Highlanders Hookers Rooted In Rural Life Outside Of Rugby

Highlanders Hookers Rooted In Rural Life Outside Of Rugby

Currently competing for the number two jersey for the Super Rugby's Southern-most team, Highlanders' rugby players Henry Bell and Jack Taylor join Dom George to talk about their passion for farming and sustainable land management alongside their blossoming professional rugby careers. 

The conversation kicks off with a casual chat about the players' rugby experiences and the current season, with Bell reminiscing about his leadership role at John McGlashan College and Taylor sharing his rapid rise from Southland rookie to a sensation in Super Rugby. 

The conversation also touches on the Highlanders' recent hard-fought victory over the Western Force, highlighting the importance of low-scoring wins. Looking ahead, they express excitement for the upcoming first-ever Super Rugby match in Tonga, expected to be a celebration of cultural pride and sporting excellence. 

Bell and Taylor then shift gears to discuss their quieter, but equally passionate, pursuits outside of rugby. Bell has recently embarked on his journey as a homeowner, while both are engaged in academic studies with Bell completing a degree in environmental science and management, and Taylor, aka Noddy, studying agribusiness with a focus on farm management. 

Their discussions reveal a commitment to integrating their academic knowledge with the future of sustainable farming. As they delve into personal stories, the pair shares tales of hunting expeditions, and how the camaraderie within the team extends to sharing the spoils, with Taylor winning a mix of venison and salamis in a team raffle. 

They also reflect on the competitive nature of their sibling relationships, with Taylor discussing the various sports his siblings are involved in, and Bell recounting friendly rivalries with his brother. 

In a poignant segment of the conversation, Bell and Taylor pay homage to rugby legends like Dane Coles and Josh Hohneck, acknowledging their profound influence on the next generation of players. 

"Coles's fast and mobile playing style has been inspirational," one of them remarks, while Hohneck is remembered as a "hard man and a good fellow" both on and off the field. 

The support from the Highlanders region is highlighted as a vital force that propels athletes like Bell and Taylor to greatness. 

Through every pass, tackle, and try, the stories of Henry Bell and Jack Taylor offer an intimate look at the rich tapestry of experiences that shape rugby players beyond the sport they love.

Listen to the full chat between Henry Bell, Jack Taylor and Dominic George above.

To check out more episodes listen to the REX Podcast anytime on your favourite streaming platforms including Spotify, Apple Music and Rova.

Visit the Rural Exchange Facebook or Instagram page for more information and regular updates from the REX team.