Working Through Corona with Sammy Watts

Posted: Wednesday 20th May 2020 - 2:42 PM

Sammy, no relation to Liam Watts, has been with Castleford Tigers Women since Day One. However, just like the rest of the rugby league community, her sporting aspirations have had to take a back seat during the ongoing pandemic.

Instead, the player has been kept busy by working for one of the UK’s largest supermarkets, Morrisons.

Watts is currently part of the social media team for the company however, due to the huge demand on supermarkets, the player has had to remain flexible and work in different areas of the business.

She said: “At the start we all just got sent to the store to work there for a couple of weeks during the panic buying phase. The stores at that time were busier than Christmas! Then I got called back into the office because we had a backlog of 18,000 customer emails all trying to get a delivery online.

“I’m back full time on social media now but when I’m not so busy I’m picking up doorstep delivery calls as there’s got to be 150 people on the phoneline at one time.”

Just like majority of the workforce, Watts is working from home for the majority of time. She adds: “We’re all working remotely as we’re not allowed too many people in the office. On Tuesday’s I go in and film some recipes that we put on social media.

“That’s all that we’re really posting about at this moment: things to do at home, nice recipes and then anything coronavirus related like the speedy shopper. Normal business is usually doing social media posts about offers that we’re putting online.”

When the player does take the odd trip to the office, there are precautions in place to try and limit the spread of the virus. “You can wear a mask if you want,” says Watts. “There are markers all over the floors now. From Monday we have thermal screening now. If anyone flags up with a high temperature then you’ve got to have your temperature actually taken.”

While some across the country have enjoyed working from home, Watts admits that it’s not the same as the office environment. She said: “It’s pretty difficult to be fair because normally if you need a bit of help or have to ask a question, you could just pop over to a desk and ask. But because we’re working form home, you’ve now got to send them a text or an email and wait an hour to get an answer on a simple task.”

Despite working, Watts still finds the time to keep up with the training plans set by the Castleford Tigers Women’s coaching team.

“I’m keeping up with training,” adds Watts. “We’re doing all the runs set by the coaches and we’ve got the zoom sessions as well.

“The coaches are putting on a couple of sessions on each week which I manage to do. Just popping out onto the field is good, it gives you something to look forward to, getting out of the house. We’ve also got Yoga on Wednesdays.”

While training alone is something that’s necessary, it’s not something that comes easy to players who compete in team sports such as rugby league. For instance, Watts does admit that the lack of a competition factor at training is an issue.

She said: “It’s hard to push yourself to your limits because there’s no one else to compete against. I find it better when I’m competing against someone because you always want to win. You don’t know whether you’re doing it fast enough or pushing too hard. It will be nice when we can start training in small groups.”

It is still unclear when exactly the 2020 campaign will get underway however, we will update fans via our social media channels when there is more information. 

Castleford Tigers Women would like to give a big shoutout to all the main shirt sponsors: Hillside Childcare, GMB Union, Tracked Spider Solutions, Yorkshire Flight Simulator, Anthony Higgins Transport, Castle Commercial Cleaning Limited, B&J Goulding, Marra Falcons, Pizza Prima, SB Paving, D&M Family Butchers and the Wakefield Council.

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