With the knowledge that the 2015-2016 season is now no more than a few weeks away, Newton Stewart RFC have been training hard.
Preparations for the league games culminate this weekend when NSRFC take on the mighty Melrose Storm in a friendly pre-season game to whet the rugby appetite! Melrose RFC are one of the largest clubs in the country and it is a great delight for NSRFC to be able to welcome these rugby giants to their humble surroundings at Bladnoch Park.
We do not have to look too far back into the archives to find the last meeting between Newton Stewart and Melrose. January 2010 saw Newton Stewart again play host, this time to the full firsts team, in the BT Hydro Electric Cup. On that occasion Melrose were expected to make light work of their opposition, but the Newton Stewart boys put in a huge shift and battled hard in inclement weather to make the visitors sweat much more than they would have expected to in order to come away eventual winners by 22-3.
NSRFC will have to be considered underdogs again in this upcoming fixture, but this is a position they like to be in and there can be no doubt that the Newton Stewart boys are hungry for an upset. With a new look coaching team of Martin Wallace, Alisdair Gaw and Russell Gaw in place to guide the team in search of glory this year, the aim will be to start the season with a bang.
Head coach Martin Wallace said: “I’m very excited that we have managed to secure a game with Melrose Storm. It will be a big challenge but it is one that the boys are looking forward to immensely.”
Looking ahead to the coming season, Newton Stewart RFC will once again be playing in the BT West Division 1 league. There are some very good teams in this league and the standard of rugby will be high, but the local boys will aim to prove that they are up to the task. Last season saw their highest ever finish in the league with an impressive 6th place - this year NSRFC must build on this and aim to finish higher again.
The youth teams within NSRFC will recommence training in the coming weeks too following a hugely successful season last year. Under 16 and S1/S2 will commence on Wednesday 19th August from 6.30-8pm; Mini training resumes on Wednesday 2nd September from 6.30-7.30pm. The under 18s training is on Tuesday and Thursday nights from 7-9pm in conjunction with the senior team. All existing members are welcomed back to training and open arms are extended to any interested new members at all age groups, including the seniors.
Kick-off for NSRFC v Melrose Storm will be at 3pm at Bladnoch Park this Saturday 15th August. The club hopes to welcome as many supporters as possible to watch what is sure to be an exciting game.