By Sam Perkins, Blackheath player and Rugby World reader

Four weeks into training and I already have to use all 9 fingers and 10 toes to count the amount of injuries I have suffered. Don’t worry, the missing finger was one of the injuries, lets just say collapsing the scrum – not a good idea, putting your hand in the line of fire – even worse idea.

 I woke up this morning with chronic back ache, a throbbing thigh muscle (accompanied with an attractive limp) and a swollen shoulder that makes me look like He-Man, just without the good looks and the sword. Being a university student, I then have to suffer all these ‘tough man’ injuries, say to myself in the morning ‘MAN UP!’ (a term frequently used in the fourths side when we aren’t pulling our weight) and go into lectures with a smile on my face and walking stick in hand.

 Although I have all these aches and pains, body parts in irregular places and a side order of arthritis, I wouldn’t change it for the world. Rugby is a rough sport, but one that I love to play, and getting hurt just means its working. I’m the real thing, a rugby player.