Team of the Year award boost for Raiders
IT HAS been a while, but Raiders had something to celebrate last night.
Although their inaugural season in National Two South has been blighted by an injury crisis that now sees them propping up the table, the Guernsey club’s promotion to the fourth tier of the RFU league structure for the first time in their history last April was recognised as the outstanding team achievement in yesterday’s Sporting Achievement Awards.
It is quickly back to the job at hand for Jordan Reynolds and his troops, though, as they go from a Thursday evening at Beau Sejour to spending tonight in Cornwall ahead of facing up to Redruth tomorrow.
Despite a run of 11 straight defeats, the coach is travelling with renewed optimism as Raiders, who are starting to get key players back, face a side whose recent record is not much better than their own.
After getting their season off to a strong start with six wins in their first seven games, Redruth have gone through an extraordinary slump that has realised just one more more in their next 11 fixtures.
‘When you look at their results when they were winning games, it was often by small margins,’ Reynolds said of Redruth.
‘They have always been one of the dominant sides in National Two, but I don’t think they have any real ambitions in going up to National One, and I think it’s similar to the old mentality of when sides played Leicester and they were almost beaten before they took to the field.
‘Now that Redruth have been beaten a few times, sides are fancying their chances against them and I am definitely excited about the opportunity we have to try and go to pick up a win.
‘Redruth are on a bit of a slump at the moment and, as I’ve said to the boys this week, blood is in the water and we have to start circling.’
Fit-again Owen Thomas will start at fly-half while Kiwi star Doug Horrocks also returns for Raiders.
Full awards coverage to follow