On Air Late Lunch Christy Dehaven & Howard Caine | 1:00pm - 3:00pm

Tough test for Ramsey in opening game

The 2011/12 season gets underway with a bang for Ramsey today (Saturday) when they entertain Ruskin Park at the Mooragh in South Lancashire/Cheshire Division 2. Ruskin just missed out on promotion last season, no thanks to a home defeat by Ramsey with just a couple of games to go. Ruskin Park are also notable for taking away Ramsey's unbeaten home record, which stretched to 25 matches before they came a calling last December.

There have been a few changes at the Mooragh during the close season. The most significant is probably the departure of skipper Will Keenan who has moved to Preston Grasshoppers to pursue a semi-professional rugby career. Davide Mazzone takes over as club captain with Fintan Cummins acting as his deputy. Additionally, Ramsey's most experienced league player, John F Watling, will be returning to his studies and will probably be unavailable for home matches. Another experienced forward, Chris Hancox, is off on a world tour.

Preseason training has reportedly been going well, with 40 players regularly attending. Ramsey will hope to get off to a solid early start and take advantage of the enthusiasm currently sweeping through the club. Kick off is at 1.30pm to allow Ruskin time to get their return flight.

Saturday's fixtures

South Lancs/Cheshire Division 2

Ramsey v Ruskin Park at Mooragh Park (1.30pm)
Ellesmere Port v Douglas at Ellesmere Port
Crewe & Nantwich v Vagabonds at Crewe

MRFU friendly matches

Castletown v Ramsey B v Emerging Nomads at Poulsom Park (2.15pm)
Douglas B v Vagabonds B v Southern Nomads at Ballafletcher (2.15pm)