Recently-retired pro rugby player James King is set to make a comeback in the area where he learned his trade, writes Fiona Scott.
The 27-year-old centre turned pro straight out of Berwick High School and made his debut for the Border Reivers as an 18-year-old. When that club was closed down by the SRU, he played in New Zealand and then Italy, with L’Aquila, before returning to Scotland and rejoining Melrose.
After a few months out of the game he returned and was quickly snapped up by Edinburgh. However, after just two seasons in the capital, King has been released, and, after struggling with a groin injury, has decided to use his experience in more of a coaching capacity.
King is joining forces with another promising young talent who has similarly been released by Edinburgh due to lengthy battles with injury, 26-year-old lock Steve Turnbull. The pair are launching a series of summer camps, starting in Galashiels, across the country under the banner of “Pro’s Life.”
Talking to The Southern about his new venture, King said: “We are both keen to stay involved in the game. Obviously, being from the Borders I wanted to come to the area and run a camp giving kids the chance to experience pro rugby with input from professional players and coaches.”
King believes that a big focus on fun and enjoyment is one of the most important aspects of playing sport and the camp itself will be a unique experience, designed to show the kids everything involved in a normal day’s training. There will be everything from rugby-specific sessions through to nutrition clinics where the duo will be portraying a key message of healthy living.
“The attendees will have the opportunity to get an insight into what the best professional rugby players in the country eat for dinner,” explained King.
“They will receive the favourite recipes from players such as Kelly Brown, Lee Jones and many more.”
King and Turnbull have already visited Galashiels Academy and will be going to other schools throughout the Borders over the next month.
“The feedback we got at Galashiels was great and there have been a number of sign-ups already,” added King.
Pro’s Life will be at Netherdale, Galashiels, on July 8 for six days. Monday to Wednesday will be open to 13 to 15-year-olds and Thursday to Saturday for 10 to 12-year-olds.
There will be a limited number of places available.
Visit www.proslife.co.uk or firstname.lastname@example.org for further information and bookings.