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New Season and New Challenges for Lincoln University
The inevitable question is that after their Hawkins Cup and then their Hawkins Trophy success last season, how does the Lincoln University’s Division 1 side motivate itself this year?
“We’ve talked about that,” co-coach John Haggart (coaching again with Dave Perrin and Ben Blair) admits. “But it is a new season of course and roughly half of this season’s team are new to the side and so we have new objectives as a result.”
While Lincoln University has a few outsiders, most of their new players have come from the club’s Division 2 and Colts teams. “These boys obviously want to prove themselves in Division 1, which presents new challenges,” John says.
As well as the new players, Lincoln University need to incorporate players coming and going throughout the season, whether is through injury or representative duties. “Take a player like Jack Goodhue,” John says. “He is returning from injury and he will be available to us in the next few weeks but we may then lose him to representative teams, including Sevens.”
While last season was an exception, in the two seasons before that Lincoln University won the Hawkins Cup before being bundled out of the Hawkins Trophy. “Last season we had a strong motivation to go one step further and win the Hawkins Trophy. For us the focus is on the bigger picture and realising that success in the Hawkins Cup is not the end of the season.”
John says that Lincoln University’s preseason was “somewhat disjointed”. A couple of matches that were meant to be played didn’t eventuate, although the country students did play Otago University and High School Old Boys
John says that his squad, has no qualms about being the team to beat this season. “When you taste success you may become a target but that’s the challenge that we have in front of us. It excites us rather than scares us.”
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