SANDBACH Rugby Club are gearing up for the start of the new season with a different skipper leading the charge.
Tim Oakes has taken over as first-team captain from Ray Jones and is aiming to improve on last season's mid-table finish in the South Lancs and Cheshire League Division One.
The Bradwall Road club have performed well in warm-up games with Whitchurch, Sale FC and Winnington Park, and travel to face promoted Oldershaw on Saturday.
A club spokesman said: 'Tim is certainly raring for the season to start. Under the leadership of Ray Jones, he
believed that last season was a very successful one. Sandbach maintained a good league position and always responded well under pressure, which Tim will endeavour to continue this season.
'Tim's key objectives for the season are to maintain high training numbers, to keep a sound balance of youth and experience throughout the first-team squad and to win those close, hard-fought games with finesse and clean-cut clinical skill.'
Meanwhile, Martin Beecher, one of the club's most prolific points scorers last season, leads the second team into their first fixture, against Rossendale at home.
The third team, who will compete in the Fairclough League Five West, are also at home for their first league match against Carrington seconds. Richard Astles is captain.
Nick Brown continues to lead the fourth team as they join the Fairclough League for the first time. The outfit take on Manchester Spartans away at the weekend.
The senior colts entertain West Park at Bradwall Road on Sunday, while the junior colts have to wait a week before playing against Leigh.