Billy the kidder
If you could bottle up passion and charisma and throw in a little bit of larrikin you would have a winning potion that would be the envy of any country rugby league team. The Armidale Rams might not have a potion, but they do have Billy Hyde who represents everything that the Rams have worked so hard to establish in their club.
Long-time club member Tim Polson sums it up beautifully.
â€œBilly optimises what country rugby league is all about. He is a larrikin who loves playing the game for not just success, but more importantly, to be a part of a team and making mates.
â€œThere is a side that I have been fortunate enough to witness that many others may not see underneath the larrikin.
â€œBilly displays integrity, commitment and, most importantly, loyalty, traits that these days are becoming harder to find.
â€œToo many players these days want everything without being prepared to give anything, but Billy is different and this is why Billy is one of the most loved players at our club.
â€œThese traits that he displays have filtered through the club, making us more competitive this year.â€
Billy started playing Rugby League at school when he was 15 and later went on to play for the Rams in the Under 18s side in 2007.
â€œIt actually took some convincing from me to get him to play,â€ said Tim.
â€œThat year we were runners-up, overachieving with an inexperienced and small forward pack, with Billy playing front row. Since that year, Billy has never looked back.â€
He is also a member of the Rams committee and has coached the ladies OZ Tag team and is currently playing in the Rams first grade side.
â€œBilly is the club clown, always chirpy and quick witted at training and he is the bloke that can be heard over the top of everyone else,â€ said Tim.
Billy is really enjoying his football at the moment for the Rams and loves the atmosphere that has developed within the club.
â€œI like to have a joke with the boys but I take my footy pretty seriously,â€ said Billy.
â€œI have played pretty much everywhere in the forward pack, but my favourite position is lock.
â€œI am really enjoying my footy at the moment and everyone wants to play as a team, itâ€™s good to be amongst a great bunch of blokes.â€
This Saturday, June 30, the Armidale Rams take on Tenterfield at Rugby League Park, with games starting at 11am, with ladies Oz Tag. The first grade game will kick off at 3pm.
Story: Jo Harrison