Fylde’s latest recruit is backrower Ben O’Ryan. Ben, 22, grew up in Blackburn and played at Blackburn RUFC from the age of seven to sixteen. He progressed to Myerscough College’s AASE programme whilst earning representative honours with both Lancashire U’18s and Irish Exiles U’18s. He pays particular tribute to his father and the coaches at Blackburn for his progress, and adds in the Myerscough coaches, including Warren Spragg, as helping his development along the way.

His performances for the Exiles brought him to the attention of Ulster and he was invited to play in Northern Ireland for Ulster’s U’19s and U’20s. He joined Ballymena and was with the club for three seasons. He also had a season in Australia with the GPS club in the Queensland Premier Division.

Ben, 6’1” and 100kg, is comfortable in both the open and blind side wing forward positions. “They are very different roles but I like the test of having to be adaptable” he said. “I think that my strengths are in working hard in defence and linking with the back line in attack.”

“I’m really excited to be joining Fylde. The Club has a massive reputation in the North West and beyond. I really hope that I can learn as much as possible and contribute to that history and achievement. I’ve enjoyed the initial weeks of pre-season training. It’s been tough but fun at the same time.”

Away from rugby, Ben is working and studying as an apprentice bricklayer.