Mighty Quin Joe Trayfoot is aiming for the top
Joe Trayfoot might have been nominated for the LV= breakthrough player award, but the Harlequins back-row insisted training alongside the current England captain means his ambitions are far loftier still.
The 22-year-old headed into the current campaign knowing that his opportunities would be few and far between, with Chris Robshaw, Maurie Fa’asavalu, Will Skinner and Luke Wallace all at the club.
But, despite the competition, Trayfoot has still managed to get game time both domestically and in the Heineken Cup – making his European debut with a 14-minute appearance against Zebre in December.
But it is in the LV= Cup where his talents have really been displayed, starting all four of Harlequins’ games as they booked themselves a semi-final clash with Bath this Saturday.
His performances have led to a nomination for the breakthrough player award, won last year by Gloucester’s Jonny May, but Trayfoot has no intention of slowing down any time soon.
He said: “It is a real honour to be nominated for the award as it is a big deal for young players like myself.
“Jonny May won it last year and he has gone on to do amazing for Gloucester this season and it shows the competition, not just the award, is a great platform for young players.
“Other guys in previous years have won the award and gone on and really pushed forward so, hopefully, I can do the same.
“It has been great playing in the Aviva Premiership and the Heineken Cup this season and I knew that, with guys like Chris in the team, I would have to take my opportunities.
“I have been happy with what I have done. Chris is a really good bloke and a really good captain and he is easy to talk to about playing in this position.
“He was in my position five years ago, having come through the academy, and, hopefully, in four or five years I can be at his level too.”
Since claiming the Aviva Premiership title last season, their first-ever top flight league success, a winning mentality has arisen at Harlequins and Trayfoot is eager to get in on the action.
He said: “At Harlequins, we have the squad to win every game regardless of whether it is in the Premiership, Heineken Cup or LV= Cup and we all want to do that. We want to beat Bath and lift the LV= Cup to get the first piece of silverware for the club this season so we can push on and win more.”
To vote for your LV= breakthrough player and for LV= Cup tickets and information go to www.lv.com/rugby.