RUGBY: Kenny takes skipper’s role

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Coleraine Rugby Club has a new captain, 22-year-old Kenny Calladine.

Kenny has been with the club since last season but missed out on most of it through injury. Now he is fully fit and ready for the challenges of the season ahead.

“We have had a lot of changes this season and some people don’t expect us to perform too well but I think we will surprise a lot of them”, said Kenny.

Despite his tender years, Kenny has packed in a lot of experience, playing at No8. A member of the School’s Cup winning side at Belfast Inst, he moved on to three seasons at Malone, playing senior rugby on the First XV from the start.

In his last year at Malone he took over the captaincy for the final half of the season, losing only one match. Kenny has also played for Ulster ‘A’.

Now a student at the University of Ulster in Coleraine, Kenny is looking forward to playing his part in developing a new look Coleraine.

He said: “I am looking forward to the challenge of developing this year’s squad at Coleraine. We have lost a few players from last season but in my eyes it opens doors for new guys to step up.

“There are a lot of real quality players in the squad and we have an exciting mix of experience and new talent. I think we are going to surprise a few people.

“We have new coaches, a lot of team changes and people are not expecting miracles. There’s not too much pressure starting the season and that leaves things open for us to prove them wrong.

“I see exciting prospects and I am really looking forward to the season.”

Training is now well under way at the club and players of all abilities, new and returning players and those who just want to try out a fast paced physical game, are invited to join in at the club every Tuesday and Thursday evening. Contact the club for further details.

A number of warm-up matches have been arranged over the next few weeks and the first league fixture is away to Clogher Valley on September 1, a stern test for the developing squad.