Someday, when all goes well, Lewis Ludlow will be on duty in Gloucester crowd control with a large dog as company. But for the time being his priority remains to arouse public enthusiasm in the city.
The West Country club captain will be hoping to do it again on Saturday when he and his teammates will link the horns with Harlequins at Twickenham, knowing they have to take something from the game to keep Premiership playoff hopes alive.
Ludlow will lead the guest charge with typical energy and ferocity in the grand arena where the flanking captain was captain of England on his test debut last summer.
Gloucester Captain Lewis Ludlow and his teammates will join the Harlequins horns on Saturday
At 27, he has many years ahead of him to embellish his growing reputation as a modern folk hero in and around Kingsholm, where rugby is a major passion. But Ludlow is already preparing to serve his community in a different role.
“After rugby I plan to become a cop,” Sportsmail said. – I’m becoming Special Police Constable in Gloucestershire. I had meetings with the deputy police chief to find out how the shift was going. I feel it is very similar to the rugby team in the police force.
– I was with dog handlers and I was doing traffic related stuff. I have tried to gather as much experience as possible before the time comes for a flashy new number 7 that is much better than me. I can hop on a ship and become a cop quickly!
The flanker will lead the guest charge into Twickenham with typical energy and ferocity
“The idea of being in the police, in a team environment, local work, serving the city; it really speaks. I just have to hope my body can hold on. I don’t think you can be in the police if your body is completely disfigured!
“I want to be a dog handler. I have three dogs myself. I have a German Shepherd, a Hussite and a Rottweiler. I’ve always had big dogs. Our neighbor next door was a dog trainer, so I went out and exercised. I was bitten by dogs. They are chasing you and you have to reach out. You hear a dog approaching and before you know it, you’re on the ground with his hand in his mouth standing over you. I was just thinking, “This is cool. I can do it”.
Given his status as a sporting figurehead in the area, Ludlow has already been warned that he may not be allowed to participate in certain frontline duties for fear of inadvertently starting a riot.
Gloucester needs to get something out of the game to keep hopes for a Premiership playoff
“One of the biggest things promotions do is help out Friday and Saturday nights with downtown crowd control,” he added. The commandant said, ‘You can’t do this. We are not insured and if something happens you will cause more problems because of who you are. A larger crowd will gather. ” It would be, “Look, look, I’m under arrest by Lewis.”
Ludlow is a mobile, active character. He and his wife run a small farm near Stroud – “I have some time for a tractor, which is a good way to turn off.” He also helps his father, a mechanic, repair classic cars, while also finding time for further initial training for the police. But the main emphasis is on his daily work. He is honored with the Gloucester captain and hopes to make a difference as the club continues its resurgence process under the leadership of young rugby director George Skivington.
“I try to set an example; working as hard as I can, ”Ludlow said. “I will not be beaten by anyone who is more athletic than me, and I will go into every hole that I have to go into at this club. If I can motivate other people to do it and do it too, that’s great.
The 27-year-old striker is also a Special Police Constable in Gloucestershire
– I don’t see myself ever gone. Every day I still think that I would not be a professional rugby player if it were not for Gloucester, so I will do my best to repay the club. If that means going to war for as many years as possible, I will.
“There will come a time when a young boy will come and be a better seven than me, but I still wouldn’t want to leave – I’d just like to adapt and remain part of the team and club. Hopefully it will be a few more years before that happens!
Ludlow loves his role and the task of representing an area that craves success in rugby. But he is humble enough to be uncomfortable with some of the responsibilities that come with a captain.
“We had to do a photo shoot for (league sponsors) Gallagher and the trophy was there,” he said. “I felt a little strange taking photos with a mug. I didn’t want to pick it up. I felt a little awkward. We had to stand next to it, but all I thought was, “I’ll do it if I win.” It just didn’t fit.
The 27-year-old has firmly established himself as a modern folk hero in Kingsholm
“But of course there is a soft voice in your head that tells you that if you win something, you will win the trophy. It’s hype to think about. At the end of the day we all want to win, and as a captain you have the advantage of being the one to pick it up.
Of course, he has ambitions for England, as do all the other countless rivals trying to get Eddie Jones’s attention. But Ludlow is determined to maintain a sense of perspective. He gives body and soul to his club’s cause and hopes to lead to more without letting himself be consumed by the thirst for higher honors.
He was called up to attend a training camp during the Six Nations – as a reminder that he is on Red Rose’s radar – said, “It’s good to feel in the squad, but there’s such a big pool player to choose from, so you can’t sulk if you don’t you will be chosen.
“This is something I have tried to convey to everyone who is there or nearby:“ Don’t worry about it. If that happens, it will happen. Don’t let this become the end of your life and career. You want it, work your best to get it, don’t turn any stone to get it, but if it doesn’t, it’s out of your control. “
He could have been talking about the equation for Gloucester on Saturday. Whatever he and his teammates do, the fight for the last playoff spot is beyond their control as Northampton is currently in fourth place. But Ludlow will not leave any stone unturned, and if the people around him follow suit again, Skivington’s team may find a way to stay in the title fight.