Bury St Edmunds Rugby Club’s team-building plans have received a major boost with the news that number 9 Pierre Peres has agreed to return for next season.
Peres arrived at the turn of the year and his entrance led to an upturn in fortunes during the second half of the season.
Delighted director of rugby Gavin Hogg said: “Pierre agreeing to return is a big boost for everyone.
“He likes to play an open, expansive game and his style compliments the type of game which we like to play.
“Pierre and Will Affleck have formed a very good partnership in a very short space of time.
“We’ve only been able to share our ambitions with the players for next term in the last couple of weeks. We are hopeful that we will be able to keep the majority of our squad together.”
A couple of experienced forwards and backs are at the top of Hogg’s summer shopping list.
“It’s about adding a bit more quality to the good squad we already have,” said Hogg.
“We’d like to be in the position where we have our squad for next season finalised by the end of May.”
Hogg believes his side will be even better next season after a satisfying finish to their National League Two season.
A seventh-place finish was secured, despite a final-day 41-29 defeat at high-flying Bishops Stortford.
Four tries for Bury guaranteed them a point in the 83rd minute of a excellent match.
Hogg said: “It has been a very long season and a big test on our resources having to play so many games.
“A lot of people were looking in from the outside and doubting us as a playing group after our bad start to the year.
“It was perhaps the biggest test of my coaching career in the five years that I have been here. I had to find ways or remaining positive and motivating thr group of players.”
Although the home win over Clifton proved to be the turning point of Bury’s season, the home derby success against Cambridge was the playing highlight for Hogg.
“It was a fantastic spectacle and ranks up there as one of the best individual games during my five years at the club.”