RUGBY UNION: Borough are strengthening on and off the pitch

Borough player of the year Stuart Day receives his trophy from club vice-chairman Archie Bennett.
Borough player of the year Stuart Day receives his trophy from club vice-chairman Archie Bennett.
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Peterborough Rugby Club promises to be better on and off the pitch next season.

That’s the message coming from Second Drove, Fengate, as preparations get under way for the new campaign.

On the pitch the club have started pre-season training, and if the turnout during the first week is anything to go by then the number of senior players turning out each week is going to be extremely healthy.

Nearly 50 players of all abilities took part in the first session, combining fitness and game skills.

And with several senior players still on holiday, that number is bound to swell over the coming weeks.

Head coach Lee Adamson conducted the session with help from assistants Kevin Roe and John Sismey, and they were joined for the first time by forwards coach Nico Steenkamp and Academy coach Adrian Swindles.

Adamson said: “I was very pleased with the initial turnout and know the number will grow. We had several new players in attendance and we are confident of adding to the squad over the next few weeks.

“We have been working hard in the close season to attract quality players to Fengate and will soon be in a position to announce who is joining us to strengthen what is a great group of young players who are hungry for success.

“It’s about controlled recruitment and improvement, and making sure we provide players with an enjoyable experience on and off the pitch.

“With a little more strength in depth in our senior playing members I am convinced we can improve all our teams’ performances this season.

“Our Academy section is also strong and I expect a number of their players to push for first team places during the season.”

The club are also improving their facilities during the summer months.

Club sponsors Apex Contracting are busy coverting a large area of wasteland into another training area to cope with increased demand from the mini and junior sections, and there will also be a new seating area around the first team pitch and a new teaching and coaching classroom next to the clubhouse.

Vice-chairman Archie Bennett said: “All these areas of improvement will help us attract more people to enjoy what will be one of the best sports facilities in the East Midlands.

“They are all being carried out by volunteers to whom we are very grateful.”

At the club’s presentation evening, prop Stuart Day picked up both the Players’ Player of the Year and the Coaches’ Player of the Year awards with the Young Player of the Year prize going to Tom Downer. The ladies awards went to Jen Sothmann and Melanie Fulcher.

The club also made a special presentation to Paul Crooks in honour of his work and dedication over the past 21 years. He was made an honorary life member of the club.

At the club’s annual meeting all last year’s principal officers were re-elected with Hugh Burnham elected as club captain. John Thompson continues as first team skipper.

Officers: President - Derek Watkins; Chairman - Dick Clark; Vice-chairman - Archie Bennett; Secretary - Ian Hamilton; Treasurer - Margery Beuttell; Mini/Junior Chairman - Matt Throne.