Quartet to depart Hoppers as progress is made with recruitment

Date: 06 August 2023

Four of last season’s playing squad have decided to call time on their spell at Preston Grasshoppers over the summer.

Forwards Oga Mabaya, Dan Madden and Ben Dorrington are retiring, while Centre Harry Swarbrick has moved to Germany.

The quartet were part of a post-Christmas revival which saw Hoppers finish 11th and retain their status in Nation League Two North for another campaign.

Oga Mabaya

Zimbabwe-born prop Mabaya became a cult hero during his stay at Lightfoot Green Lane, with his debut season coming back in 2009/10 and has gone on to make 168 league appearances, scoring six tries.

Daniel Madden

After 140 outings making his debut during the 2012/12 campaign, versatile forward Madden has also chosen to hang up his boots; he crossed the whitewash six times throughout his Hoppers career.

Ben Dorrington

An ankle injury has forced Dorrington into early retirement after joining in the 2019/20 season, making 60 appearances, scoring 103 points with 20 tries and a penalty.

Harry Swarbrick

Swarbrick has moved to the continent to settle in Germany after joining during the 2021/22 campaign with 12 appearances to his name and touching down twice in his Hoppers career.

Hoppers would like to thank those moving on for their valuable contributions to the club and wish them all the best for the future.

Meanwhile, Dan Orwin and Alex Keay have worked hard to add new faces to the first-team squad ahead of the 2023/24 season.

The new signing announcements will be made towards the end of the month, with some exciting talent adding depth to the retained core of players from last season.

Director of Rugby Keay is pleased with the summer’s recruitment and the squad’s fitness levels as they undertake their pre-season preparation.

He said: “I’m very happy.

“We’ve trained very well, the boys have come back a lot fitter, so we are in a very good position.”

The first warm-up game is away against Rossendale on Saturday, 19th August, with the match kicking off at 3:00 PM.

Article written by Ben Pitkeathly, pictures by Mike Craig

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