ALBION summer signing Nile Dacres will be following in his father’s footsteps by trying to make a name for himself in Plymouth sport.
The 23-year-old forward has joined Albion from Moseley after previously playing for fellow Midlands clubs Worcester and Stourbridge.
But what people probably don’t know is that his father, Kevin, played for the Plymouth Raiders in the 1980s.
“My dad used to play basketball and played in Plymouth for a little while,” revealed Dacres. “He told me a little about the area before I came down.”
Dacres is excited about his 200-mile move south. Apart from a few weeks on loan at Rotherham, he has never lived outside the Midlands.
“I went through the youth system at Worcester and went to college there,” he said. “I did a couple of years at the Worcester Academy and had a couple of loans spell at Stourbridge and Rotherham for a little while.
“When I came out of the academy I went to Stourbridge again, which was local, and then spent last season with Moseley.
“So this is the first real time I have been based outside the Midlands, but it is quite exciting.
“It was a pretty easy decision to make (joining Albion). The only thing I had to get my head around was moving.
“But I am already starting to settle in and getting to know the lads.”
Albion reported back for pre-season duty at the start of this week, but Dacres wanted to get a feel for the city before meeting up with his new team-mates.
“I initially came down last week just to give myself a bit of time to find my feet and settle into the area,” he said.
One of the main things that attracted Dacres to Albion was the club’s fan base.
“I have been down here a couple of times to play,” he said. “The last time was around January time with Moseley.
“That week there was a lot going on around the club (Albion had announced they were facing administration) but there was a lot of support here. It was packed out and there was a great atmosphere.”
Dacres is hoping to experience the same type of atmosphere at all the club’s home games in 2015/16, but first he has to make sure he secures himself a place in Graham Dawe’s new-look team.
“I am just trying to focus on training hard through pre-season and then I’ll think about trying to get into the team for the start of the season,” he said.
“The challenge for me is to try and cement a place in the side.
“I just have to see what I can bring to the team and try and help out the best I can.”
Dacres can play in the second-row or back-row. When asked which he felt was his best position, he said: “Personally, I would say back-row. I have probably spent more time on paper playing in the second-row, just because of make-ups of teams, but I think back-row as I like to get my hands on the ball and run with it.
“However, I will leave that decision for Graham. It’s where he thinks I fit into the squad best.
“Whatever is best for the team, I will crack on and do my job.”
Another interesting fact about Dacres is that his first senior competitive game of rugby came against Albion – and he scored a try.
“It was a B&I Cup game and I came off the bench for Worcester. That must have been four years ago. Hopefully, I can do that for Plymouth now – get a few tries and stretch my legs a bit.”
OTHER THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT NILE DACRES
- He did not take up rugby until the age of 13
- He used to play the cello as a youngster and reached grade five.
- He confesses he can play the guitar ‘a bit’.
- He likes to chill out by playing Xbox
- And his best athletics events were 400m and high jump