Swaffham ‘buzzing’ for maiden Greene King Eastern Counties Division One clash
It will be an historic day for Swaffham when they make their Greene King Eastern Counties Division One bow at Woodbridge.
The Division Two champions will be playing at the highest level in the club's history and joint-coach and chairman Ian Milligan says it's going to be a day to remember.
'The boys are buzzing for it,' said the man who has masterminded Swaffham's success story with John Blenkharn.
'It's the first time the club have played in Eastern Counties One and we're coming up with a ridiculously young squad. We had an average age of 21 and often played with a half-back pairing of a combined age of 35.
'We're going into it with the mindset of enjoying ourselves first and foremost. The lads play for fun. We know nothing about Woodbridge but they probably won't know much about us either so we go there with nothing to fear.'
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Outside centre Rob Impey has moved away due to work commitments but Milligan and Blenkharn look set to hand a league debut to 18-stone player Marc Lockwood who impressed hugely during pre-season and will be 'an interesting force to behold'.
Swaffham have joined rivals West Norfolk at this level and Nigel Richardson's men will be looking to get their term off to a flier at home to Southwold.
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The North Wootton outfit's form was patchy during 2012/13 but they have added some older faces to their youthful squad ahead of rugby's return at the weekend.
Richardson said: 'We've had one or two RAF lads training with us throughout the summer and they may be involved.
'Max Rust is back from university and he's replacing his younger brother Henry – who is off to university – so that's a like for like change. Jamie Williamson has come back as well and he's another who's a little bit older in his mid-20s.
'We've looked stronger in training and there looks to be more strength in depth, especially in terms of experience, than there was last season which will only help our younger players.'
West enjoyed a morale-boosting pre-season victory over higher-level rivals Wisbech and pushed Holt hard in a defeat which saw them play some 'fantastic rugby'.