Key trio sign new Valley contracts - The Rugby Observer

Key trio sign new Valley contracts

Rugby Editorial 9th Jun, 2014 Updated: 27th Oct, 2016   0

RUGBYTown have moved quickly to secure on contract the services of three key members of last season’s squad for 2014/15.

Valley boss Dave Stringer has persuaded skipper Alex Gudger, goalkeeper Niall Cooper and striker Seb Lake-Gaskin to sign one year deals at Butlin Road, ahead of the new campaign which will see Town attempt to return to the Calor Premier Division at the fifth attempt.

Rugby finished in runners-up in the Central Division of the league for the second successive year last time out, but again faltered in the play-offs – losing out in the semi-final at home to Slough.

The now-contracted trio accounted for seven out of the eight available player of the year awards at the recent end-of-season presentations, with Lake-Gaskin the big winner in scooping the manager’s, the players’, the supporters’ and the media awards.

Cooper picked up the Vice Presidents’ nomination as well as the silverware for the most appearances, with Gudger receiving the Carl Barnes’ shield as a reward for his on-field leadership and commitment.

Lake-Gaskin will therefore start a fourth season in Valley colours on the back of an outstanding contribution in 2013/14, which saw him pass the 100 appearance mark for Rugby and find the net 28 times in all competitions. As a result, he is now the club’s sixth highest ever scorer in Southern League games and ninth overall in senior football.

After signing last summer from Leamington – having also previously featured for Kettering and Redditch, Cooper was an ever-present in his first season at Butlin Road – impressing particularly with his shot-stopping abilities

Gudger continued his fine form for Town in his second campaign in the heart of defence – having joined from Nuneaton in August 2012, and is now only six short of a hundred starts of his own for the club.

With ace marksman David Kolodynski – the winner of the other remaining end-of-year gong of Golden Boot – also likely to commit himself to his hometown club next season, Stringer will be looking to be able to build a team around them that can go one better this time and win the title – and with it automatic promotion.

# Valley are now likely to be joined in the Calor Central Division by local rivals Bedworth, after the non-league pyramid was slightly re-jigged following Worksop’s resignation from the Northern Premier League.

The changes to the recently announced constitution will be confirmed shortly, but the Greenbacks have been transferred over to join Town – with Ware now staying within the Isthmian structure instead.

# Town are seeking a qualified physiotherapist for the coming 2014/15 season. The individual must be able commit to Saturdays for home & away games plus mid-week training. Anyone interested in the role should contact the club on 01788 866920 or by emailing [email protected]


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