WORTHING Raiders Rugby Club head coach Kieron Dawson believes his side will be strong contenders to make an immediate return to National 1 next season.
Raiders have been boosted by the return of Ryan Storer, who has re-joined from Ealing after last playing for Worthing in 2009. Plus, despite interest from other clubs, the majority of last season’s squad have committed their future to the Roundstone Lane club.
On top of that, Raiders will also have four players on loan from Harlequins and Dawson said: “It’s great news that Ryan has returned. He brings a lot of experience to the front row and we lacked that a bit at times last year.
“Rob Smith and Charlie McGowan have also pledged their future to the club, despite interest from elsewhere.
“Scott Barlow, Simon Gaynor, Joe Heaver and Chris Sewell are also staying and Jamie Redmayne will hopefully be back to full fitness.
“We’ll also have four players on loan from Harlequins as they’re happy with our set-up down here.
“And we’ll have a couple of players coming over from Brighton and Portsmouth as well.
“Kiba Richards is the only player who has left for rugby reasons, as Ollie Richards has moved on for work reasons.
“We’re feeling confident about next season and all the team are determined to go straight back up.”
Raiders’ fixtures for next season were released last week and Worthing will host newly-promoted Old Elthamians in their opening game on September 6, before travelling to another promoted side Dorking the following week.