Conrad Cade promoted to first team squad

Friday 13 May 2022 Written by: Adam

The 25-year-old County Durham native made his first team debut against Gloucester this season, and has gone on to make four senior appearances.

Playing his junior rugby with Durham City RFC and Durham county, Cade attended Leeds Beckett University, where he achieved a degree in sports coaching and a masters in strength and conditioning as well as representing England Students.

Joining the Falcons initially through their associate academy route and then graduating to senior academy status in 2019, Cade’s ascension into the first team squad continues the Falcons’ tradition of developing their own players.

He said: “It’s been good this season, to get that taste of playing for the first team and keeping on developing. I want to continue that into next year, make further improvements and then just see where it takes me.

“Moving from the senior academy into the first team squad doesn’t mean too much of a change in any practical sense because I’ll still be doing all the same training as I currently am, but it’s definitely nice from a mental point of view to be officially known as someone who has come through the academy into the senior squad.

“It continues that feeling that you’re progressing and continuing to build yourself up as a player, but I know I’ve still got a lot of hard work ahead of me. I want to develop every area of my game, and as a prop a lot of that revolves around the scrum. Through experience and with the help of the coaches I’ll look to take that onto the next level, as well as obviously every other area of my game.

“From a personal point of view it’s also nice to be able to represent my local Premiership club. We’ve got a huge amount of talent within our area and the club does a good job bringing it through, so it’s good to be a part of that and stay close to my family and friends while playing at the top level.”

Forwards coach Micky Ward said: “Conrad went down to Doncaster for half a season last year, and did really well. We were particularly impressed with how he coped in the set-piece, because the Championship is a tough league with a lot of good scrummaging teams.

“He was one of the form loose-heads in the Championship until around Christmas when we brought him back, and he’s continued that progress since returning to us. If we can get another good pre-season into him, get him in the gym and put a bit more beef on, then he’ll push on and become a real contender next season.”

On his progression into the first team ranks, Ward added: “Moving from the senior academy into the first team squad won’t change much for him in a day-to-day sense, but I think it’s important for a player to get that reward of knowing they’ve stepped up to the next rung on the ladder.

“For some players it gives them that bit more confidence of knowing they’re no longer a senior academy player, even if in a practical sense he’s basically following the same programme.

“It’s also nice to hear plenty of local accents around the place with Conrad being a Durham lad, and we take a lot of pride in bringing through the lads from our area.”

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