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Newbury Blues head coach Paul Archer wants his players to use their time wisely

Blues' campaign was cut short due to the coronavirus outbreak and they were relegated from South West Premier

NEWBURY Blues head coach Paul Archer says preparations for the new season will not begin until the coronavirus situation become clearer.

Blues’ campaign was cut short, due to the coronavirus outbreak, and it’s not been confirmed if their new season in South West 1 will begin in September.

The club would have been in their off-season at the moment, so Archer believes there’s no need to rush measures.

He said: “It’s a weird period, but this would be off-season and it’d be the sort of time where I’d be encouraging boys to rest up and ensure they can be in a physical state to start again.

“The boys are in a place where they are having time away from rugby and it’s an opportunity for them to pursue other interests.

“We want them to come back mentally and physically prepared whenever that may happen.”

Archer has thought about possibilities when they eventually return to training, but is aware of certain measures that might be in place.

He said: “We’re looking at ideas for one-on-one work and I know some of the boys have started that, but equally we have to be very sensible with it.

“They have been good in regards to keeping in touch and ensuring that we have that team spirit, but I am trying not to prescribe too much.

“We don’t have any clarity as to when the new season will start and when we can start training as a group.

“If restrictions were lifted tomorrow, hypothetically, we’d still be looking to July before we start training.

“The best case scenario would be for everything to go back to normal and we can start pre-season in July and the season in September, but we don’t know if that will happen.”

Blues’ campaign was decided by points-per-game and as a result they were relegated from the South West Premier.

It was a mixed season for the side and the extra time off has given Archer and his side time to reflect on what happened.

He said: “We have had plenty of time to think about the season gone and what was good, what we can improve on and what we can do differently because that’s important.”

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