This is always a busy time of year off the ice, Steve and Geoff are attending league meetings and sorting sponsors out for the new season. I am recruiting and this off-season has been a challenging one to say the least. We will once again have a number of new faces to the line-up come September, but the players we have gained should slot in well with what being a ‘Raider’ is all about.
We will be saying goodbye to a number of players that have served our club very well over the last few seasons. The first player I would like to mention is Richard Facey, he has been with us for five season and has been a massive part of our team. He will be joining his good mate Alex Murray in Gosport and we wish him all the best. The second player is Alex Barker, he is moving up to the Bracknell Bees this season and after two good years with us I am hoping he has a big impact on their club. Simon Hobbis is another player that has been with us for two seasons and he is making a move to play in the States and I think that is a great opportunity for any young player to take advantage of. The last player I would like to mention is Carl Graham and even though he was only with us for one season, he made an enormous impact on our club both on and off the ice. Carl will be joining Alex in Bracknell this season and I’m sure he will do a wonderful job in the EPL.
I’m sure a lot of our fans will be upset about the number of players moving on again this season, but it has always been part of the game and we will try our hardest to find replacements that the fans will be proud of.
I have a few spots left and we will be holding an open try out on June 15th. I am hoping to uncover a gem or two that may have flown under the radar so far this summer.
This time of year I also design the new kit and I forwarded my ideas off to Steve the other night and he likes the new ideas as well. We will now get that finalised and start the order so we have them on time for when the season starts in September. Also, I will be taking equipment and stick orders from the guys and sending those off to the supplier so we can have those ready for the new season.
My wife Rachael loves this time of year because I seem to be on the phone for every spare minute I have. I must admit, recruiting is my favourite time of year and I can’t wait to see how this new edition of Raiders will measure up against the rest of the league.
I will continue to update my coach’s comments as signings are made, so make sure to check back!