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Hampton Captains Series: Cameron Hill

By Arun Crowe

What are the main responsibilities of being a captain?

There’s quite a lot, obviously you’ve got to look out for your teammates and your peers, make sure everyone gets to where they need to be on time, those off the pitch kind of things – turning up to training early, just making sure that everything’s organised so that a little bit of stress is out the coach’s hair. On the pitch it’s different, it’s more of a leadership role. Trying to motivate everyone and make sure everything on the pitch goes as planned, but obviously it’s not just the captain who does everything – it makes it a lot easier when your peers are helping and contributing, but it’s enjoyable.

What do you enjoy most, and least, about being captain?

We get a certain degree of respect from our teammates which is quite nice, and obviously it’s a label, but it doesn’t actually really mean much. I feel like the captain, your just part of the team, it’s still the same thing, you’re no different to any of the other players, but the main perks are you get a degree of respect from your peers, in the lower years especially. Negatives wise, I guess it’s just a little bit more stressful as there’s a little bit more responsibility on your shoulders, especially if the team loses, but that’s also shared throughout the whole team, not just the captain.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced during your rugby career at Hampton?

Competing with the other big major schools like Millfield, the Sedberghs, trying to compete on the same kind of scale, as they’ve got a set amount of money set aside for scholarships for rugby, while Hampton is more balanced academically and sporting wise.

What is the highlight of your Hampton rugby career?

Oh, just playing with my mates, week in week out. The most enjoyable time I’ve had is just on the rugby pitch with my mates, in the wet and the rain, when it’s muddy and soaking, laughing about just after a big win.

If you could give any advice to aspiring rugby players at Hampton in the lower years, what would it be?

Just enjoy it. Just enjoy playing with your mates and treasure it, because it flies by so quickly. I’m in my final few months of school now, and I’m reminiscing about ever since year 7, just playing sevens tournaments with the same coaches who are coaching you now, the likes of Mobsy, Mr Beattie, still with the same mates who I’ve played with since I was eleven years old.

Have you, personally, got any aspirations for rugby beyond Hampton?

Obviously I’m going to go off to Uni, try and play Uni standard, which is quite a high level. I’m not too interested in contracts or anything professional, I just want to make sure I enjoy my rugby and make great mates alongside it.

Obviously rugby is a very physically demanding sport, so how much training do you do every week normally?

There’s a lot of stuff behind the curtain that you don’t see, especially with pre-season training, trying to get your match fitness up, as well, as you mentioned, with the physical side of it. A lot of rehab goes in, because I’ve had quite a few injuries in my time, so I’ve had to go through quite long periods of rehab, getting back to strength.

Do you support a rugby team, and if so, do you go to many matches?

I do, I’m a local Quins supporter. I like to go down there with my mates on a weekend, big fan of Marcus Smith especially.

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