Eton Manor coach having to deal with injuries
PUBLISHED: 12:30 01 September 2015
Promoted London One North outfit worried about fitness of players ahead of league opener
Eton Manor head coach Jamie Connors has been frustrated with the number of injuries his side has picked up during the summer as they embark on their debut season in the National League.
The New Wilderness outfit began their National League Three South campaign at home against Hertford on Saturday.
Manor have played friendly matches against Chelmsford and Brighton recently, but they have struggled to get everybody fit.
Connors said: “We have got a few injuries again unfortunately. Steven Ross, one of our wingers, has broken a bone in his hand.
“He is having surgery. Jack Sullivan, our second-row, has torn a tricep so he is having an operation this week. Both are likely to be out until Christmas time.
“It is a blow so we have lost a couple, which is not ideal, but we have got a few who are very close to coming back like Ben Thomas, who was the backs coach last year. Hopefully he won’t miss too many games.
“He is pretty close to coming back, but we don’t want to rush his rehab because he has had a knee reconstruction. We are hopeful that he will only miss one or two games at the start of the season.
“Alfie Hutchinson, who didn’t feature at all last year, has played both pre-season games and looks pretty good. He can play six or eight or in the second row, it is good to have him back.”
Manor have also strengthened the squad and Connors is pleased with his new additions. The New Zealander is also happy with the work-outs they have had during their pre-season campaign.
Although they were beaten at Brighton, they defeated Chelmsford and both have sharpened the fitness of the players ahead of this weekend.
Connors added: “We had a few new props so that is good. We have a new second row chap and a three or four new backs so the squad overall looks good, but we just need to make sure we get the key players fit and back on the park.
“We had a pretty good result against Chelmsford and I think we won 44-17 and that was a good result. They are a strong side and good in the forwards department and have a good set-up so that was important for us.
“We struggled with numbers when we went down to Brighton. We probably only had half the first team playing, we had a lot of second team people involved.
“In the end we lost 33-17 but we had a lot of people pull-out because of holiday’s or last minute pull-outs for other reasons so that was a bit of a struggle.
“If we take it for what it was, a hit-out, as opposed to anything else and it was another chance to get some match fitness so it was okay.”
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