Ben Morgan has launched a successful scaffolding business knowing from personal experience that his rugby career could be snatched away in an instant.
Morgan is in contention to start England’s autumn opener against South Africa on Saturday with an injury crisis at number eight offering the chance to win his first cap since the 2015 World Cup.
Injury has repeatedly stalked the powerful back row, but non were as damaging as the broken leg sustained the same year England endured a harrowing group exit from the tournament they were hosting.
Confronted by the need to generate revenue outside of rugby to provide for his family he set-up No8 Scaffolding, which is now operating “flat out” and is in the process of expanding.
“When you’re in that rugby bubble you feel invincible and that you’ll always be involved, but then you have a realisation when something bad happens,” Morgan said.
“When I broke my leg in 2015, I was like ‘this could all just go’. I have got my family to support and my son was born in 2015. I thought I have got to look after my family.
“I started to invest in certain things – I have got some property, set up a scaffolding company and I also have got property development interests.”
With Billy Vunipola, Nathan Hughes and Sam Simmonds injured, Morgan could soon ensure the harrowing World Cup defeat by Australia is not his final outing in an England jersey.
“The big thing for me is that I am a completely different person now to then. I have got a family, I have got two children. I have started a business,” Morgan said.
“When I was playing before, I was playing for my own aspirations and individual goals whereas now my goals and reason and drive is playing for my family and my kids.
“Having a deeper meaning is definitely a game changer. I am a lot more relaxed. You can at times put a lot of pressure on yourself and previously it was a pressure to be involved.
“Don’t get me wrong I have always got that desire to be here but I’ve made that peace that if I wasn’t then I was very proud of what I had achieved.”
England name their squad to face South Africa on Thursday morning with Morgan expected to pack down in a back row also featuring Tom Curry and Michael Rhodes.