Josh Walker appointed new first-team skipper at Bury St Edmunds

Gavin Hogg

Gavin Hogg - Credit: Archant

Former Bury St Edmunds youngster Josh Walker has been named the club’s new first-team captain for the coming season.

He will be assisted by vice-captain Ollie Snook, while stalwart Chris Snelling takes on the role of Pro-am Teams Club Captain.

Walker, is one of 21 new signings at the Haberden and represents something of a coup for Hogg and his coaching team.

Aged 18, Walker was awarded a scholarship playing rugby in New Zealand and since his return, has featured for Bedwas in the Welsh Premiership.

“We are excited by Josh’s arrival, he is a second row who played his youth rugby at the club,” said Hogg.

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“The first year I came to the club he went off to university in Cardiff and has played out in New Zealand too so has experienced a different brand of rugby.

“It’s fantastic what he has achieved already, having played for England Students and in the Welsh Premiership and I know he is excited to come back and play at this level.

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“On and off the pitch he stands out.

“Ben Davey is another exciting addition. He has come from Sale and that background where he has experience playing professionally, so he is used to playing at that standard of rugby.”

It’s not just on the pitch where Bury have strengthened, however, the club delighted to add the services of defence and skills coach Damian McGrath.

McGrath is a former Rugby League professional with Yorkshire club Batley, who has spent the last two years as an assistant coach at England Sevens and also worked with England, during Clive Woodward’s spell as head coach.

“Damian took his first session on Thursday night, doing defence work with the guys, and he got a great reaction. He has got such pedigree and experience,” said the former Stowmarket coach.

“We have always been renowned for being a good attacking side but we have also got to a be very aggressive go-forward team from a defensive point-of-view.”

Meanwhile, Hogg hopes the influx of new signings, plus the feel-good factor at Bury, will continue to draw the crowds.

“There was nearly 1,500 there on the final day of last season when we were promoted and that’s what we want to take into the new campaign,” he said.

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