By Jamie Arrowsmith 25/07 Updated: 01/08 12:12
RUGBY Town favourite Craig Herbert is returning to the club as Dave Stringer’s assistant, following last week’s departure of Martin Sockett.
The decision for Sockett to go was agreed by all parties after it was decided that a conflict of interest, caused by him managing a Sunday League team elsewhere in the Midlands, was an unworkable one.
Sockett’s first two spells at the club had been as manager from 1998-2001 and then again in 2010-11, and having departed just over a year ago to take over the reins at Redditch, he quickly returned as Stringer’s number two last September.
Chairman Brian Melvin thanked him for his contributions and also outlined the reasoning behind the split.
“Martin’s input last season was extremely valuable and nearly helped us to that promotion we all want at the club,” he said.
“However, the Board of Directors firmly believe that if we are to achieve that goal this season, then everyone’s priority and focus needs to be on Southern League football. We discussed this with Martin and we all agreed that in the situation it was best that we part company.”
Herbert’s return to Butlin Road comes after a two and a half year absence from Town. He is Rugby’s second highest appearance maker with over 300, after featuring in ten consecutive seasons from 2000 to 2010.
“Herbs is a Valley man through and through, and getting him here is a great boost ahead of the new season,” Melvin added.
“He has plenty of experience and knowledge of the non-league scene and has played professionally before that too. I’m sure that Dave (Stringer), Danny (Hall) and him can form a strong and successful management team.”
Meanwhile, on the pitch, Valley recorded back-to-back 2-1 victories, after getting their first outings on grass in their warm-up schedule over the past week against Racing Club Warwick and Heather St. John respectively.
Goals from Seb Hamilton and Michael Williams at Warwick gave Town a two goal lead at Warwick on Saturday before they conceded in the second period.
The scoring pattern was the same on Tuesday evening against Heather, with Hamilton again on-target and Seb Lake-Gaskin also notching in the first half. The Leicestershire side’s consolation came on the hour mark, but Rugby held on for the win.
Rugby were still without the services of striker Tyrone Fagan who has yet to appear pre-season due to a holiday and then a family bereavement. Recent signing Rob Foster also missed Tuesday’s trip to Heather St. John with an achilles injury.
Last season’s prolific scoring youth team striker Nic Evangelinos made appearances from the bench in both games, and there was also an appearances from ex-Coventry Sphinx midfielder Josh Ruff on Tuesday, as boss Dave Stringer looks to make the final adjustments to his squad for the 2012-13 campaign.
Tonight’s (Thursday) friendly against S&L Corby on the Butlin Road astroturf has been cancelled so next up for Town is the visit of Southern League Premier Division side Banbury on Saturday. Conference North outfit Corby visit on Tuesday with both games due to take place on the main Butlin Road pitch.
Admission for both friendlies will be £5 per adult and £3 per concession, with Saturday’s game kicking off at 3pm and Tuesday’s at 7.45pm.
Rugby Town 0 Brackley Town 4 RUGBY'S run
MICHAEL Schutte has no doubt his new club
THE RAIN which has so often been the
IT WAS a frustrating weekend for Rugby Cricket
CAL Crutchlow produced the greatest ride of his short MotoGP ...
BLYTHE Barracudas secured victory in the second round of the ...
Lye Town 2 Southam United 1 HAVING been given a ...