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Highland Rugby Club will not stop training despite season being cancelled

By Andrew Henderson

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Highland Rugby Club have no intention of stopping training, despite the 2020/21 club season officially getting cancelled last month.

Highland v Biggar.. coach Dave Carson...Picture: Gary Anthony. Image No..
Highland v Biggar.. coach Dave Carson...Picture: Gary Anthony. Image No..

While it was accepted early on that it would not be possible to play the regular National League campaigns, a revised format was planned until Scottish Rugby’s announcement a couple of weeks ago.

Part of the reasoning for that was the number of clubs unable to train in Tier Four restrictions, but in Inverness there is nothing stopping training at Canal Park.

It is instead up to the club whether they believe it is worth training with no prospect of competitive games until next summer, but head coach Dave Carson believes that sessions are absolutely still valuable for his squad – helping them on and off the pitch.

“We’ll not stop, that’s for certain,” he insisted.

“We’re not going to say it’s over, and we’ll see everyone in pre-season, because it’s not just about the rugby.

“A lot of the boys don’t see many people, so it’s a good social element for the boys to come down and meet up with their mates as well.

“We’ve had great numbers at training, nothing has really changed on that front in the last couple of months.

“The biggest thing we’ve found really is that the boys on the fringes of the second and the third team, and some of the second 15 players have upskilled massively.”

While at first there may have been a sense of being desperate to get back to rugby after such a long enforced lay-off, the next few months will be a test of players’ commitment with no competition.

Based on what he has seen so far though, Carson has no worries about players drifting away.

“We’re in contact with the whole squad of 50-odd players, and if the guys aren’t down then they’re in the gym themselves, or running themselves,” he reasoned.

“Everyone is involved in some form or another, just not necessarily at Canal Park.

“You never know, but so far they have all been in touch, they are all working and training hard for when we do get back to play.”

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