Deadliest ever strike partnership set to be reunited
It looks like Rugby Town’s deadliest ever strike partnership will be back in tandem again, after the club announced that both David Kolodynski and Seb Lake-Gaskin have committed themselves to lining up in Valley colours next season, writes Jon Venner.
Rugby’s record goalscorer Kolodynski has verbally agreed to a return to Butlin Road after having left for Town’s then divisional compatriots Kettering last November, whilst Lake-Gaskin has signed a one-year extension to his contract to keep him at the club until May 2016.
The capture and retention of the pair who have accounted for 152 goals in all competitions over the past three seasons alone will be a big boost for new Valley boss Gary Mills – who also announced his backroom team for the forthcoming campaign in the Northern Premier League South Division.
Mills has appointed Bedford Town manager Craig Adams as his assistant, with Brian Mapley following Adams from the New Eyrie as goalkeeping coach and Ben Beaumont coming in as the club’s new physiotherapist.
Kolodynski’s return comes after he was part of the Kettering squad that secured the Southern League Central Division title, although the ace marksman struggled to hit the impressive scoring form that he had enjoyed in his two spells at Butlin Road – which saw him smash a number of records, including Danny Conway’s longstanding all-time senior goals tally.
It had been expected that Lake-Gaskin’s second half substitute appearance in Town’s final game of the 2014/15 campaign against Royston would be his last for now, but the 24 year old has decided to stay at the club and will be looking to be back to his best under the new regime after struggling last season with an ankle injury and a subsequent loss of form.
The reuniting of Kolodynski and Lake-Gaskin comes a week after the club announced that five key members of last season’s squad – Neil Collett, Craig Kelly, Mason Rowley, Lewis McBride and Lewis Rankin - would also be returning.
New assistant manager Adams was in charge of the Eagles for 14 months, having previously managed UCL side Wellingborough for a similar length of time. He played twice for Northampton Town in the Football League as a young player in the early 1990’s, before injury saw him move into the non-league game.
Coach Mapley played in goal for Scarborough and was also with Adams at Wellingborough, whilst Beaumont takes up his first physio post in non-league football after recently qualifying. Mick Bird will remain as the first team kit man.
Town have also announced a provisional pre-season schedule, which sees three games lined-up on the Butlin Road main pitch against Conference North Solihull Moors, Southern League Premier King’s Lynn and a Northampton Town XI.
Rugby are also due to travel to UCL side Cogenhoe and another Southern League Premier outfit Stratford – who were promoted from the South & West Division at the end of last season.
A couple of further games have also been arranged on the Butlin Road astroturf facility, and there is currently a blank Saturday to be filled on August 8 ahead of the kick-off of the new NPL campaign the following weekend.
Full (provisional) list of pre-season fixtures:
Saturday 4th July: (H) Rugby Town Youth Team (astro pitch)
Saturday 11th July: (A) Cogenhoe United
Tuesday 14th July: (H) Shepshed Dynamo (astro pitch)
Saturday 25th July: (H) Solihull Moors
Tuesday 28th July: (A) Stratford Town
Saturday 1st August: (H) King’s Lynn
Wednesday 5th August: (H) Northampton Town XI