Deacs' Week: Hill and Old Cents will lead the county charge
Deacs' Week with Cinderford Director of Rugby Andy Deacon:
CONEY Hill and Old Cents are the leading lights in county rugby at the moment.
We played Old Cents at Cinderford in pre-season, and they have got a nice brand of rugby.
Their coach Jack Preece understands the game and coaches them well, along with Dave Knight.
Sunday and Monday evenings £12.00 per head for an all inclusive meal with Indian and Thai cuisine (normal price £14.50).
Bring this voucher to the restaurant complete with your name and email address on it.
Terms: Expires 31st July
Contact: 01452 223782
Valid until: Wednesday, July 31 2013
Even though they lost their opening match to Reading on Saturday, they will still do well in South West One East and they have got enough to make sure they finish mid-table or more.
Coney Hill seems to have stabilised compared to this time last season.
The realisation of where they were after relegation has set in and they have got a decent squad together, disciplined and hard working.
You have to have reliable players, plus stability and cohesion, which they now have with their coach Chris Hall, and they are all enjoying what Chris does in training, along with Freddie Burns.
As a pair, they will do a good job and it is hard managing players' and club's expectations because you can't get success overnight.
You have to work hard at it, and evolve it and have structure and this is what they strive for at Coney Hill.
Matson have also stabilised after a few turbulent years going up and down the leagues, but where they are now in Western Counties North is about right.
Chosen Hill have come down into South West One East and have to make sure the right players are put on the pitch and stay fit.
They suffered from not having a large squad but when they get the guys out that they have available they can do well.
I think it was tough for them last season especially with having to travel a lot.
I think they will have a better time of it this season with less travelling as they are playing quite a few local Bristol clubs as well as the likes of Matson and Cirencester.
It is quite amazing to see Stroud and Gordon League both in the Gloucester Premier Division.
Stroud will come back, with James Bashford and Craig Jones who are two enthusiastic guys and know how to win.
They have got to be favourites for that league along with Drybrook, our Forest of Dean neighbours.
Drybrook are going well and have the potential to push up into a higher league, being a good stable club.
In Gloucester One you have clubs such as Hucclecote, Longlevens, Brockworth, Gloucester Old Boys, Old Richians: all established local Combination sides that will make for exciting local derbies.
They all want to do well and it is like a good old fashioned league – in that it will be tight with the likes of Cheltenham Saracens who have been improving for several seasons.
It is a long season and you have to play well and sustain that continuity all the way through.
EXEMPLARY BUCKO MADE MY EVENING
I HAD an enjoyable evening at Sixways on Monday night where the Gloucester United team beat Worcester's second string 82-0.
My old friend Peter Buxton had to do an 80 minute shift in the back/second row.
I think academy (development level) players at all clubs including Gloucester, Hartpury and even Cinderford Colts could all take a leaf out of Bucko's book.
For all these young players that want to do so much in the game and achieve a lot should just have a look at what it takes; he is the benchmark in skill, passion and hard work.
Totally exemplary it was great to watch a guy that has played top end rugby all of his life, and is in the United team in order to get game time and push for that first team place, was brilliant.
Same goes for Andy Hazell and his 40 minutes.
With the last-but-one try of the game Bucko went over and scored in the corner and threw the ball and his arms up in the air in jubilation and it just shows what it means to him even in an United game in the last minute.
After putting in a shift of graft and skill, it made my evening, well done Pete!
GOOD LUCK COUNTY CLUBS.............EVEN LYDNEY
LYDNEY have an ex-international in charge in Duncan Bell, and they can only go forward.
Hopefully he can get them into good shape with a strong coaching regime, and build a good structure into their game. Let's see what they can do.
I have played against Duncan before but can't remember too many games as we were on the opposite sides of the scrum.
We have spoken several times this summer about the possibility of reaching a loan deal with our players, but this isn't possible at present and also there is quite a bit of rivalry between the two clubs!
Duncan has had a few trials and tribulations with regards to props, but he has got some in there now and hopefully they can have a solid platform to work off..
What they have got to do – like everyone in rugby – is look at realistic expectations of where they are and where they are going.
Their win against Barking on Saturday will certainly help.
That said Barking were relegated last season and might not win a game this year so it is hard to gauge where they are at this stage.
Lydney are a big club in the county and I wish them well – despite the Forest of Dean competitiveness!
I want all of the Gloucestershire clubs to do well, whether that is in Gloucester Three, the National Leagues or the Premiership.
That extends to Hartpury as well.
Cinderford beat them in a high energy pre-season game; it was like Man City versus Man United shutting the noisy neighbours up!
There were many familiar faces that day, players retiring and going into coaching, but everyone still passionate about what they do and that is the thing – you have to have a passion and you want to do it right.
I am seeing more and more players I used to play with and against, now joining me on the sidelines.
Great to see how we all stay within the game though.
As well as talent and passion, money also plays a key part, especially in the national league.
We are lucky to have a management team at Cinderford that firstly has the passion and the belief, backed by experience and knowledge and not just in rugby but other areas including finance and commerce, that is required to be successful.
Over the years we have become established, sustainable and more professional with a great infrastructure that has nurtured players up and onto the highest tiers in rugby, and it's not all down to money, believe you me. Good coaches produce successful sides.
You need a solid infrastructure and a good management board that has vision to lead the club. We are fortunate at Cinderford to have both.