Alan Solomons is predicting a quartet of Worcester players will be in action in the opening round of the inaugural Autumn Nations Cup, a level of representation that will help change perceptions about the Gallagher Premiership club.


Previously, Worcester only gained England recognition through Ben Te’o, the former rugby league centre whose appearances for the Premiership club were limited by injury and Test call-ups. 

Scotland back row Dave Denton left Worcester to join Leicester in 2018, Wales wing Josh Adams, headed over the Severn Bridge to join the Dragons while Joe Taufete’e, the USA hooker who holds the world record for tries in that position, is now playing for Lyon.

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However, Worcester have home-grown stars Ollie Lawrence and club captain Ted Hill on course to appear for England against Georgia on Saturday at Twickenham while Duncan Weir and Cornell du Preez are in the Scotland squad to play Italy.

Solomons, the club’s vastly experienced director of rugby, is adamant Worcester have the ability to deliver Test-class talent from its academy system, viewing Hill and Lawrence as the point men in proving you do not need to move to a higher profile Premiership outfit to catch the eye of international coaches.

“I’m hoping that Ollie Lawrence and Ted Hill will be involved for England against Georgia. That would be fantastic, with Duncan Weir and Cornell du Preez playing for Scotland. Duncan has shown good form for us and now gets that opportunity with Scotland. Playing for Worcester in the Premiership has been recognised with both of those guys called up by Gregor Townsend,” said Solomons.


“There are certain perceptions (about the club) but having two of our home-grown lads Ollie and Ted coming through is a great boost for the club and our young players. We want home-grown players at the core of the club and the more with international experience the better. When they come back into camp they add real value.”

The new Premiership season kicks off on November 20. With a national lockdown in place in England, that means empty stadiums and no gate income, a situation which mirrors the conclusion of last season. 

As a result, there are continuing concerns over the financial viability of clubs in the English top-flight if crowds are not allowed back into matches, while the second-tier Championship is still waiting to discover if it will have a January start. 

Worcester’s final game of last season was cancelled due to positive tests among the Sale squad and the threat of further disruption remains despite Solomons’ upbeat message. “The news we are getting about the vaccine is putting everyone in a very positive frame of mind,” he said. 


“I’m no expert but the vaccine looks very promising from what everyone is saying. I am being an optimist and by the spring things will be back to normal and we will have crowds back. There has been so much written about the vaccine to make me confident.

The experience of last season has been invaluable going forward and apart of the last game with Sale, there were no hiccups. As we haven’t played for five weeks, to have a hit out against Northampton on Friday is positive before the start of the new season. 

“I have been involved with professional rugby since 1997 and have never seen a season like the one we are going to play, but we have never had a pandemic like this and so it is unchartered waters and it is important we play to keep clubs financially viable. We have to make that sacrifice just as so many people have done.”

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