Bannockburn Rugby Club had a campaign to remember after achieving league promotion, following a strong end to their 2018-19 season.
Promotion was confirmed after Stobswell RFC could not field a team for the final league match of the season.
The senior XV will play in the Tennent’s Caledonia Midlands 3 league from 31 August 2019, with games against familiar foes Dunfermline and Montrose – and heavy-hitters such as Grangemouth, Arbroath and Waid Academy – all ahead for the ‘Burn.
The 2018-19 season saw some memorable games including two close encounters with league-topping Dunfermline – Bannockburn running the Fifers close in both matches – and a 111-point thrashing dished out to Glenrothes back in January.
New head coach
News of Bannockburn’s promotion success this week coincided with the appointment of new head coach Jimmy Samuel, with departing head coach Nick Cram resuming his accomplished playing career with the club.
Jimmy brings a wealth of coaching and playing experience, with the senior team already experiencing the benefits.
Bannockburn RFC Club Captain Calum Bruce said:
“We’re absolutely ecstatic that our hard work on and off the pitch paid off this season. We’re raring for the season to start and can’t wait to face the challenges ahead.
“I’d like to thank Nick Cram, who stepped up as Head Coach at the start of the season. He has done a fantastic job, and it will be good to see him back in a Bannockburn jersey next season.
“Thank you to all the supporters who followed us home and away last season – I promise next year will be just as exciting!”
Bannockburn RFC Club President Kevin McCormack said:
“It’s been an excellent season. For the third year in a row we have made progress and smashed our targets. We are already in a great position going into the next campaign with the new coaching infrastructure in place, and a good bunch of lads eager to play.
“Thanks must go to the players, coaches, committee, clubhouse staff and supporters who contributed during the season. On behalf of the club, we welcome new head coach Jimmy Samuel. Jimmy’s wealth of experience in both regiment and club rugby will be a great asset to the club and exciting times lie ahead.
“Similarly we wish former head coach Nick Cram all the best as he continues his rugby adventure by resuming his playing career into the golden years.”
Departing Bannockburn RFC Head Coach Nick Cram said:
“This season has been one of real growth, both personally and for the squad. As my first season as a head coach and first full season coaching adult rugby it has been a privilege to see the development and engagement from all quarters.
“I look forward to being part of the continued growth next season and have confidence that further success is ours for the taking.”
New Bannockburn RFC Head Coach Jimmy Samuel said:
“The season past has seen the beginning of firm foundations being laid for the First XV and Bannockburn RFC as a whole. Promotion to Cali 3 provides an excellent opportunity for the senior team to build on these foundations.
“I’m really excited to coach this team towards the potential they clearly have, in a competitive and consistent league structure.”
Bannockburn RFC Director of Rugby Martin Kenny said:
“The committee, club members and friends of the club have been working hard to provide a foundation to allow players to succeed. This promotion is just the next step along the Bannockburn RFC journey.
“As an inclusive club we welcome everyone from primary one to retirement, players and non-players. Everyone makes a difference, so we’d love to see more folks down at the club.”
Though the league season is over, supporters and friends of the club can get their fix of the ‘Burn at the Captain v President game on Saturday 1 June 2019. The club will also host the Juniors’ End of Season Awards and Family Day on the same day – all are welcome.
The first XV Awards & Dinner Dance night takes place on Friday 3 May. Tickets can be purchased from club officials, or through our PayPal pool: https://www.paypal.com/pools/c/8cC92bBHnz