Kyle Steyn opens up on being named Glasgow Warriors captain and reveals 'clans' plan to connect with fanbase
Glasgow Warriors new captain Kyle Steyn believes that a key to the club’s future success is going to be better connecting to the city it calls home and to the people who live there.
While the players have been going through a gruelling pre-season training schedule during the last two months, they have also made time to get out and about to try and learn what makes Glaswegians tick.
Steyn believes that the benefits of this community outreach initiative can cut both ways, with players being inspired to perform better on the pitch at the same time as more potential fans are persuaded to get behind their local professional rugby teams.
“All the boys are divided into ‘clans’ and each clan has an area of Glasgow that they’ve got to go research,” he explained. “They’ve got to find charities in that area to support, they’ve got to find club legends who have come from those areas, and all that sort of thing.
“So, it is a big drive, and it won’t just be me but the whole leadership group pushing it, and we’ve got clan leaders as well.
“It is brilliant that there is a whole lot of leadership development going on within the squad and, at the same time, we’re driving our club to a place where we are better connecting with Glasgow and its people.
“When you go out there, you are surprised how many people want to have a chat, especially in Glasgow because it is such a down to earth city,” he continued.
“It is good for all of us as players, and especially guys like me who haven’t grown up in Glasgow, to get an understanding of different groups of people in the city and what makes them tick.
“We tried it last season but it kind of fizzled out. So, we’ve put a lot more emphasis on it this season to make sure that it is something substantial and sustainable.”
While recent Warriors captains have tended to be forwards who have been part of the club for most, if not all, of their pro careers, Steyn is an outside-back who only arrived in Glasgow in February 2019 having been born and raised in South Africa – but the new on-field leader of the team warns against this being viewed as some sort of revolution at the club.
“When you look at it from the outside, Ryan Wilson and Fraser Brown are certainly very different people to me, but we also have a lot of things in common,” he said. “They both love all the boys at the club and will do anything for them, and I’m the same.
“They’ve both got over 100 games for the club – Wilson is coming up on 200 – so they are deeply passionate about the club, as am I. So, it is a great opportunity for me to learn from them, take a lot of advice from them, but also just get in and start driving things myself.
“We’ve got a magnificent leadership group, full of really great men who I trust fully, and we have guys like Ryan, Fraser and Richie, if they are playing, who are great at that sort of thing as well. So, we’ll have plenty of leadership up front and in the mix, who know how to deal with the ref and that sort of thing. But I’ll make sure that I am in the thick of it as much as possible to.”
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