Cadishead Rhinos Paul Elliott

Cadishead Rhinos’ season was off to a flying start, four wins from their opening four games but it was all brought to a very abrupt standstill as the Coronavirus started to affect all of our lives.

Their league season was suspended indefinitely in March as sport in Salford like the rest of the world was put on pause, with a return date completely in the unknown.

As an amateur club, the financial situation for Cadishead Rhinos was a concern for head coach and club secretary Paul Elliot.

“The big thing from our point of view is the loss of revenue whilst the playing season is put on hold.”

However, Elliot was relatively optimistic about the clubs situation during this difficult financial time.

“I think we’ll be okay, we should still survive the period, we’ve had some government assistance from grants we’ve received on the back of that.”

In regards to how the players have been coping without any training or matches, Elliot said: “It’s hard to say because as a group you probably don’t get to speak to all of them in one go.

We’ve been trying to do as much on social media to keep people interested and I know the coach John Brooks has been running some online group sessions to try to keep fitness up as much as they can do.”

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Elliot was concerned about the long-term impact COVID-19 will have on the club despite coping in the short-term financially speaking and in regards to the players keeping relatively fit and busy.

“I think the club will almost certainly be affected because from a financial point of view there will be a massive loss in revenue whilst there’s no games and training going on.

“The clubhouse like any business is closed at the moment in a period where traditionally we would be very busy.”

“I think in terms of the long-term impact it’s difficult to say in this moment in time without knowing when we’ll be able to return and when we return will we return back to normality or will it be significant changes then as well.”

After last season’s promotion to the North West County Division 3 and an unbeaten start to the new campaign, Cadishead’s momentum has been put on hold but promotion is still the aim for Elliot when play resumes.

“I think the aim always was, we were promoted from division four to division three this season and the start to the campaign suggests that we will still be able to be very competitive within that division.

“At the start of the season we always set out the play-offs were a realistic goal and if that also means finishing in the top two, top three and pushing for promotion then we’d look at that as well.”

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Elliot continued to explain that his young side have started to make their home ground an intimidating place to go.

“We’ve got a collective group of players who have come through our youth setup and we’re still a young and close team as well.

I think when you look at the practices John’s put in place, the players have brought into that and they’ve gained some momentum.

Our home form was tremendous last season, we went a full season in the league unbeaten and when you make your home ground a fortress then teams start looking at us seriously and start to fear coming down to Cadishead.”

It’s too early to know exactly when Cadishead’s season will start back up but when it eventually does, they appear to be a team very much ready to push for a back to back promotion.

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