As we near the end of 2020, I'm sure most of us will be happy to forget the year that closed rugby. At this point, as well as wishing you all a very happy Christmas, I would like to thank everyone for their efforts and support throughout the pandemic.
Let's not forget that in March, our 1st XV were finishing 3rd in Merit 4 and were likely to make and hopefully win their divisional cup final. The 2nd team had finally secured a win and the young team and old folks would have been looking forward to taking on Writtle in the plate final.
Sadly, Corona virus took away the finals, Unders v Overs and presentation nights.
Since that time, we have not been able to play our great game properly and it has hurt.
The club has been bombarded with rules and regulations that have not been pleasing. The RFU invented Ready4rugby, a version of touch that I personally think was rubbish. Our new Coach, Peter Doolin has been restricted on what he can have the lads doing, so we are yet to see his plans in full motion.
Yet another frustration has been our inability to open the bar up and enjoy the social side of rugby.
All this has obviously been a source of tension and some within the club have aired frustrations that more has not been done.
With the benefit of hindsight, there are things we could have done differently or better. But I am confident that decisions have always been made with the best interests of the club and it's members at the top of priorities.
Throughout the club, each section has shown resilience. The juniors have not had matches but have had good numbers training while adapting to the rules to ensure the safest environment possible. Senior training has been well attended in spite of lack of contact and limited facilities. O2 Touch have taken every opportunity to play and their communications are spot on. The committee has seen some tensions rising as individuals have felt more could be done. It is a shame that a couple have left the committee but there is a duty of care that over rides any desire to open the bar. That duty of care includes financial benefits of doing so, the managing of social distancing measures, the costs of setting up and making good after such an event and the risks of getting any aspect of it wrong.
To that end, The management board have had to bear the brunt of the criticism, whilst exercising their duty to look after the club as a business.
As someone involved in just about every section of the club I have been incredibly impressed by the commitment shown through these times. I am not pretending there haven't been problems and I am sad to think that some players may wish to play at another club, I only hope they reconsider. However, this club of ours has made it through some bleak times before and will do so again because many individuals never give up.
With the invention of Tier 4, I have little hope of real rugby this season but pray we can play in 2021-2022. I hope you can all have a joyous Christmas in spite of Boris's latest news and look forward to seeing you sometime in the future.
Kind regards and Best Wishes to you all.