We speak a lot about the “DK Family”, and we do so because we believe in it! There are so many 3rd generation DK players coming up through the youth section being coached and supported by Dads, Mums and Grandparents. But the DK Family is more than that, it is also about lifelong friendships and supporting each other.
To demonstrate these DK “Family” ties we need look no further than the DK Vipers, our under 7’s on Saturday last.
This tale starts when the Burns family arrived at DK with their lad Jesse to join the Mighty Micros, our Under 6 team. Abby became Team Manager followed by Lee signing up as a coach (Lee’s dad, Robert is a former DK player). They also, through their company, Starmac Surfacing ltd sponsored the Micros as they now do for the Vipers (U7’s) and Abby continues to manage the Vipers and Lee is still coaching along with Mike Chivers, Matt Clarke and Dave Swinburne.
A few years ago the Micros lead coach, Ed Parry (former 1st XV captain) encouraged a couple of his students from Kinver School to help him with the coaching, so Jonny Jones and Rhys Harper, who were already playing in the DK Colts, came down to help out. Since then, Jonny and Rhys have graduated to the senior section and have both played 1st XV this season but they both continue to coach in the youth section, Jonny with the under 6 Micros and Rhys with the under 7 Vipers. Mike Chivers, Vipers coach, also came up through the youth section coached by his dad Tony (Mike has also played 1st XV this season). Tony also has 2 other lads, Rob and Neil who both played at 1st XV level, Rob now coaches the under 12’s and is the Youth Coaching Coordinator and Neil is a referee/assistant referee in the top flight. Abby and Lee also got involved with the DK Sponsor a player programme and so Rhys Harper is now sponsored/supported by Starmac Surfacing.
All of this made last Saturday very special. Rhys was selected to start at 10 for the 1st XV and the DK Vipers were the game Mascots. Rhys got to run out onto the 1st XV pitch for our last home game this season with the team he helps coach! The vipers watched the game from the stand cheering on the DK 1st XV to a great home win and put on a great display at half time. After the match when Rhys was heading for the changing rooms, he was mobbed by the mighty Vipers.
To see all the Vipers photos from Saturday CLICK HERE