Town boss Terry: Lack of players massively disappointing for a town of this size

PUBLISHED: 16:24 04 March 2019

Andrew Malins passes off the back of a ruck in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

Andrew Malins passes off the back of a ruck in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2019 Archant

They may be punching above their weight but Stevenage Town's head coach Terry Penny says the lack of available players for his battling side is "massively disappointing for a town of this size".

Nick Moore hurdles a tackle from Gareth Lewis in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOONick Moore hurdles a tackle from Gareth Lewis in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

The North Road-based rugby club has finished third in each of the last two London Three North West seasons, missing out on promotion on both occasions, and they are set for even more heartache after the 20-5 loss at home to Datchworth all but ended their hopes this year.

Alex Nolan slips the tackle of Darren Outram in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOAlex Nolan slips the tackle of Darren Outram in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

And Penny says they may have to face-up to that fate continuing over and over again if they cannot attract new players to the club.

Alex Nolan takes on Alex Banna and Darren Outram in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOAlex Nolan takes on Alex Banna and Darren Outram in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

He said: “We do punch above our weight for our resources and facilities and what we have to do.

Jake Ebhodaghe holds off a challenge from Michael Wilson to score in the corner in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOJake Ebhodaghe holds off a challenge from Michael Wilson to score in the corner in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“But we only had 17 players available against Datchworth. I had to pull two players in who are not regulars and every week I’m putting together a team from of a pool of 18 players.

Ian Crompton runs into Sam Brunton and Mark Holgate in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOIan Crompton runs into Sam Brunton and Mark Holgate in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“That’s massively disappointing for a town of this size.

Vincent Kevans is tackled by Tom Balackwell and John Simons in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOVincent Kevans is tackled by Tom Balackwell and John Simons in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“Stevenage has a huge catchment area but on Tuesday I had 12 players training.

Phil Pearson carries the ball into a tackle in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOPhil Pearson carries the ball into a tackle in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“Datchworth will put out three teams and have 50 people.

Michael Wilson looks dejected in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOMichael Wilson looks dejected in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“I don’t understand why that is and I don’t know how we can attract people with our humble facilities.

James Young runs at Jesse Tipane and Alex Banna in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOJames Young runs at Jesse Tipane and Alex Banna in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“We’re clutching onto the hope of moving somewhere else and it will improve then but that can’t come quick enough.

Liam Walker takes on Jesse Tipane and Phil Pearson in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOLiam Walker takes on Jesse Tipane and Phil Pearson in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“The reality is I’ve got very limited resources.”

Ian Crompton holds onto James Young in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOIan Crompton holds onto James Young in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

As for the match itself a misfiring back-line didn’t help in a contest where he admitted they “were second best in every department”.

Alex Nolan looks to get past Jesse Tipane in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOAlex Nolan looks to get past Jesse Tipane in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

He said: “They were much more organised, they were up for it much more than we were and we couldn’t breach their defence, who were magnificent all afternoon.

Tom Wood passes off the back of a ruck in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOTom Wood passes off the back of a ruck in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

They were worthy winners, to a man they played better than us and I’ve got complaints whatsoever with the result.

Wes Moore and George Turvey take down Liam Walker in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOWes Moore and George Turvey take down Liam Walker in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“However, I am disappointed with my team’s performance. I’m heartbroken but that’s another season gone.

Gareth Lewis restarts the game in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOGareth Lewis restarts the game in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“We’ve had problems with our back-line for three or four games where we haven’t been able to move the ball fluently and create chances.

George Turvey looks to grab a loose ball in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOGeorge Turvey looks to grab a loose ball in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“We work hard on Tuesdays and Thursdays to adapt our game to meet that challenge but our back-line again didn’t function.

Wes Moore takes on the Datchworth defence in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOOWes Moore takes on the Datchworth defence in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“The forwards were working hard but all they can do is deliver the ball to the backs and hope they do some magic.

Nick Moore grapples with Michael Wilson in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOONick Moore grapples with Michael Wilson in the match between Stevenage Town v Datchworth. Picture: DANNY LOO

“But the magic has not been there.”

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