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Recent Graduate Sam Skinner in Premiership Start for Exeter Chiefs. Photo @PPAUK

Skinner Soars In First Premiership Start

Sam’s graduation ceremony, in which he achieved First Class Honours in BSc Business Economics, only occurred this summer. Now a key member in one of England’s premier rugby clubs, he has had his first start this season with Chiefs who were once again victorious over their counterparts Wasps.

Sam has reflected on how he is enjoying life as a full time professional rugby player by saying “Balancing a degree and training with Chiefs was definitely a good lesson in time management and I am know loving the luxury of being able to concentrate all my energy on rugby”.

Sam has had opportunities throughout his time with Chiefs whilst he was an undergraduate at University, experiencing 1st XV rugby in a Chiefs shirt across all competitions including Champions Cup and Premiership 7s, but the home fixture vs Wasps was his first start in the 5 shirt to date. He said that “I am very happy making my starting Prem debut, and enjoying the opportunities I have been given so far. We have had a good start to the season and we are looking to build on each week.”

Reflecting on Sam’s balancing act with University rugby and Chiefs we asked how the transition has been and if there have been any similarities moving across to full time Chiefs mode –

“I have been in the lucky position that Exeter Uni play very similar to Chiefs which has really helped the transition… The link between the University and the Chiefs is only getting stronger so it’s great to see more and more players getting opportunities at Chiefs either in training sessions, 7s competitions, academy matches, ‘A’ league or 1st XV games”. 

Looking forward to the rest of the season and Sam’s newly solidified profession, he has his eyes set on the very controllable not too distant future “My goals are to try and get consistent game time in the premiership and keep enjoying my rugby.” It is also worth a very big mention that off the back of Sam's first start he was selceted in David Flatman's Aviva Premiership Team of the Week!  With a solid grasp on his goals and performances earning him selections in 'Teams of the Week' we are definitely going to be keeping an eye on this former 1st XV University Captain.

Sam can still be seen on campus, but taking on a different role along with now ‘work colleagues’ and Exeter Chiefs team mates on Monday nights helping to coach this year’s members of Exeter University Rugby Football Club (EURFC) and ensure the link between the two is as strong as ever.

We look forward to watching many more EURFC Alumni feature in Chiefs teams over the coming year and years to come.

Written by James Fleming, Sport Scholarship Recruitment Offcier

Date: 29 September 2017