Where did the first half of our rugby season go?
Here we are at Christmas and it's been a very busy, sometimes manic, four months of rugby at Cuffley RFC. This season so far, the weather has been kind to us with all our games at home being played, we have played more than 20 home games already this season.
With the club running 3 senior teams for the first time in our history it was always going to be a bit of a worry if we could keep playing all our teams on our single pitch at Botany Bay, our long-term plan is to have another pitch but more of our plans later.
On the playing side as I have mentioned we have been running 3 teams;
Cuffley RFC 1st XV
Cuffley returned to the RFU league structure for the first time in 7 years. So far our boys have been holding their own in this league, we are currently just below halfway having started well. We suffered with more than a few injuries, we lost both first team scrum halves and one fly half very early on in the season. It was always going to be a tough ask for our boys but they are a determined group of lads and I'm certain they will work hard to finish well in the second round of games in the new year.
Again, our second-string team started the season really well, as with the firsts the Sables are mid table in Merit Table 5, again the team gained promotion and need to find our feet in this league. The main job for all second teams is to support the first team, all the boys that have stepped up to the first team have done really well, this obviously effects the strength of the lower side, over the last few weeks the Sables have suffered slightly with so many boys being drafted into the first team.
I must praise all our players they never moan (well not much) when we move players around at the last minute, they just want to play for the club.
Again, I'm sure we will regroup and do well in the new year, if not in the league I'm sure we will keep our end up in the cup competition.
Cuffley Ladies RFC
Our Ladies team who have only been formed for just over 12 months are now playing league rugby.
We entered our Ladies into RFUW London North SE NC 2.
This is a league with a number of established ladies’ teams so with it being our first ever season we had no idea how good our team was, we played in a pre-season 10’s Competition at Hendon to try to gauge ourselves against some of the teams in our league. Our girls hit the ground running and won all our games winning the Competition.
We played one more friendly game before the league season and again we played well and easily beat Stockwood Park Ladies. With the league, imminent our girls were a bit nervous as most had never played competitive league rugby.
Again, our girls excelled in our first game against Hampstead ladies scoring freely from the start and winning our first ever league game by over 70 points. Our season has felt like a dream at times we currently sit on top of NC 2 with 8 wins from 8 games, our aim is to win the league and gain promotion to NC1.
We can't run our teams without the hard work and time put in by the coaching team at the club.
The time and effort put in by our back-room volunteers is never seen but without these guys the club simply does not work, so well done guys. We know we need to grow from within as a club, this season we have been working hard to encourage more members to take up RFU coaching badges, we currently have 8 guys including 2 ladies who are taking their badges.
Additionally, Ross Lovett has been spotted by the Herts RFU for the RFU Leadership Academy which Ross is currently attending. The RFU Leadership Academy is for a small selection of individuals who have stood out within the Rugby Community as likely personnel for future rugby. Over the year that the academy will run everyone will receive further development & assistant from the RFU as individuals and key members of their own clubs to assist with growth within their own club and the RFU in general. This is a prestigious scheme so well done Ross.
Alongside our rugby, Cuffley RFC has always had a busy social scene, we started pre-season with a fun cricket match at Botany Bay against the Bay, it was a messy beach party and I think we may have drawn the match, allegations of cheating by our scorers was obviously ignored.
Our Ladies ran their first ever social event, Take Me Out Cuffley Style, this was a brilliant event, it did help that Emmanuel (Bubba) Sonubi was our compair. I'm not sure what our girls can do to better this night?
Our ever popular quiz night was a success as ever, well done Willy.
This year we started our Cuffley Former Players Association, this is a new venture, we held our first pre-match lunch at the club before the first team game v Haringey. The whole day was a complete success, with around 25 old boys enjoying a pleasant lunch washed down with the odd beer and some fine wine. Our first team really got into the spirit of the day by beating Haringey, the celebrations went on into the evening, a fine day was had by all. We plan to hold another old boy’s get together in the new year.
As I put this letter together we are planning our Christmas Party at the club December 17th.
We realise as a growing club we can't just sit back and gloat at our recent successes.
With 3 regular teams and only one pitch at the club our long-term plan is to source more land locally to allow us to have another pitch, this we really need to work towards if we are to keep growing as a club.
We are also looking at plans to create a new floodlit training area at the club, this hopefully will be ready for next winter and will be situated in front of the cricket nets.
As you can see we are actively working to increase and improve our facilities at the club, I hope everyone keeps supporting our growing club, obviously, we can't carry out any of our plans without funds one of the easiest way to support Cuffley RFC is through an online donation site which adds funds based on online shopping.
It is easy to sign up and register, pretty much everything can be brought through the site which redirects you to the main sites. When you checkout the donation is made automatically by the main site to Cuffley Rugby Club Easy Funding page. Most internet browsers allow you to sign up and have it automatically applied on all applicable sites to save the need to go through the main site every time. Hope this all makes sense, it is a lot easier that I am making it sound. The website is below to register and get more information click here
I would like to wish all players and supporters involved in Cuffley Rugby Football Club a very Happy Christmas and a Prosperous New Year. I hope to see you all at the club in the new year for a chat and a more importantly a beer.
Gary (H) Harris