Watford RFC clinched promotion from Herts/Middlesex Three on Saturday and captain Martin Lee says the players’ effort, commitment and determination throughout the season has been rewarded.
The club, who are celebrating their 40th anniversary, knew a home victory against Mill Hill on Saturday would seal their place in Herts/Middlesex Two with a game to spare.
Watford started strongly. Tom McGee converted a penalty and Greg Reeve crossed the whitewash soon after to put the hosts in command.
Paul Dunlop then scored a second try and McGee added the extras to put the home side 15-0 ahead at the break.
The second half continued in the same fashion as the first. Richard Yates went over on the hour mark and Reeve grabbed his second try soon after to round off an impressive 27-3 win and seal promotion.
“It’s been a brilliant season,” Lee said. “We’ve put a hell of a lot of work in across the season and the commitment from the players has been fantastic.
“It’s our 40th anniversary this year as a club, so to have achieved promotion is a great way to mark that.”
Watford missed out on promotion last season after finishing third. Lee said the players were determined not to suffer the same heartache this time around.
The 27-year-old explained: “Promotion is something we talked about at the start of the season.
“We’ve had a settled squad which has been together for the last couple of years. The team spirit amongst the players is great.
“We made a real effort to concentrate on the league this year. We train on Tuesdays and Thursdays and we’ve made sure everyone is getting down to training 80 to 90 per cent of the time.
“So we’ve had lads coming after they’ve worked in London or before they start a night shift. It’s been a real team effort and it is great that has been rewarded.”
Watford end their league campaign with a trip to Hatfield tomorrow (Saturday). With the club still in the hunt for the John Macfarlane Bowl – the award given to the Hertfordshire club with the best points ratio across the leagues – Lee said there is no chance of the side easing off.
The Watford captain, who joined the club at the age of five, is confident the players can step up and impress in Herts/Middlesex Two next season.
“You look at Feltham who got promoted last year and they have gone on to win the division at a canter,” he said.
“We were able to compete with them so that shows we can mix it with sides in that division.
“Hopefully we can add to the squad and I am sure players will want to come and join Watford because we are a club that is moving in the right direction.”