Harry Randall says he is aware of criticism surrounding his size, but the Bristol Bears scrum-half believes the most important thing is he continues to put the hard work in on the pitch. The 23-year-old, who was a 2016 Junior World Cup winner with England at U20s, is one of the most exciting young players in the Gallagher Premiership, but that hasn’t stopped his size being highlighted as a potential weakness in some quarters.
At 5’8″ and 72kgs, Randall is not the most physically imposing scrum-half, but his superb form for Bristol is making light of any such concerns.
Speaking to RugbyPass’ Jim Hamilton, Randall said he uses any such negative comments as motivation.
“I’m kind of used to it by now. I mean, all my life I’ve been a small rugby player, I’ve never been a massive player, I never was going to be, and I think the way I go about it is just trying to prove myself on the pitch and how I go about things,” Randall said.
“I’d like to think that on the field, it doesn’t make too much of a difference as long as I am technically good and doing my job on the field, then it doesn’t necessarily matter about your size or shape.
“I’ve always had that mindset towards it. Sometimes it’s not nice to hear, ‘Oh, he’s too small,’ that kind of chat, which I’ve had all my career. It’s not the nicest thing to hear, but at the same time, it builds my confidence because I know within myself what I am capable of and if I keep working hard, it doesn’t matter about my size, I am capable of achieving good things.”
Randall is confident there is still a place for smaller scrum-halves in the modern game, pointing to the likes of New Zealand’s Aaron Smith and Springbok No 9 Faf de Klerk as evidence that talent is far more important that size.
“I definitely look up to some of the best 9s in the world, the likes of Faf and Aaron Smith, both quality scrum-halves, obviously two of the best in the world. It’s always good to look and see what they’re doing, and how I can implement some of the stuff they do into my game.
“Aaron Smith, I’ve looked up to him for a while, he’s still one of the best 9s in the world. It shows how his hard work (has paid off), he’s definitely not the biggest 9 in the world and he’s had a very very successful career.
“So it’s inspiration for myself that these small 9s are out there and are the best in the world. It is good to see.”
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