Scarborough RUFC coach Simon Smith is hoping his side can hit the ground running when they open up their North One East campaign at Cleckheaton on Saturday.
Smith’s men performed well above expectations in their debut season in the league last year, just missing out on promotion, and the coach is hoping his side can continue their form into the new campaign.
Smith said: “We’re cautiously optimistic, but the numbers returning are positive and as the season progresses we will continue to strengthen.
“Having played Goole and Hullensians in pre-season, they have proved to be a good tester for the squad.
“We’ve had two really tough games against sides who have big forwards and this is ideal preparation.”
Despite losing key players, Smith is positive that new recruits and up-and-coming players will bolster his squad.
“We have a good range of players who are prepared for the season,” he added.
“Angus Frend is a good signing and he has fitted in well.
“Youngsters like Will Rennard will be getting a chance to play this season and he deserves his opportunity, alongside other members of the squad, due to their commitment during pre-season.”
Smith continues to believe in giving local lads the chance to play in the first-team.
“We want to have shirts available for Scarborough lads who are good enough,” added Smith.
“As you can see with the whole structure, each team is captained by a player who has come up through the ranks.”
With trips to Cleckheaton and Kendal, Smith is aware it’s a difficult start for his side.
“We have been given a tough start to the season and we need to put in strong performances,” he added.