Promising set of youngsters training at Winters Park

Date: Monday 7th August 2017

PENRITH Rugby Club have had good numbers for their pre-season training sessions in July. A promising set of youngsters are coming through and they have been training with the seniors.

How this impacts on the senior sides will depend on exam grades and universities, but one who will certainly be about is prop Adam Howe, who is working locally and impressed last season when he got his chance in the first team.

Also training with the team and hopefully bolstering the front row will be Ian McDowell, who has played for the club before and is now working in Penrith. This will make up for the loss of Ryan Banks, who is busy travelling in New Zealand, and Aran Sullivan, who is not travelling from the west coast.

The coaching team, which this season includes Keith “Beef” Robinson, is pleased to have experienced utility forward James Hogg back in the squad after a year out due to family commitments.

Also in the squad is 21-year-old John Dent, from Brough, who although a bit raw, at 6ft 8in and as keen as mustard looks more than useful.

There has been a bit of turmoil over the early season fixtures. It was initially thought the artifical pitch that Penrith were looking to install in conjunction with the RFU would be bedding in in September, but as things have turned out the project has now been postponed and will now happen in the close season in 2018.

Instead of trying to arrange September games away from home because of the plastic pitch, the only change is that the opening game of the season against Cleckheaton will be at home instead of away.

This will mean the Cleckheaton game at the end of April will be away to allow the contractors to get on the old grass pitch as soon as possible and hopefully have the new artifical surface in place for pre-season training next season.

There are two pre-season outings, a game at home against Biggar and a joint training session with Aspatria on 19th and 24th August respectively.

Harlan Corrie has gone, with the blessing of the club, to Fylde to try his hand at National League 1 level.

He has been training there but has also had a couple of sessions at Penrith when not required at Fylde, and everyone at the club hopes he will make a success of it.

The club were disappointed to lose the services of last season’s captain, Mike Fearon, who has decided to move to Kendal.