Scarborough RUFC open their competitive campaign when they travel to Barnsley in the Yorkshire Shield tomorrow afternoon and coach Lee Douglas is ready and raring to go.
Despite the club losing two of their overseas stars this week as Zbynek Schutz left for Ireland and Kiwi Blake Nightingale for Amsterdam, Douglas is keen to move on and is confident of a promising season ahead.
Douglas said: “We’ve lost two of our key players this week in Blake and Spinners (Schutz), just a week before the season, which we’re a little aggrieved about.
“But we wish them well, we’re hoping to move on quickly and I believe the wheels are already in motion to bring some replacements in.
“Pre-season has gone well and despite the fact we only had one friendly, we’re in good shape going into the game at Barnsley.
“If we can get our backs some decent ball then we’ll be very strong, I’m really excited to get going now.”
Scarborough travel to Barnsley without former skipper Phil Watson, who is facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a knee injury, Matty Else and Charlie Hoggard, but Douglas is hoping the players travelling to South Yorkshire will put take their chance with both hands.
Douglas added: “We’re missing three key players in Phil, Matty and Charlie, but I’m really hoping the guys who have come in will show me why they want to be in the squad.
“We’ve got two of the young lads from the under-17s last season, Jordan Wakeham and Joe Marshall, with us and I’m hoping they’ll enjoy the day, but they’re still very young so we don’t want to put too much pressure on them at the moment.”
Douglas has been impressed with the way new club captain Tom Ratcliffe has taken to the role, adding: “Tom leads very well and he’s been very impressive so far.
“He’s the first to training and often the last one to leave and he leads by example, so I’m confident he’s going to have a very strong season.”