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Rugby Union: Old Cooperians preparing well for life in London Two North East

PUBLISHED: 11:00 12 August 2016 | UPDATED: 12:49 13 August 2016

Old Cooperians celebrate winning the London Three North East last season (pic: Alex Dexter Photography)

Old Cooperians celebrate winning the London Three North East last season (pic: Alex Dexter Photography)

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Coach Pat Reed looking forward to first pre-season friendly at Barking

With their pre-season campaign starting at home to Barking next Friday, preparations are well underway at Old Cooperians as they adjust to life in London Two North East.

Coops had a memorable time last term, winning the London Three North East title with a sensational 17-game winning streak and lost just twice in the league in total.

Focus has now turned to their new season, with the club cautiously optimistic that they can maintain their place in the competition.

A good pre-season campaign could prove key to achieving those ambitions, and player-coach Pat Reed says everything is looking good ahead of their first friendly at home to Barking on August 19 at 7.30pm.

“Pre-season has been going well. Myself, Craig Ratford and Ian Clevery have worked hard during this pre-season to adapt our style and game plan to be able to compete in London Two,” said the flanker.

“With good numbers attending sessions, the lads have really worked hard on their conditioning and bought into the new structures we have put in place. Whilst the boys have remained level-headed after a great season last year, confidence is high due to their efforts.

“We have recruited well for the start of the new season. This coupled with lads returning from university has boosted our squad numbers and strength in depth. Undoubtedly there will be stiff competition for places this season.

“Harry Fayers keeps the captaincy, but he will be supported by George Wilkins who was named pack leader. Sam Wheeler has stepped down as second-team captain due to study commitments and has been replaced by Adam Felgate.

“The second team have become a focus point this season so we have appointed Sean Kavanagh as second-team coach/manager.”

“Welcome to new sponsors Essex Thermal Services, Winning Smiles, Lady John Properties, Xpert Agents, The Little Big Ironing Company and Camp Woodhall.”

The club’s last pre-season friendly is against local rivals Upminster on September 3, a week before they begin their league campaign away to Cantabrigians.

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