By Dragons Den
September 20 2016
After lasts season's success in The British and Irish Cup, the summer has seen some turbulent times at London Welsh, but have the club turned the corner?
Following on from a great end to last season on the pitch with London Welsh, clearly the form team in the latter stages, the summer months heralded some turbulent times.
Firstly the departure of Head Coach, Rowland Phillips, who left to take up a coaching role within the WRU, everyone at Dragon's Den wishes Rowland the very best of luck in his new post as Head Coach of the Welsh Women's side. Following that assistant coach James Buckland has stepped up into the role of Head Coach and we also wish James all the very best in his new position.
This was then rapidly followed by a winding up order in the High Court, which could have put the whole future of the club into jeopardy, but hot on the heels of that came an announcement that the club was to be taken over by an American investment company, who would be injecting a substantial amount of money into the club.
With that in mind on Monday night Bleddyn Phillips addressed a forum of supporters to inform of the buy-out of the club and the vision for the future.
He opened the meeting by firstly thanking Kelvin and Pat Bryon for all the support that they have given to the club over many years and acknowledged the fact that without that support the club would not have achieved the success it has in recent years. He also extended his best wishes to Pat and wished them all the best in dealing with her ongoing illness.
He then went on to explain that whilst the new investors had signed the share sales agreement, the deal had not quite been finalised, but should be complete within the next couple of weeks and that until such times the actual identity of the investors would not be revealed.
He did however reveal that their commitment should secure the clubs future for the next couple of years at least and that their interest in the club was both commercial and emotional and that they would be taking an active involvement in the club with two of the American investors, who have Welsh connections, both taking a seat on the board.
He did also emphasise the fact that the new investors were aware of the inclusivity of the London Welsh family and that all commercial development would bear that in mind.
From an on the pitch perspective he explained that it was the clubs long term intention to compete at the highest level and that whilst, in the medium to long term they would be looking at probably developing a ground away from Old Deer Park, that this would remain in the West London area.
He wrapped it all up by saying that he had personal confidence that the new investors were a good fit for the club and thought that there was a bright future ahead.
With regards to matters on the pitch it has been a mixed start to the season with a very dominant win over Scottish being sandwiched between two losses to Titans and Yorkshire Carnegie, both games where Welsh let good leads slip away, despite being for the most part the dominant team. It appears that these slip ups have been down to momentary lapses in concentration and game management and hopefully will be simple things to address an if so then there shouldn't be any reason why we shouldn't do very well this season. Some of our play on the pitch has been outstanding and when playing at our best I don't think there is a team in the league that we genuinely need to fear. Hopefully with the new investment will come some strengthening of the squad particularly in the areas we are light in numbers and hopefully with that will come more sustained success on the pitch.
With that we would like to wish James and the boys the best of luck for the remainder of the season and hope for another successful season ahead.