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New Coventry, New Season

The new Coventry Rugby Club steps into the unknown tomorrow with a testing trip to rising Worcester.

Director of rugby Derek Eves has been true to his word and recruited heavily since Keith Fairbrother’s consortium rescued the club from financial ruin.

Just five weeks ago the club had only a 60-40 chance of making the first game but Eves has recruited heavily, bringing in several new faces and attracting a handful of players back to the club.

Now he is confident not only of the club surviving, but also thriving.

He said:

"Whatever happened, whether Keith Fairbrother or I had been here, there would have been a Coventry Rugby Club taking the field at Worcester. The club is too big for that not to have happened. What team it would have been, who knows, but there would have been a XV out there.

"Now, without a shadow of a doubt, it is a very good team and remember it was only a week ago that we made our last signing. I am very pleased with the people we have got for the money that was available.

"We will continue to play expansive rugby. People said we changed our style last year but we didn’t. The standard of rugby in Premiership II was far higher than the year before."

Three new faces and two familiar ones will run out at Worcester. Former Northampton and Kenilworth lock Mark Fountaine, will partner Canadian international Kevin Whitley, while prolific points scorer Steve Gough, a recent recruit from Fylde, will take over at fly-half and be the side’s kicker.

Prop Mark Crane rejoined last week and makes a quick return to Worcester after deciding to leave there for Coundon Road. Mick Curtis will start in the centre after briefly joining Nuneaton over the summer.

Gallagher, McAdam, Curtis, Robinson, Smallwood, Gough, Dawson, Sharpe, Addleton, Crane, Fountaine, Whitley, Eves, Horobin, Crofts

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CWN / Sport / Rugby / News / 4 Sep 98

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