League and cup double is just the start for ambitious Verulamians

PUBLISHED: 11:28 04 May 2017 | UPDATED: 11:28 04 May 2017

Mike Hollister lifts the Presidents' Trophy after Verulamians beat Barnet Elizabethans at Allianz Park. Picture: KARYN HADDON

Mike Hollister lifts the Presidents' Trophy after Verulamians beat Barnet Elizabethans at Allianz Park. Picture: KARYN HADDON

Archant

A champagne season for Verulamians Rugby Club finished with a second trophy – and they are determined that the best is yet to come.

A convincing 53-10 victory over Barnet Elizaethans at Allianz Park saw them retain the Herts Presidents’ Trophy, won last year with a similarly impressive win over Watford.

And it adds to the Herts Middlesex One crown which saw the Cotlandswick-based side promoted to London North West Three.

But if the management have anything to do with it, they will be celebrating plenty more silverware in the future.

“It’s been a great season,” said skipper Mike Hollister. “We’ve worked really hard. We had a coach outgoing and a new coach coming in but I’m just really pleased for the boys to finish off the season on a high.

“Typically we start slowly and finish quick but we put the pressure on Barnet early doors. They couldn’t handle the phase play; they didn’t have the ball for the first 20 minutes.

“We played hard, played our patterns and phases and it all came together and we scored some good tries.

“We’ve suffered with some key injuries to players but the whole squad have come together. We’ve worked hard at training to perfect those lines of running. But it just comes down to hard work.

“For me that’s it. I’m off to America so I’m handing the reins over to someone else. But I’m sure under new coach Sam Perry and everyone working hard we’ll be pushing on.

“We don’t want to settle next year; we want to push on and fight for promotion in the new league. Bring it on.”

Perry himself is in total agreement.

Pre-season plans are all but finalised for the start of July and the new coach is ready and raring to go.

He said: “We’ve got ourselves a really strong side here and I’m really looking forward to taking over.

“The foundations have been laid through all the hard work the boys have done this season and in years gone by.

“Every team has things they need to work on and we’ll be working hard on them through pre-season.

“But we’re looking forward to hitting the ground running and showing the division above what we’re all about.”

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