Survival is the aim after big step up in class for Chesterfield Hockey Club
Coach Christian Battye is targeting survival when Chesterfield Hockey Club’s new league season begins later this year.
The men’s first team will now be competing in the East Pennine Premier League following a revamp of the sports’ national league system.
It places them in Hockey’s fourth tier and facing a much higher level of competition.
Battye says it will be a tough challenge but one the club is relishing.
“It is a big step up in class and we are really looking forward to it,” he said. “It is pretty good to be at that level for a club our size. We have to carry on the good work we have done over the last few years in order to compete.
“We have got a good squad, we just need to do more of the same and perhaps add a few extra tactical dimensions.
“Survival will be the key aim and we will go into the season knowing what we need to do.”
The club are likely to take the first steps back to light training in mid April before embarking on a series of friendlies throughout the summer.
And Battye knows the club’s competitive players are raring to go after a frustrating winter, which saw the men’s first team play just three league matches.
“It has been tough for the top end players because we love competing and matches,” he said.
“We want to have that extra bite so we will be looking at friendlies with local clubs and then a normal pre-season in July/August.
“It is an exciting time for the club. We have made massive strides with the ladies side of the club and there was a real good atmosphere at the club.”
Junior sessions will likely be run this summer as the club look to get normal service back and running.