Clive premier rugby halfback Rob Murray may get a few extra press ups at training tonight after revealing the secret behind their first win of the season last weekend.
"Up until recently we had only been training for an hour on Tuesday and Thursday nights. We extended the sessions to 90 minutes and that resulted in our first intense 80 minute effort of the season. Before that we had gradually gone from 20 minutes of good rugby to 40 and then 60," Murray explained.
Murray, 36, scored two tries in a player-of-the-match performance for Clive as they beat Central 22-12 at Farndon Park to become the 13th weekly winner in the Tui Hawke's Bay Today Club Rugby Player of the Year award.
A top feat for a bloke who had only planned on "making up the numbers" for Clive's reserve grade this season and a player who hadn't played for seven years when he turned out for Clive's reserves midway through last season.
"Hopefully Saturday's win will be the spark we need for another couple before the season ends. We're getting more guys turning up for training now which wasn't always the case because of shift work," Murray explained.
The former Manawatu Maori and Manawatu Secondary Schools representative pointed out the return of former Magpie Paul Bailey has made a big difference to the side. A few other players in key positions have also returned from injuries.
Murray regarded former Magpie and Central Vikings halfback Charlie Beetham as the best halfback he marked when playing in Manawatu. He is predicting a big future for Taradale halfback Jonathan Ruru who he ranked as the best he has marked in Hawke's Bay to date.
Murray runs Planet Turf in Hawke's Bay and said the physical aspects of his landscaping and renovating work keeps him fit for rugby.
"I had a desk job during the five years I was working in Aussie and I got up to 95kg. Now I'm back to 78kg which is an ideal playing weight," Murray said.
"Because I run my own business I have to do my best to avoid injuries. But all going well I'll be back again next season ... I'm sure a couple of the other old fellahs like the two Sams will give me a hurry up," Murray said referring to Clive loosies Sam Ebbitt and Sam Christie.