Earlier this season - before the Coronavirus pandemic hit the sporting world - prop Josh Reynlds spoke to 'Fired Up' magazine about his development and the environment at Dragons...
Powerful prop Jos Reynolds insists he is ‘learning from the best’ and in the perfect environment to develop as he looks to make his way at Dragons.
Dragons Academy graduate Reynolds has been tipped as one of the young front row stars to look out for at the region since his debut in November 2017 against Scarlets.
The loosehead has been a regular part of the first team match day squad this season and added plenty of grunt from the bench in the opening half of the campaign.
The 21-year-old was also one of super six Academy products to be handed new long-term deals at the start of the season by boss Dean Ryan – alongside Taine Basham, Lennon Greggains, Max Williams, Connor Edwards and Dan Babos.
“We have a responsibility to get our environment right to ensure we are not only developing but also retaining our best young talent,” said Ryan back in October.
“These contracts are a positive step forward for us and we look forward to watching players like Josh develop and earn further opportunities in the senior set-up.”
The former Newport High School pupil has it all to look forward to and he admits picking the brains on his more experienced team-mates has been his top priority.
“I've managed to get some game time and now it is all about looking to kick on," said Reynolds.
“I have learnt such a lot from the older boys here. They have really helped me since the start of the season and you are learning from the very best.
“Brok (Harris) has been absolutely great,” he added. “Being the same position as me, it’s great to talk to him and he is really experienced and knows precisely what he is talking about.
“Every time I need something I always go to him first to get his advice and guidance.
“I really do feel like I am in the best environment to learn. The front row have played so many games and know what they are doing.”
Reynolds has been with at Dragons since he was a teenager and is part of a young crop that have come through and are now knocking on the senior door.
“Dean has been great,” said Reynolds. “He has come in with a fresh perspective and given us opportunities.
"He’s said if you are good enough, work hard and are ready, then you will get the chance.
“Everyone wants to play every week and I’ve been able to get some game time and hopefully that will carry on.
“I’ve been at the region since I was 15 and have come through with a number of the lads,” he added.
“We’re very tight as a group, have all been together through the Academy system.
“I socialise with a lot of them, I went to school with a lot of them, and played club rugby with most of them. We’re all close friends and enjoy hanging out.”
Reynolds first turned heads this season with the Dragons XV in the Celtic Cup - and he not only offered front row power!
The Newport-born prop grabbed a brace of tries in a narrow high-scoring defeat to Scarlets A and also went over the line at Rodney Parade against Munster A.
“The Celtic Cup was really good for me – I think I scored more than some of the backs,” he laughed.
“It was a great showcase for the younger lads and chance to impress on a big stage, with some games played at Rodney Parade.
“It’s valuable game time at the start of the new season and something to build upon."
And as for the future, his focus is clear.
To keep working hard,” said Reynolds, who has previously featured for Bedwas, Cross Keys and Newport in the Premiership.
“I’ve still got lots to learn but I’m in the best place to do that and look to what the next few years hold.”
Brok has been absolutely great... Being the same position as me, it’s great to talk to him and he is really experienced and knows precisely what he is talking about...