Maroons ready to make promotion challenge

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Whitby Rugby Club training starts this week ahead of what is hoped to be an assault on the league title.

Sessions take place on Tuesday and Thursday at 6pm on the Showfield, continuing every week.

After a tough season last year in Northumberland and Durham League Two where they won five games from 24, they will play their rugby in divison three this coming campaign.

Darryl Grason continues as head coach with Rich Harrison forwards coach. Steve Allen remains as Maroons skipper and Matt Russell stays as vice- captain. A strengthening on the organisational side sees Matt Jones step up to first team manager while Rob Reed reprises his role as manager of the Harlequins. Matt Coomber looks likely to be one of the experienced players leading the ‘Quins on the field.

Grason said: “To be only one win away from staying up last year was a gutting experience but I thought our young side stayed true to its ambitions and played great 15-man rugby in a really tough league.

“We will lose a certain amount of players who will be moving on to further education away from Whitby but the core of the side remains.

“We have some very promising younger players ready to push through and make an impression in the firsts.

“We need competition for places and a winning mentality. It is imperative we get fit and start off the

season with some wins.”

The first match of the season is a friendly on August 23 against versus Thirsk.

The following week, Maroons take on Yorkshire outfit Ossett in the Silver Trophy at White Leys.

The first league game is September 6 when the Maroons face a tricky trip to Newton Aycliffe.

The first home game is the week after against a Prudhoe side who, along with Whitby, were relegated from division two last year.