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Thomas signing decisive in persuading Ted Hill to stay at Worcester

Ted Hill

Ted Hill says the prospect of working with double Grand Slam-winning former Wales flanker Jonathan Thomas clinched his decision to re-sign with Worcester.

England prospect Hill recently reversed a decade-long tradition of Warriors losing their best young players by signing a new contract until 2022. With his future now secured, Hill declares it is full steam ahead for Worcester as well as his own Test ambitions.

Hill, capped once against Japan in November 2018, told The Rugby Paper: “I’m really pleased with the decision I’ve made. It’s exciting times at Sixways, as you can tell by a lot of re-signings we’ve made, and we’ve got a very positive vibe here.

“People really like this club and want to stay on, and we’ve got some positive changes being made next season so it should be a really good future.

“It’s vital as a club that we’ve got quality coaching and we’ve definitely had that with Rory Duncan, but Jonathan Thomas is a really positive signing for next season and I’m looking forward to dealing with him and learning from the vast knowledge he’s got.

“From a selfish perspective it’s good because he played in a similar position as me, played for Wales at a young age and went on to win lots of caps for them. Grand Slams, playing at World Cups…he knows what it’s like when it comes to all that, which is positive.”

Jonathan Thomas
Top coaching addition: Jonathan Thomas will re-join Worcester as a coach next season. Getty Images

It speaks volumes for Worcester’s progress under Alan Solomons that they retained Hill, with the 20-year-old revealing: “There was other interest, which is a really positive thing for me, and it was my first experience of that sort of stuff so it was an exciting time, but Worcester’s my home club and I’ve been here since I was young. It was a big decision and I wanted to make the right one, so I’m really pleased to be staying on here.

“Alan Solomons is a bit older than other directors of rugby but he’s got so much experience and knows what he’s talking about. When it came to re-signing, he gave me some really good advice, not just dismissive of others but advice meant to help me.”

England’s back row stocks are plentiful but Hill is ready to put his hand up, saying: “There’s a lot of competition in the Premiership and everyone’s got their strengths, but it’s about harnessing your own strengths and making sure you put the best case forward.

“I’m trying. It’s still early days for me and I’m only in my second season in the Premiership, but I feel like I’m settled now and I just try to improve with each game. That’s what England want to see and that’s what I’m aiming to provide for Worcester.”

With Worcester flying high ahead of this Friday’s trip to Gloucester, Hill added: “We want to be in that top six conversation. We’re there at the moment but we need to keep that momentum going because we really struggled at Kingsholm last season.

“It’s a hard place to play but we want to go there and show the best of ourselves because to be a top six team you need to perform away from home.”

NEALE HARVEY

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