Thursday 27th February 2015 – Old Elthamians RFC has today announced the appointment of ex-premiership duo Ross Broadfoot and Aaron Liffchak to its playing and coaching team for the 2015-16 season. Both Ross and Aaron have represented England at junior level under 16s 18s and 21s and bring premiership experience to the side – having played for a number of top English teams. They arrive during a hugely successful period for the Chislehurst-based club, which has been on a fast track promotion ride since 2010,gaining 3 promotions in 4 seasons and rising to National 2 in the RFU leagues.
Ross Broadfoot will join Old Elthamians RFC at the start of the 2015-16 season as backs player/coach, having previously played for Leicester Tigers and London Irish in the English Premiership, being capped by the Barbarians and established himself as one of the top kickers in the RFU Championship with both Bedford and more recently for Jersey.
Aaron Liffchak, who played as loose or tight prop for a number of prestigious clubs including Saracens (where he made his Guinness Premiership debut), London Welsh and London Scottish, will join as forwards player coach once the season has ended leaving National 1 Rosslyn Pk in the process.
The pair join an experienced coaching line-up, which is run by Gavin Lach, whom Old Elthamians RFC recently announced as its new full time Director of Rugby till the end of the 2016/17 season.
“Ross and Aaron are a dream team in terms of the experience and expertise they will offer the club, in both where we are looking to go and also what they can bring to Gavin’s set up,” said Kobus Paulsen, founder and CEO of club sponsor Secure Trading and a long-time supporter of Old Elthamians RFC. “We’re delighted to offer them their first coaching roles, in what we hope will be an invaluable partnership. Being able to bring in ex-professionals who have played at the top level of the game certainly reflects the ambitions we have for the club as it continues to move up the ranks of English rugby.”
Secure Trading is the principle sponsor of Old Elthamians Rugby Club, sponsoring not only the 1st team, but also all other senior junior teams.
"These will be the first of several marquee signings I have identified for the 15/16 season, to add depth both to the coaching and playing side of the club. I am very excited to be able to add two players of this quality to my staff for next season" commented Gavin Lach OERFC Director of Rugby. "Aaron and Ross will be able to fine tune many things that I am looking at. Having both played in the premiership, they have a vast wealth of experience that I intend to tap into. Both players have totally bought into the club ethos of what we are and where we are looking to go, so these are exciting times. You add this to the new rugby playing and training facility that is being built at Eltham College, everybody at the club is going to be of benefit, from the under 6's to the 1st xv – which is the one club moto we have adopted over the last few years. Both players are only 29, which means they have several good years of 1st xv rugby ahead of them and hopefully they can both help us move forward to the next level"
Another bit of good news to add to this is that 1st xv captain for the last two seasons, Alastair Vanner, has agreed to stand as 1st xv captain again for the 2016/17 season. "I have thoroughly enjoyed being captain over the last two seasons, given the way the club is going, and its ambition had a major say in my decision to retain the captaincy. When I was asked about standing next season by Gavin , I did not have to take too long. Given the announcement that both Ross and Aaron will be joining us, and also knowing who else Gavin has been talking and got onboard for next season over the last couple of months, I’m really looking forward to being involved in for next season, so I happily accepted" said Vanner.