Holm Truths: Henry Trinder fighting to find form
The greatest pressure on Henry Trinder comes from within.
The smart centre appreciates time to find top form – but will not take it for granted.
HENRY Trinder is struggling to find form.
Everyone at Kingsholm knows – but no one is on his back about it.
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Gloucester boss Nigel Davies is allowing Trinder to fight back to his best in his own time.
The classy centre appreciates the gesture – but admitted he is piling the pressure on himself to rediscover his touch.
Last season the 23-year-old from Cirencester forced his way to the cusp of Six Nations action with England.
But then two quick-fire injuries ravaged the rest of his campaign.
First he damaged ankle ligaments, and no sooner did he hit fitness than he sustained a broken jaw.
The hangover has spilled into this season, even though Trinder has had an unblemished run through pre-season.
Trinder feels he is making progress – but will not be content until he can surpass last year's pre-injury form.
He explained: "After those injuries last season, I think it takes a bit of time to get back to the level that you want.
"I've had all pre-season to come back and be fit, but you can train as hard and as much as you want, but when you get out there it's completely different.
"There's so many other factors that affect you, and it's more mental than anything else.
"People talk about experience helping, but sometimes you just need a run of games and then things will click back into place.
"I don't think I'm anywhere near where I was last year, I'm showing glimpses but I think I'm just making too many mistakes at the moment.
"It's little things that are second nature once you're into a run and in form that you don't even need to think about. At the moment I'm not quite getting those.
"So it's a bit frustrating that that doesn't come straightaway, but I feel as though I'm slowly getting there.
"I think Nigel and Tinds (Mike Tindall) have managed me very well so far this year.
"Nige tries to tap into what I'm thinking and take things from there, and that's a bit of a new approach for me, and I really appreciate that.
"So now it's for me to knuckle down, train hard, and try to find that top form again.
"No-one is putting huge pressure on me to manage all that overnight though, and I do appreciate the fact they understand it can sometimes take a little bit of time.
"To be honest, I'm putting more pressure on myself than anyone else is on me – and the coaches know that.
"I think all the players will be the same. You're the hardest person on yourself when you know you're not producing what you think you can.
"By people giving you that positive feedback and constructive criticism, that can really give you confidence and help you kick on.
"That's what I think I need most, I appreciate not being shouted at!
"I'm happy with how things are working, how the club is shaping up, what our vision is and where we want to go."
Hailing Gloucester's midfield variety, Trinder said he is revelling in working with new player-backs coach Tindall – in spite of the motivational quotes.
He continued: "At the beginning of the season everyone's been playing really well and there's always competition for places.
"It's piling up the pressure for everyone to perform, and that's great pressure.
"There's a great atmosphere at the club, and everyone's being kept on their toes.
"You can pick players for different games, and that's a great situation: there's 'Breakdown Billy' Twelvetrees who's doing really well on that front at the minute, so Sarge (Paul Moriarty) is loving him for that.
"But he and Tinds have been playing well, and I think I'm trying to find my feet.
"To be fair to Tinds, he's been doing really well.
"He's been reading books, listening to tapes and he's taken it by the horns really.
"It could be a difficult position for him, because he really wants to play every week, but at the same time he's got to coach us as well.
"It's a half and half now, and he needs to know when to step forward and when to step back, but he understands all of that.
"So he's coming out with motivational quotes all over the place, and that's given a bit of banter – but it also shows how seriously he's taking it all.
"Nigel has been in that position before though, so he understands it and he's helping Tinds through it all as well.
"But Tinds is great, we've worked together for a few years now, he knows me very well and he knows how to help get the best out of me which is great.
"If I'm doing something wrong he tells me about it, he knows how to get it across and he's been there, done that, so you've got to listen.
"And at the same time we're competing for a place in the side, so that's a great battle as well.
"He still makes it very hard for me, he's a great player and he's still got a huge amount to offer the side and the club.
"For me personally, and I think for a lot of the other young backs, it was a big thing that Mike stayed.
"He can hit the nail on the head with us, he knows us inside out as a group of developing players.
"He knows just how to hold the reins down, to reel us in and make us think pragmatically.
"Being a bit selfish, thinking about my own development, it's great to have him here, so I'm very happy about that!"
YOU CAN FEEL HOW MUCH FANS WANT THE WIN AGAINST BATH
JIM Hamilton will be bouncing off the walls, James Simpson-Daniel will be quietly running through his game – and Henry Trinder will be somewhere in the middle.
When Gloucester go through their final warm-ups at Kingsholm this afternoon, Trinder will make a point of taking it all in for a moment.
The 23-year-old knows the derby is what counts most – and he believes that will be reflected in the passion exhibited all day long.
He explained: “People sitting in pubs chatting between themselves, and when they come up to you in the street, this game is all they want to talk about.
“The atmosphere’s amazing, the whole stadium is packed, and it’s more emotion than anything else, you can feel the buzz from the pitch and you can feel how much the fans want the win.
“You can really feed off that – it’s always great when the crowd’s on your side!
“And this is the one we always need to win.
“Some players sit on their own, won’t really talk, and they will be going through their own game in their mind.
“And others will be screaming, shouting, hitting walls, screaming the house down.
“Hazey for instance, when you play with him, every game is like playing against Bath, every game is like a World Cup final.
“The emotion that he shows is literally like nothing I’ve ever seen before.
“What it means to him to play for Gloucester, when you see that you’re left in no doubt what it’s all about.
“And Jim Hamilton is very similar. He speaks, everyone listens, and he gets us in the right frame of mind.
“He just gets it spot-on, and for someone who hasn’t grown up in the area he gets Gloucester perfectly.
“You still need that kind of team talk, and hopefully that will always be part of the game.
“You’re left in no doubt that there’s something special here, and then you’re ready to fight for every inch of it.
“These derby games are always massively tight and competitive.
“Neither side is going to walk home.
“And you need to keep your head, because it’s the little things that change the game.
“In that build-up I’ll probably be stood taking it all in, it’s great. I have my own preparations, but when you have that huddle before we go out, some of the senior boys will say their peace.
“Just looking round the circle then, you can see the desire in the boys’ eyes.
“You can feel the power that some players bring to the team, and the emotion is huge.
“That’s why we play rugby, everyone loves games like this, and we can’t wait.”