Rugby Union: Woodford head coach Tom Redfern wants to make the Highams a fortress as season begins at home to Romford

PUBLISHED: 16:30 08 September 2016

The new rugby season has just begun (pic: Mick Kearns/TGSPHOTO)

The new rugby season has just begun (pic: Mick Kearns/TGSPHOTO)

Mick Kearns/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY

Woodford head coach hopes to show there’s no place like home on Saturday

Woodford start their assault on the London Two North East title at home to Romford on Saturday and new head coah Tom Redfern is looking forward to getting started.

Redfern spent last season at the Highams as an assistant coach, but has now stepped up to the top job in place of Andy Murphy, who will assist the new man in charge.

Both Woodford and Romford were relegated from London One North at the end of the 2014/15 season, but with the Highams club placed in Two North West last term, it will be the first meeting between the sides since that ill-fated campaign.

But Redfern is confident that it will be Woodford celebrating a successful start to the season come Saturday evening.

“It’s a bit of a local derby against Romford, so it will be an interesting first game for some of the members of the squad who have been at Woodford when they were last in London One North,” said Redfern.

“For the newer members, though, there is not as much history with Romford for them, but it will be interesting to see how we go.

“The boys are also keen to show the teams in this division that Woodford is a tough place to go to.”

The Highams club will be led this season on the pitch by Peter Hyett, who has been named skipper with Alex Pollock taking the role of vice-captain.

But Redfern, who himself will be the youngest coach in the division at just 22, said there will be a leadership group featuring some of the more youthful squad members.

“We’re working with some of the younger players to make sure they are future leaders and are educating them,” added Redfern.

“The idea is should Peter or Alex not be available or step down in future seasons, there will be someone there, ready and able to step up if and when required.”

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