Insider Sport’s Matchday Programme offers a personal look at what sporting moments and figures have inspired industry stakeholders. Through candid reflections, the programme delves into the stories behind the inspirations that have shaped their perspectives and fuelled their passion for sports.

In this edition, William Woodhams, CEO of Fitzdares, shares his admiration for Jonny Wilkinson, who stands out not only as a remarkable rugby player but also as a model of consistency and reliability. Woodhams recalls Wilkinson’s impeccable performances and his ability to excel in a team filled with big personalities. 

William Woodhams, CEO of Fitzdares

Which athlete do you think demonstrated the best winning mentality throughout their career?

It’s somewhere between Steve Redgrave and Tony McCoy – both are absolute machines that did not let anything get between them and the winning post.

Who was your childhood sports hero and why? Which of their sporting achievements had the biggest impact on you?

Not really my childhood, but no sports hero has made me happier or prouder than Jonny Wilkinson. I cannot recall him making a mistake in the hours and hours I watched him, and in a team full of huge personalities his talent shone through. I sort of knew he would personally win the World Cup for England and he did in spectacular style.

What sports team do you follow the closest? Is this a family team or local side etc, and what has been the biggest moment in your history of supporting this club?

I’m terrible, I supported Chelsea as a kid, that waned after Mathew Harding died, I picked up QPR as my local team (Loftus road is a joy of a place – sort of) and I now follow Fulham as we sponsor them. But really it’s Gloucester Rugby – a team that has everything a fan could need and the best ground in the world.

Is there a team manager from any sport, whether that be football, rugby, NFL, NBA etc, who you think demonstrated the best leadership qualities?

He wasn’t the manager, but Michael Jordan is the greatest leader of them all. His brain was well ahead of everyone else’s and he is also a huge punter, so I love him.

What sports tournament do you think consistently provides the biggest thrills? Which moment from this league stood out to you the most in recent memory?

Sorry to keep going on about Rugby, but this year’s Six Nations just kept on delivering and delivering. It has a very special rhythm and always has something up its sleeve to surprise you. Then it’s the Masters, which we host a fantasy game on – which makes it double the excitement.

If you could travel back in time to any historic sporting moment to watch it then and now, which would it be and why?

The Lions tour of South Africa, followed by 1966. Crazy it’s in that order, but that’s the truth.

If you could go out for dinner with any sporting figure, current or historical, who would it be and what would you want to learn from them?

Bobby Moore, John Daly and Paul Gascoigne.

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