NEW TORRINGTON coach Rob Palmer will ask only one of thing of his team this season – that they enjoy themselves.
Palmer has taken on a young squad following last season’s relegation from Tribute Devon One.
After winning only four league games – plus one by walkover – last season, Torrington should find Devon Two more to their liking.
But the size of the challenge facing them was shown on Saturday when they were unable to maintain a strong start to their RFU Junior Vase tie against Totnes and lost 41-6.
Palmer said: “We were disappointed, not so much with the fact we lost but the scoreline, which was a bit unkind.
“I’m quite philosophical about it. It was the first match the lads had played and we have got a very young squad, most of them are in their first or second year of adult rugby.
“Totnes were slightly older and wiser. They absorbed the pressure then struck back.
“There are no targets in terms of achievement (this season). We have one very clear target – we are going to enjoy ourselves.”
Palmer coached youth teams at Barnstaple where he was club chairman from May 2011 before stepping down in September last year.
“I miss Barnstaple and wish them all the very best for this season but my health comes first and I was doing too much,” said Palmer. “I have cut back on my commitments and am just focusing on coaching, which is what I enjoy.
“I have been invited into the club after a couple of difficult seasons. Adrian Avery, Rob Bewes and Chris Beer deserve a lot of credit for keeping the side going.
“They are a great bunch of lads and it’s a real privilege to coach them.”
Torrington had beaten Totnes in their last meeting – the Devon Junior Cup semi-final in April – but the South Devon side were the better prepared this time, having played three pre-season matches.
For the first 30 minutes, though, Torrington dominated. They got within touching distance of the line three times but the only score was a penalty kick by Sam Britton.
Totnes scored their first try 10 minutes before half time, then Torrington’s concentration slipped and the home side ran in two more to lead 19-3 at the break.
Torrington scored first again in the second half with another Britton penalty but they were disrupted by injuries to three players and Totnes scored three more tries.
Torrington begin their league season at home against Plymouth Argaum on Saturday.