The closed season has been a busy time for newly promoted National One rugby side Rams Rugby. After a hugely successful campaign in the 4th tier of English rugby they are now setting their sights on the challenges ahead in National 1.
Director of Rugby and Head Coach Seb Reynolds, as well as finding the time to get married in June, has been finalising his squad to play against rugby aristocrats Richmond, Blackheath, Rosslyn Park as well as local rivals, Chinnor.
Reynolds’ delight in retaining the squad is evident: “It’s been great to meet-up with the players over the last few weeks and see the hunger and excitement that the challenge of National One is bringing to the team. Hugely important is the retention and development of a cohesive group and we’ve been able to secure virtually all of last year’s team which is fantastic. But we’ve also taken the opportunity to strengthen the squad in a few areas. Scrum half Jack Moates – formerly a Newbury mini/junior, Wasps and Jersey joins us from Loughborough Students, winger Henry Bird from Old Redcliffians, Cam Zeiss from Esher, Dan Lewis from Marlow, former Bracknell mini/junior Connor Hayhow joins from Rosslyn Park and Tom Gulland from Peterborough Lions."
Rams are also maintaining their emphasis on championing local Berkshire talent and have secured the services of Max Hayman and Alex Sparkes from Newbury and Louis Ellis from Maidenhead, all of whom represented Berkshire in this year’s Division 2 Final of the Jason Leonard Under 20’s Championship at Worcester Warriors Sixways stadium.
Seb went on to mention the new coaching support this season:
'I am very lucky to have a coaching team at Rams who believe and understand what we are trying to achieve. That developing skills, coaching through games and developing decision makers is important to our growth and the game of rugby in the area. Danny Batty, Owen Root, Joe Southwell, Paddy Conlon and Gavin O’Meara will be working hard to help our squad improve once again. This summer we’re very pleased to be able to have the support of John Kingston (Ex DOR of Harlequins) and Greig Tonks (London Irish and Scotland) within our coaching set-up. John will be working in a consultancy and advisory role and Greig will be working on core skills development, especially with the half-backs.
Rams pre-season games start with a XV-a-side Festival at their Old Bath Road Ground in Sonning on Saturday 17th August
. Bars open at 12 noon and games kick off 1pm, where you will be able to see new recruits as the team regulars face great opposition from Westcliff RFC, Chinnor RFC, Pontypool RFC and Bournemouth RFC.
Rams then travel to Championship side Doncaster Knights on Saturday 31st August
, kick off 2.30pm.
The National One campaign starts in earnest on the Saturday 7th September
away at Cambridge RFC and their first home game a week later, on Saturday 14th September
vs Birmingham Moseley RFC.
Season tickets for RAMS NAT 1 season can be purchased on the RAMSRUGBY.SHOP
for just £120 for all 15 games. Membership options also available.