Ipswich YM’s Suffolk Chadacre Cup final appearance against Sudbury can inspire club’s youth setup

Jeff Searle

Jeff Searle - Credit: Archant

Ipswich YM’s forthcoming appearance in the Suffolk Chadacre Cup final can provide inspiration for the club’s burgeoning youth set-up.

That is the view of head coach Jeff Searle who has guided YM to within 80 minutes of their first-ever victory in the competition.

Eastern Counties 1 side YM secured an away day against London 3 North side Sudbury, at the west Suffolk side’s Whittome Fields ground on March 29, and win or lose, Searle believes such an achievement can only keep the club heading in an upward curve.

YM boast 15 different teams, including a ladies’ Touch-Rugby side and age-group squads that go as down as far as under-six level.

Searle said: “It all rolls into one and my job is to ensure the youth system fits into the senior system.

“Success goes hand in hand and we have got good young players at the club who are winning things and we want them to aspire to those players in the second and first teams.

“The club’s director of Rugby Andrew Moore is allowing me to grow the club organically and while he and the committee want to win games and want to win a league, we won’t be going out and signing foreign players to do so, we want to do it with local lads.”

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YM reached the final thanks to a 34-14 semi-final victory against Mersea Island on Saturday, in a contest which doubled up as a league game.

In the league, YM sit fourth and well adrift of the leaders, West Norfolk so reaching the cup final keeps the campaign alive according to Searle.

“I’m really happy for the players because we are not going to be there or thereabouts in the league at the end of the season,” said the former Ipswich RUFC player.

“This cup run keeps them interested and makes sure they are still fighting for places.”

Ollie Howard and Harry Crush both grabbed a brace of tries, while Andrew Cooke and Carlton Ford also crossed the whitewash for Searle’s team, to set up a meeting with 15-time winners, Sudbury.

“The build-up to the game was different, you could see that in training,” the coach added.

“There was a little bit of attitude and, having spoken to them, the players wanted to take something out of the season. They realised that the semi-final was a big opportunity for them.”