MK WOLVES’ debut rugby league season has been deemed a success, despite the team finishing bottom of the league.
Starting life in the East Regional Division – the fourth tier of English rugby league – the Emerson Valley-based side began the season with a 40-24 home defeat to Bedford Tigers before losing the reverse fixture 60-18 a week later.
Other than that humbling, Wolves have more than held their own in most games, going on to lose 34-26 to Bury Titans in their next outing after a decent showing.
However, the lowest point of the season followed in June when the club failed to raise teams for their away trips North Herts Crusaders, St. Ives Roosters and Bury, which all counted as defeats.
But after that low the only way was up for Wolves, and a thrilling 24-24 home draw with King’s Lynn Black Knights was followed by the club’s first ever competitive victory as they saw off league leaders St. Ives 38-24 a week later.
Their campaign closed with a 24-18 loss to King’s Lynn and 50-8 home drubbing by North Herts Crusaders, but after beating St. Ives – who went on to win the league with only two defeats all season – Wolves are able to take more positives than negatives, and can look forward to next year with renewed enthusiasm.
Wolves hope to follow in the footsteps of clubs like Northampton Rebels and Hemel Hempstead Stags in the future – two other relatively new clubs who suffered the same sort of debut season problems but have since gone on to establish themselves as successful clubs playing at a semi professional level.
The long term goal is also to attract more youngsters to the club through head coach Gareth Edwards, who works as a PE teacher at Stantonbury Campus.
But in the short term Wolves’ players will go back to their normal lives – with some getting ready for the new rugby union season – before getting back together early next year to do it all again.
Gradual improvement is the aim of the game, and if Wolves can go one better in 2013 by picking up two victories, then that season will probably be considered a success too.