The club cannot confirm, yet we cannot deny the folklore of his appointment to the club but one version of the story starts in a small fish and chip shop in Clevedon. Clifton Rugby’s Director of Rugby, Darren Lloyd was swinging by this particular fish and chip shop on his way home. It was here he encountered the thick set frame of Alex Giltrow towering over him; who in the one hand was clutching a tray of chips and the other a half eaten battered sausage. Conversations soon turned to rugby and Alex's journey started after being invited along to the Clifton Rugby's preseason training.
It was clear from his first season at Station Road that Alex was going to be a formidable player for Clifton. Further strengthening an already robust front row, he soon became a key character amongst his peers and as a result for his first season efforts was awarded Player’s Player at the end of season dinner. He was also called upon by Bristol Rugby to represent them in A league fixtures throughout the year including playing away to rivals Bath Rugby.
Success continued into the following 2016-2017 season, the name Alex Giltrow soon became a regular sight within the starting line up. Appearing 24 times and as a tighthead prop he managed to score an impressive 6 tries in National League Two South. He later was awarded by Clifton Rugby management the Coach’s Player of the season title. Subsequently it is no surprise that the Clifton Sausage Man of the Match award regularly found its way to Alex for his efforts on the field. However rumour has it he visits that same Clevedon fish and chip shop every Saturday after rugby.
His success at Clifton is just the tip of an iceberg to what has been an incredible year for the 25 year old. Alex has been studying building services engineering at the University of West England (UWE) and appeared a number of occasions for the student side this season, this included the long anticipated varsity match between the University of Bristol. He was then nominated by Simon Weaver of UWE to the England Students committee and was invited to trial for selection. Success followed and Alex was awarded his England jersey as part of the England Students XV that faced their french counterparts.
Its not over yet…
In May Alex went on to appear in the Bill Beaumont County Championships for Somerset alongside seven other Clifton Rugby players. The side played a three game series of which Alex appeared 220 minutes out of a possible 240 minutes of rugby. He even was crowned the side’s top try scorer managing to cross the line three times during the whole campaign. Not so bad for a tighthead prop!
Subsequently his success at Clifton, England Students and Somerset hadn’t been ignored. The county coaches nominated Alex to England Counties Head Coach, James Shanahan, who recognised his achievements and abilities. Shanahan has gone on to selected Alex to represent England Counties for their tour matches in the Basque Country and against the full Spanish XV in Madrid this June. This makes Alex the only National 2 South player to feature in the England County's squad and this is testament to his determination and attitude as a player.
Alex Giltrow is a credit to his University, Somerset, England Rugby and to our club. His ability on the field is impressive to watch. However it is his character off the field that is something we would like to emulate throughout our club ethos. Only recently he took the time out from preparing for Spain, and alongside some other Clifton Rugby players unselfishly gave plenty of muscle to dig over flower beds situated in Clifton Village in support of Clifton Village in Bloom project.
Congratulations Alex on your achievements over the past two years and may your success continue into the 2017-2018 season with Clifton Rugby.
Now...Anyone for a trip to the chippy?
Updated 17:43 - 20 Jun 2017 by Wyn Tingley