Nottingham Eye Championship Top 4

We start our season on Sunday at home to Bedford and they are a similar bunch to us.

Since we got promoted into the RFU Championship, they have always been up there near the top of the league.

They are a good club. They play attacking rugby, have a good ground and probably have the biggest following outside of clubs that come down from the Premiership.

They should be challenging for the top four again this season and we are hopeful that we can do the same.

We have not sat down, had a big meeting and said this is what we want to achieve this year.

But everyone knows that we have it in us to reach a semi-final.

We have improved game by game in pre-season and did well against in a 32-10 defeat by Leicester Tigers, especially in terms of our defence.

There will be a few players missing at the start of the campaign because prop Matt Parr and winger Andy Savage are injured and our huge Tongan No.8 Sione Kalamafoni is away at the World Cup. Have a look out for him. You cannot miss him!

Nic Rouse is a big signing for us though, coming back from Sale Sharks, and he will run the lineout. Sione will be massive for us when he gets back from Tongan duty and lads like Alex Lewington and Tim Streather have some serious gas in the backs.

Nottingham are in good shape and I think we will be battling with teams like Leeds, London Welsh, Bedford and Bristol if we are going to get into the top four.

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