It's an honour to lead the Black and Ambers, says Lee Beach
8:02am Wednesday 14th August 2013 in Latest Rugby
NEWPORT’S new captain Lee Beach says it is a “great privilege” to lead the Black and Ambers in their historic forthcoming season.
October sees the famous club celebrate the 50th anniversary of their great 3-0 win over the All Blacks at Rodney Parade in 1963.
Former Ospreys back rower Beach, 30, signed this summer after leaving London Welsh who were relegated from the Aviva Premiership.
After spending four years with the club, Wales’ 2009 Sevens World Cup-winning captain decided the time had come to quit professional rugby.
But it didn’t take him long to decide on where he would take his semi-pro career after getting a call from Newport head coach Sven Cronk.
“When Sven mentioned the opportunity of captaining the club before I signed, I just couldn’t turn it down – he told me it was the easiest signing he’d ever made!” Beach said.
“It’s a great privilege to be captain of Newport, especially in such an important season.
“The club has a great history and you get a sense of that when you look at the captain’s board in the club house – it’s such a big honour.”
Newport have struggled badly in recent seasons to challenge for trophies, but Beach, who won the Celtic League with the Ospreys, is hoping that soon changes.
“Newport has a big ambition as a club and we are looking at being at the top end of the league and not mid table,” he said.
The Premiership side began their pre-season campaign on Saturday with a hard-earned 26-24 away win at last season’s Championship runners-up Bargoed.
The Black and Ambers had to come back from a 14-0 half-time deficit at Bargoed Park and Beach, who made his Newport debut on the weekend, was pleased with the work out.
“It was good to get the cobwebs out of the way at Bargoed and it gave us a good idea of the things we need to work on,” he said.
“And our friendly with Moseley on Saturday will be a totally different challenge.”
Newport travel to play the Birmingham side (kick-off 3pm) who are in England’s second tier Championship.
The Black and Ambers’ competitive season gets under way when they play their great Gwent rivals Cross Keys away at Pandy Park on Saturday, August 31 (kick-off 2.30pm) in a British and Irish Cup play-off.