Selection headache may hurt but can only be a good thing

Rushden Rugby: Rushden: Rushden and Higham Rugby Club Vs Long Buckby 'Player manager Stuart Riding'Saturday 8th September 2012
Rushden Rugby: Rushden: Rushden and Higham Rugby Club Vs Long Buckby 'Player manager Stuart Riding'Saturday 8th September 2012

Rushden & Higham take their next step on what they hope is a journey to Twickenham on Saturday.

They play host to Old Leamingtonians in the RFU Senior Vase Midlands semi-final and are now just three wins away from playing at the home of English rugby.

It is a massive game in the history of the club and one everyone at Manor Park wants to be involved in.

But, as the success continues, that can prove to be something of a problem for player-coach Stuart Riding and the rest of the management team.

Rather than struggling for players, the variety of options is more of a headache.

“It’s a nice situation to be in but, as a coach, it’s a nightmare,” Riding said of his ever-increasing squad.

“We’re winning games at the moment and everyone wants to be a part of that - which is great.

“But we have more or less got everyone back fit and available so some tough decisions are going to have to be made.

“This is the worst part of my job. It’s horrible having to tell some of your mates that they are not going to be playing in such a big game for the club.

“No one deserves to miss out. The lads in the first-team having been doing really and our ‘Twos’ have been superb all season as well.

“Unfortunately some people are going to miss out.

“But that is a good sign of where we are going as a club and how we are progressing.”

Riding is hopeful that his side’s big day will attract a good following and says there is already a bit of a buzz around the club.

“It’s our biggest game of the year without a shadow of a doubt and they are exciting times – and that goes all the way through the club,” he added.

“We’ve had good support so far. We’re only a little club so we don’t get thousands of people along but there have been a couple of hundred coming to see us.

“Anyone I speak to at the moment seems to have had this date pencilled in for a while.

“It would be great to get a good crowd along to support us.”

The match at Manor Park kicks off at 2pm on Saturday afternoon.