Date: 22 August 2018

PGRFC have added experienced scrum half James Gough to the playing squad for the 2018/19 season. Gough 31, joins Hoppers from neighbours Kendal for whom he has made over 250 career appearances. James has also spent time with Wharfedale RUFC and has represented Cumbria.

For the 2017/18 county season, Gough (pictured above in action for the 1st XV against Caldy in pre-season) was appointed to the Cumbrian coaching team and oversaw their campaign in the County Championship Plate competition. He has also been captain of the Kendal club during a long career at the Mint Bridge.

Speaking on his move to Hoppers, James said “I am really looking forward to the challenge of playing National League rugby again. Arnie (Head Coach Paul Arnold) is trying to implement an attacking style of rugby which is a great style to be involved in as a player. I am looking forward to competing for the shirt with Squiz (scrum half Jake Squirrel) who had a great season last year and I was impressed watching him play. Hopefully we will push each other, and I can pass on my experience to help him too.

It’s always nice to see a few familiar faces when you step into a new dressing room and I have played a lot with Tom Davidson, so we are hoping we can both bring some experience to the squad.

It’s always hard leaving a club for whom you have made 250 appearances for, but I think Kendal will be in a good place with Tom Borthwick in charge and my old half back partner Weighters steering the ship. I hope they go well but my focus is now Hoppers and helping the squad to push on from last season”.

Head Coach Paul Arnold said “Goughy is someone I have known for a long time having played against him during his Kendal and Wharfedale days. He brings a wealth of experience to Hoppers with over 250 career appearances under his belt. He sees coming to Preston as a new challenge and one that will give his playing career longevity. He is a physical scrum half and will provide a different playing style to Squiz (scrum half Jake Squirrel). That gives me options in selection. With 5 on the bench in National 2 as opposed to 3 on the bench in the Northern Premier, we have the flexibility to have two scrum halves in each match day squad and the addition of James is therefore important”.

Welcome to Hoppers James!

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