CEO Wray pens 'powerful' letter to Saracens fans after Prem final
Saracens CEO Lucy Wray penned an extensive open letter to her club’s fans while sitting in the car on her way home from Twickenham following last Saturday’s agonising defeat for Mark McCall’s side in the Gallagher Premiership final. The 2021 Championship champions continued their rebound from their automatic relegation from the Premiership for repeated breaches of the salary cap by challenging at the top end of the top flight all through the 2021/22 campaign and but for a last-gasp Freddie Burns drop goal, Saracens would have taken the final versus Leicester to extra time.
Wray, the daughter of Nigel who gave up his majority stake in the club as part of last October’s £32million takeover, has now written a 1,600-word hot-take synopsis on the efforts of Saracens to become Premiership champions again for the first time since 2019.
“I’m sitting in the car on the way back from Twickenham as I write this,” began Wray in her piece titled, ‘A message from our CEO’. “It is very hard to put down in words all the things I would like to say to our Sarries family. It was so nearly the fairy tale ending we all wanted but trust me when I say that we have an incredibly special group with phenomenally special people who firmly believe that this is just the start of the next decade of memories.
“Until today, we had not lost a men’s final in quite a long time and you forget how awful it feels, but it also motivates you massively to go again. Look at our brilliant women’s rugby team who lost in the final twelve months ago and came back this season to win it in such emphatic style.
“Or as Rudyard Kipling put it: ‘If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster and treat those two imposters just the same.’ We have a remarkable group of players and I hope they, and their families, know how proud they make us every day. From a men’s perspective, over 2,000 minutes were played in the Premiership this season and it comes down to three points in the last two minutes.
“That does not define a season. Or in the words of our main club partner City Index: ‘We simply couldn’t be prouder of Saracens for giving it their all today. And knowing this team of winners, the rebuilding and preparation for next season starts now. It’s been an epic season with so many memorable moments and we couldn’t be more honoured to have been with you all the way.’
“Well… we couldn’t be more proud to call City Index and StoneX our partners because they took a chance on us and their backing is a massive reason why we are where we are today. Thank you.
“I couldn’t not say a few words on Mark McCall. A brilliant rugby mind with an eagle eye for detail. He avoids the limelight but he is the driving force behind the men’s team performance. Yet his biggest strength is away from the rugby field. He cares deeply about all the players and staff, taking a real interest in their lives.
“He empowers the people around him and helps them fulfil their potential as players, coaches or staff. I have learnt a huge amount from him. He once said to me: ‘Every day I come to work and think about how I make this the best possible place for my players and staff to be. I do this every day.’ A quiet man with a big heart who would always have your back. We are so lucky to have you and your family, Mark. Thank you.
“We have come a long way in two years. You can never do things on your own and a lot of people massively stood up. A special mention to Philip Morrow whom I could not have done without being by my side. I do believe that our relationships are now so powerful because of what we have been through together.
“I have learnt so much over the past 24 months and in many ways, I wouldn’t change it because I genuinely believe that we are so much stronger than ever because of this shared experience and having to come together like never before.”
Wray went on to compliment the Saracens women’s rugby team, the Mavericks netball team and the staff at the club that progressed the development of the StoneX with a major building project despite the current economic environment. “The atmosphere at the semi-final against Harlequins gave me goosebumps,” continued Wray.
“Our fans are ‘simply the best’ and in my heart will always be No1. You have had to endure a lot and you have held your heads high, remained graceful and never wavered in your loyalty to this club. I promise next season will be another epic adventure and we need you!
“I often get asked what makes Sarries unique as a club? Caring for each other like we’re family. Those people, in turn, care so deeply about the organisation and our collective ambition that there is a genuine belief that together we can achieve anything we put our minds to. Seeing the best in each other, allowing people to be themselves and feel safe, secure and happy.
“Saracens is not a place nor a person, it is a collective spirit and energy that binds people, through shared experiences and memories. In many ways, I have the best job in the world because I get to work with phenomenal people who I call friends and for an organisation that I feel so proud to be part of… Our story has plenty more chapters and we look forward to sharing every moment with you. We go again – the hard work starts now!”
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