Scarborough RUFC’s new first XV coach Jason Lowde has admitted that losing Australian Rob James is a blow, but he is still optimistic heading into his first season in the role.
Lowde will not have the services of James after he snapped ligaments in his right knee while playing in Australia.
But the new coach is still pleased with the players he has at his disposal for the upcoming campaign, and insists recruitment & retention officer Nick Ingham is actively seeking to bring in fresh faces, both domestically and further afield.
Lowde also has aggressive fly-half Phil Stewart back in the squad after missing last season after travelling to New Zealand, and Billy Parker is also expected back from New Zealand imminently.
Speaking to The Scarborough News, the new coach said: “All the signs were positive that Rob was going to be returning to the club for the upcoming season, and it seems he’s picked up an injury in Australia while playing and trying to get his fitness up for pre-season.
“We’re really upset that he won’t be returning and it will be hard for anyone to fill his boots, but we’re blessed with a lot of good players at the club and we’re actively looking to strengthen the squad aswell.
“We’ve got Phil Stewart back available after he was away in New Zealand last season, and Billy Parker should be returning too.
“We’re not happy just settling for an average season again this year. Our aspirations are going to be higher this year, that’s for sure.”