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Head coach Dave Smith is hoping his last season in charge of Diss does not end in London 1 North relegation




Time is ticking on Dave Smith’s tenure as Diss Rugby Club’s head coach, and he is hoping it does not end in relegation.

A summer of upheaval saw a number of key players depart Mackenders and as such the Blues have made a slow start to the new campaign.

Smith’s second-from-bottom side have endured seven straight London 1 North defeats – the latest being a 52-10 reverse at home against Southend Saxons last weekend – which has left them 10 points from safety.

Roydon, Norfolk. 08 September 2018 ..Rugby action from Diss RFC v North Walsham - Diss Manager Dave Smith..Picture by Mark Bullimore Photography. (5136618)
Roydon, Norfolk. 08 September 2018 ..Rugby action from Diss RFC v North Walsham - Diss Manager Dave Smith..Picture by Mark Bullimore Photography. (5136618)

A fight for survival looks to be on the cards over the coming months, but as Smith prepares to end his five-year association with the club at the end of the season, he is keen to depart on a positive note.

“Diss are in a bit of a cycle and everyone knows the position we are in,” he said.

“This is going to be my last season at the club, which I told everyone involved during the summer.

“I have helped to get the club promoted and then survive at this level last year, and I would like to do the same again this season.

“If we can do that then I would see the job as having been completed.

“I have been involved for around five years and it feels like the right time to move on.

“It is going to be tough because this is a strong league. We have lost a lot of players and have a few injuries, but there are some good young lads in the squad.

“They will benefit long-term from playing men’s rugby every week.

“There is still a long way to go. It is only November; you never know what will happen.”

While there was 42 points between Diss and their Essex visitors on Saturday, Smith has insisted that in reality the difference between the sides was much smaller.

“We did not use our territory well enough and if you do not win your line-out ball you are asking for trouble,” he added.

“But we also showed plenty of good moments and passed up some good chances.

“The Southend coaches said afterwards that was the best they have played all season, so it seems like we copped for them on a really good day.

“We gave it our best shot and that is all I can ask of the lads.”

Tomorrow Diss are on the road to London-based outfit H.A.C (2pm).

The visitors are going to be missing a handful of players for the trip, including Matt Richards.



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