Awards ga­lore at end of a sea­son to remember

Southport Visiter - - Visiter Life - BY JAMES COOK

THE 2017-18 sea­son con­cluded with Mini/Ju­nior awards and not for­get­ting the fa­mous in­ter club ‘Kenny Cup’ won by the Club Cap­tain XV in a thrilling 59-52 game - free flow­ing rugby at is best!

As ever the sea­son brought its chal­lenges but the club faced up to them, learn­ing and get­ting bet­ter in tune with the true char­ac­ter now em­bod­ied within its DNA. A big thank you to all in­volved.

Pres­i­dent, Gra­ham El­lis summed it up. He said: “Yet an­other nine month roller coaster on and off the pitch but ul­ti­mately again ooz­ing a zest and pos­i­tiv­ity which we will build on and take into next sea­son stronger and more de­ter­mined through­out. Can’t wait!’’

The Se­nior teams all ac­quit­ted them­selves well and achieved po­si­tions and points in their re­spec­tive leagues as fol­lows:

1st XV - 9th (50 points); 2nd XV - 8th (47 points); 3rd XV - 5th (38 points); Ladies - 5th (33 points); Colts –League B Sept-Nov 1st place (29 points) pro­moted to League A Nov-Feb 6th place (11 points). Three men’s First team play­ers donned the Lan­cashire Royal shirt and the team looks for­ward to again play­ing at Level 7 although the struc­ture of the leagues is un­der re­view. This may well mean a new set of fixtures in­clud­ing clubs from Cum­bria to make life noth­ing if not in­ter­est­ing. It was a fan­tas­tic first year for the Ladies in Cham­pi­onship North 2, fin­ish­ing off in the top half of the ta­ble and with five play­ers in the Lan­cashire Se­nior Squads and two with St He­lens Rugby League. The sea­son cul­mi­nated in Wa t e r l o o Road host­ing the Lanca- shire Ladies v East Mid­lands Gill Burns Trophy county match.

The Colts com­peted at the high­est level of rugby in the North of Eng­land, against clubs such as Sale, Lymm and Ch­ester.

And eight Lan­cashire rep­re­sen­ta­tives within their ranks too!

Like­wise, some great per­for­mances in the Mi­nis & Ju­niors in­clud­ing the un­der 15s be­ing joint win­ners of the Lan­cashire Bowl, a hugely suc­cess­ful Bank Hol­i­day Rugby Fes­ti­val at­tract­ing over 60 teams and the Awards cer­e­mony.

Di­rec­tor of Rugby Mike Dale is rightly proud. he said: “Well the sea­son is over, it has brought its chal­lenges with re­gards to play­ers how­ever we have still got three teams play­ing in se­nior rugby.

“A big thank you to all of the coach­ing, se­lec­tion, cap­tains and all in­volved with se­nior rugby.

We have had 21 Ju­nior/Se­nior Colts tran­si­tion­ing in to the se­nior squads mak­ing a marked im­pres­sion in all three teams.”

Men’s Pre-Sea­son train­ing starts on June 28 with play­ers meet­ing a week be­fore for all (Colts & Se­niors) pos­si­bly with a BBQ.

Com­mence­ment of Mon­day night gym strength and con­di­tion­ing ses­sions are be­ing drawn up with home friendlies against teams from Shot­ton Steel and Wens­ley­dale and at Water­loo and Wi­gan.

All teams next sea­son will be re­splen­dent in the new shirts based on the tra­di­tional red black & am­ber hoops with head­line spon­sors EFT Group on the front.

Chair­man of South­port RFC, Steve Olive con­cludes: “Ev­ery sea­son we strive to im­prove on the pitch and off it. We pride our­selves on be­ing a ‘proper com­mu­nity club’.

“We work hard to de­velop our play­ers and give them the op­por­tu­nity to play to their po­ten­tial.

“We work hard to build great rela- tion­ships in the com­mu­nity, with o u r neigh­bou r s, with lo­cal schools, col­leges and lo­cal busi­nesses.

“We have pros­pered this year as a re­sult of the great sup­port we have in the Com­mu­nity and the un­stint­ing sup­port of our vol­un­teers.

“The foun­da­tions are strong. We can look for­ward to next year with well­founded op­ti­mism, thanks to all who make it hap­pen at Water­loo Road.

“We can’t wait to see ev­ery­one again for the 2018-19 sea­son!”

South­port RFC wishes ev­ery­one a rest­ful and well de­served off sea­son, short as it is, with ev­ery­one rar­ing to go again in Septem­ber.

Oh and care of ‘ never mind the qual­ity...’ - Club Cap­tain Ja­son Keat­ing new club blaz­ers and waist coats to savour too! In fact there is an im­me­di­ate op­por­tu­nity to don the new at­tire at the Club’s An­nual Sum­mer Ball tak­ing place at the Flo­ral Hall on June 23, this year’s theme be­ing the Great Gatsby. South­port RFC is look­ing for a Player Coach/s to be part of and share in the club’s ex­cit­ing fu­ture on and off the pitch. If you are in­ter­ested then please pass your CV in con­fi­dence di­rect to Head Coach Neil Ryan via nryan1878@gmail.com. Clos­ing date for ap­pli­catants is May 27 with a view to hit­ting the ground run­ning dur­ing the close sea­son. This is an ideal op­por­tu­nity for am­bi­tious ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers, who have played at level 6 or higher and are now look­ing to progress into coach­ing while con­tin­u­ing to play at a good com­pet­i­tive stan­dard. There will be ex­cel­lent sup­port from the coach­ing and man­age­ment team to pro­vide as­sis­tance. This will ideally en­tail a pro-ac­tive role on the pitch bring­ing on the hugely tal­ented and am­bi­tious young play­ers work­ing with an equally am­bi­tious head coach and team off it. With a prodi­gious Colts set up al­lied with sig­nif­i­cant con­nec­tions in place and evolv­ing with lo­cal ed­u­ca­tion, busi­ness and in­ter­na­tional es­tab­lish­ments the club is keen to in­vest in its fu­ture and to de­velop these play­ers and teams to fur­ther the clubs stand­ing within the game. This is a unique and fan­tas­tic op­por­tu­nity.

Im­ages by An­gus Mathe­son

Some of the South­port RFC Mi­nis and Ju­niors proudly show­ing off their tro­phies and medals

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