Drybrook RFC prepares for life in South West 1
Following two successive promotions Drybrook RFC are ready to hit the ground running in South West 1 – their highest ever level since leagues began.
They will have the same coaching staff in Frazer McArdell and Tim Stevenson, both with Hartpury College and pedigree rugby backgrounds, who have been the driving force in transforming fortunes at the club in recent years.
This season will see a new captain with centre Ben Large (21) taking over from fellow centre Simon Rugman. Large has been a regular in the county age group set ups and has featured in the county under 20’s team for the last 2 seasons.
Coaches Frazer McArdell and Tim Stevenson and new club captain Ben Large
A product of Drybrook’s highly successful youth section, Large is just one of a number of young players to break through in recent times.
Drybrook have been very successful in developing players for higher grade rugby with Andrew Bulumakau, Andy Chesters and Rik Cottrell all making the step up to National league clubs.
Drybrook are not going into this league to make up the numbers and genuinely believe they are building a squad that will compete with the best. The focus is very much on building a large squad so anyone thinking of making the step up to this level is urged to give it a go.
This season Drybrook will also be running a Colts XV in the Gloucestershire league building on the success of last year’s under 17’s squad and a
number of those players look set to feature in the senior set up at some stage.
Recruitment has gone well and Drybrook have managed to maintain strong links with higher based teams for development.
Gloucester’s Henry Trinder, fresh from England’s tour to New Zealand, will be helping with some skills sessions and the Kingsholm club are also supplying a member of their elite squad to assist with scrum training.
Pre-season training begins at the Mannings on Tuesday 15th July (6.30 – 8pm) and will continue every Tuesday and Thursday night thereafter.
New players of all abilities are welcome, the club’s 2nd and 3rd XV’s will compete in the Gloucestershire Reserve league structure, and a Veterans XV will play once a month.
The pre-season programme has been arranged as follows:
Saturday 16th August
Trimsarin (home) – 3pm kick off
Thursday 21st August
Hartpury College 2/3’s (away) – 7pm kick off
Friday 29th August
Colchester (home) – 7pm kick off
Off the field things have also gone well and the new gym facility is set to open in readiness for pre-season training. Housed above the changing room complex, this £50,000 development is the latest improvement scheme to benefit the players.