Guernsey Press

Reynolds wants his Raiders to enjoy their rugby again

Relax is the buzz word in the Guernsey camp as they attempt to get back to ‘the Raiders way’.

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Jamie Dunn is in line to start in the front row for Raiders at North Walsham with Sam Steventon having picked up an injury against Canterbury. (Picture by Martin Gray,, 32732138)

They visit National Two East basement boys North Walsham tomorrow, aiming to end a run of four successive defeats which has left them glancing over their shoulders at those below them in the table.

‘This week we have been talking about having a bit of a reset and play a little bit more relaxed because we feel we’re putting a lot more pressure on ourselves than the opposition are,’ said director of rugby Jordan Reynolds.

‘Looking back at last week, we were asking how much pressure did Canterbury really put on us, the same with Westcombe Park the week before, and when we lost to Barnes we made a couple of mistakes in our own half that were costly – so of lot of it is coming from our unforced errors.

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‘I feel from since the Dorking game we are perhaps trying to be something we are not and we have just got to get back to what we enjoy doing. While we are desperate for a win, it is also important to understand that it is just a game that we all love.’

Raiders have a whole host of personnel and positional changes, several due to this weekend’s travel requirements with the trip to Norfolk unable to be done in a day. Just four of last week’s starting XV against Canterbury will be taking to the field in the same shirt seven days later.

Sam Steventon and Carter Hackett picked up injuries last week while a host of players, including co-captain Lewis Hillier, Owen Thomas, Dan Rice, Dan Barnes and Charlie Simmonds, are unavailable.

‘We have a lot of changes, but it is still a strong squad,’ Reynolds said.

North Walsham are rooted to the bottom of the table and have yet to win a match so far this campaign, but experience tells Raiders that their hosts cannot be underestimated.

‘They have had a bit of a slow start to the season, but they are not a bad side.

‘What has tended to happen this season is they remain close up to half-time, but then games get away from them in the second half, so we need to stay in the fight as long as we can.

‘We were one of the few sides who did not beat them on the road last season, too, so that still plays on the mind.’

Guernsey Raiders team

Dunn, Le Noury, Currie, Culverhouse, Webb, Burger, M Creber, Dom Rice, Boyland, Davies, Smith, Teasdale, C McGann, N McGann, Roberts. Replacements: Bray, Phelan, Williamson, Rutledge, K Creber.