park Arena #WiganMade #ExcelsInExtremes @PrestoneUK pic.twitter.com/D6srz8Do3H— Wigan Warriors 🍒⚪️ (@WiganWarriorsRL) November 22, 2019
“It is always good to be back with the lads. As daft as it sounds although you want to be away, you also want to be back here as well. Everyone has come back in good shape and worked hard, and that has proved in our tests as we are looking in good nick.”
Although pre-season will prepare the squad well, the 32-year-old says nothing can replicate a match day.
“It will put us in good stead in terms of being fit for Round 1, but it will take a good two or three games before you are battle hardened. Replicating matches with the Reserves and Under-18s isn’t as full on as it is when you are in an actual game.”
He added: “You want to get as fit as you can before Christmas. You feel good in the first few weeks because you’re not taking that bashing every week - it is more the middle period of the season when it starts kicking in.”
Despite that, one thing that excites him this season is the number of youngsters available to Adrian Lam’s selection.
“Obviously we know about the lads from last season, who are no longer young kids, but we have a few more who I am massively excited about, especially for me being a bit older and having seen them come through the Academy.”
Clubb believes opening day opponents, Warrington Wolves, are one of the hardest opponents they could’ve received in Round 1.
“There probably isn’t a harder way to start - they could be just as hard as St Helens last year because they’ve recruited well. It will be a good test of how pre-season has gone for us.”
Proud then. Proud always. #WiganMade— Wigan Warriors 🍒⚪️ (@WiganWarriorsRL) November 24, 2019
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