Warwick-based performers host sword fighting session for Wasps

Wasps players have taken battling spirit to another level ahead of their home clash with Saracens – by taking up medieval sword fighting with knights.

A team of knights rode into the club’s Broadstreet training base to deliver a rallying cry to the players during their lunch ahead of the Gallagher Premiership clash at Ricoh Arena on Friday (February 21), before delivering a training session on some of the key sword-fighting manoeuvres from medieval times.

Kieran Brookes, Gabriel Oghre, Jack Owlett, Sione Vailanu and Sam Wolstenholme were transported back to a different era by performers at Warwick-based Dressed To Kill as they re-enacted aspects of Italian sword-fighting dating back to 1409.

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The knights’ surprise appearance at Broadstreet also served as a warm-up for the knights themselves as they prepare to perform a duel on Ricoh Arena’s pitch during the half-time interval between Wasps and Saracens.

Wasps players with knights from Dressed To Kill. Photo submitted

And Wasps supporter Lewis Copson, from Dressed To Kill, believes the skills needed to succeed as a medieval knight or a modern-day rugby player are just the same.

He said: “Your hand and eye co-ordination have to be specific and right, and if there’s the slightest mistake, just like if you were in a scrum or throwing a pass, then things are going to go wrong.

“The players came out on to the training pitch not really knowing what to expect and thought ‘this will be a bit of a laugh’, but then you could see they were really determined to get the hang of the attack and defence drills.

“The players seemed to really enjoy learning about the medieval age and hopefully they can transmit the battling spirit from our training session out on to the pitch under the Friday night lights.”

Lewis and his colleagues will be forming two teams during their half-time duel, which will see Wasps Warriors taking on Saracens Knights.

Wasps prop Kieran Brookes added: “Some of the boys are big Game of Thrones fans so they were really interested in the session and I found it fun.

“It wasn’t your average training session, that’s for sure, but it required a lot of concentration and the swords were quite heavy – so it was a good workout physically and mentally, and will live long in the memory!.”

Tickets to Wasps versus Saracens can be purchased by visiting www.wasps.co.uk