• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Happy playing for the Jersey

Most teenagers would travel anywhere to play the sport they love, but when an offer comes in to play on an island with less than 100,000 population, they might have to think twice about it.

Glenn Bryce did not have any hesitation in setting off to Jersey in the summer of 2011 though and now the full-back is flourishing at the English Championship club.

Bryce, a former Alloa, Stirling County and Heriot's player, takes up the story on how that move came about 18 months ago.

"After I finished playing in the under-20s World Cup, I asked the video analyst if he could make me a highlights video with all my best clips and I was soon linked up with an agent.

"I then got a phone call from the agent when I was working on a roof and he said 'I may have a full-time contract for you'. I was totally overwhelmed and was just picturing everything in that moment.

"Everyone needs a lucky break in life and that was mine. I quickly got down off the roof and was asking my agent what club and for all the details.

"He explained that Jersey were looking to get promoted to the Championship and this would provide me with exposure to a higher standard of rugby and help me develop my career. I phoned my dad straight away and told him all about the good news. He was really happy for me and I knew it would be a fresh start with new people and a new club."

Off the rugby field, Bryce, now 21, was working as an apprentice joiner at the time in Stirling and was in his last year so had to sit a trade test to become qualified.

"The news from my agent couldn't have come at a better time as I had my exam the following week after he contacted me about Jersey. After sitting my exam I had to wait a week before I knew if I had passed.

"However, before I found out the result I had to break the news to my boss, David Dunsire, that I was going to take the contract with Jersey.

"I managed to pass my exam and I was so shocked I couldn't believe in the space of a month I had signed a professional rugby contract and had become a qualified joiner as well."

He then joined up with the island club for their first season in England's National One under a big-name player-coach in the former Wales cap Ben Evans.

Along with Bryce they recruited other players such as David Bishop, Kingsley Lang and Ross Broadfoot and, despite losing their season opener against Fylde, went on to gain promotion to the Championship.

Evans left his post at Jersey last month, but Bryce is still loving life there. "Now in my second season at Jersey I am really enjoying it; the set-up is great. There are some stunning places to visit.

"My family are very supportive and my mum has been over a couple times and my dad and step mum have also travelled to Jersey.

"Unfortunately, my brother Kevin [who plays for Heriot's] and my twin sister Gemma have yet to get the chance to see the island. My brother always chats to me after each game though to see how we are getting on," Bryce added.

This coming weekend Bryce and his Jersey team- mates host Leeds Carnegie in the British & Irish Cup.

Contextual targeting label: 
Families

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

134447