At the half way point of the season things are looking very positive. In pre-season we introduced a new playing framework and the lads have embraced it and worked incredibly hard to learn it ready for the start of the season. We also have scored more points than anyone else in the league, and at one point we had conceded the least amount points compared to every other team in the Norther Division. This has been achieved by the commitment from the players with availability and training since the season started. We have managed to keep consistency in selection, and this has added value to the winning formula.
In terms of league rugby, there have been two personal highlights, an away win against Hemsworth and the home win against Leeds Modernians. Hemsworth were a physical side and they made us work hard for the win in tough conditions away from home. We showed great resilience and mindset in that performance, and the lads worked hard for the full 80 minutes and achieved a fair result. The game against Leeds Mods was a great win against local rivals, and we demonstrated that we can compete up front as well as in the backs, which is a great assist moving into the winter period. The biggest disappointment was the game away against Leeds Medics and Dentists. We underestimated them, arrived with the wrong mindset and they made us suffer because of it. Hopefully that won’t happen again this season.
It was great to get the RFU National Vase competition underway with a home fixture against Wallsend. They turned up in great spirts and caught us on a day when everything clicked. After losing to Northallerton the week before the lads responded accordingly with a 126-0 win, the biggest in the Club’s history.
Looking forward to the second half of the season, the coaching staff and the players share the same vision of gaining promotion to Yorkshire 2. We start the second half of the season with a tough run of fixtures - Wensleydale (H), Aireborough (A), Hemsworth (H), Northallerton, (A), Sheffield Medics (H)- and we need to be on form to get wins in these fixtures. If we can start the second half of the season in a similar way to the first half, then we will be in a strong position for promotion come the end of the season. The lads know how hard they are going to have to work and we are under no illusions how hard it will be. Mindset and resilience have to continue to be our buzz words all season and, if we get this right, we should have a very promising season which will hopefully finish with trip to Twickenham!