Sep 02, 2015
Saracens Women's season nears kick-off
Saracens Women’s Kerrie-Ann Craddock is raring to go ahead of the new season, writes Louise Warr.
Thursday night saw the Women’s side take on Henley Hawks in a pre-season fixture at Allianz Park, providing the girls a chance to test themselves ahead of their season opener away at Aylesford Bulls on September 6th,
Reflecting on the match Ireland prop Craddock said: “The pre-season fixture vs Henley Hawks under the lights at Allianz allowed us to assess our progress and see what areas we need to concentrate on building up to the start of the new season.
It was an excellent opportunity for players to show their talents in a bid for a Saracens jersey and also try different combinations which I’m sure has now left the coaches with a few selection headaches!
The intensity of all players involved was fantastic as was the continuous improvement throughout the match.”
The 2014/2015 season was certainly one to remember for Rob Cain’s side as the girls won a historic league and cup double, however for Craddock the achievement is simply something to build upon.
She said: “This year is really exciting for Saracens as we want to pick up on all that momentum and success we built as a club last season.
I’m really looking forward to seeing new players reaching their potential in a black and red jersey and also playing alongside some of the more experienced faces at the club.
This is an exciting time for women's rugby as a whole and Saracens will be intent on leading from the front both on and off the pitch.”
Her thoughts were echoed by head coach Rob Cain, who has been putting the girls through their paces ahead of the campaign at new home Allianz Park.
He said: “I’m really excited for the start of the season and the challenges we will face as a group starting next Sunday for our first league game.
Pre-season has been fun but we’ve worked the players hard, continuing to develop our team style while looking at individual player’s needs.
“The Premiership is now so competitive with so many teams capable of beating each other each week so there are no easy games. It’s too early to start talking about end of season honours but I will say we want to build on our exciting free flowing style and build to improve performances every week.”
There are a number of new faces around Cain’s squad this season however Saracens Women welcome four-timed England capped scrum-half Leanne Riley.
“We are very lucky to have such great facilities at Allianz Park to train and play at which really helps with our pre-season preparation. We’ve welcomed lots of new faces over the summer and they’ve been adjusting really well.
“We’re excited at the return of Leanne Riley who is back with us full time as she concentrates on her 15s career with Saracens and England. She’s a dynamic young player and she’s really looking forward to pulling on a Saracens jersey again.”