Chromasport United Counties League
Published 14th August 2012
....Counties League Division One against Thrapston Town on Saturday, 18th August at the Dog and Duck, Wellingborough The club will also be officially opening the new Peter De Banke Terrace, which sits behind the goal at the clubhouse end of the ground in honour of the late Peter De Banke, a former Rushden Town and Irthlingborough Diamonds stalwart. The ceremony will take place at 2.15pm and the ribbon will be cut by Peter’s wife Maureen. A large crowd is expected for the game, with 441 fans turning out to watch the Diamonds’ pre-season friendly match against a Peterborough United XI side in late July.
Manager Mark Starmer reflected on the pre-season campaign: “We have had a very good pre-season. We have used a lot of players and have whittled it down to a squad we are happy with. The squad is balanced and we have moved on a lot over the pre-season. “I pretty much know my starting eleven bar one or two players - we tried out another new player on Saturday at Lutterworth as we continued our build up for this fixture. “The team are really looking forward to the match, they have enjoyed the pre-season and have worked hard and done what I have asked of them. It will be great to get a decent crowd on Saturday.” Starmer says he has the utmost of respect for all the Diamonds opponents in the division this season” “It’s the way I have always been, I truly respect every team we play against, other people may not. I focus on what we do, and if we do it well we’ll be up there at the end of the season.” Chairman Ralph Burditt will be a very proud man as he watches the senior team run out for the first time in a competitive fixture: “I think it`s plain for everyone to see what a long way the club has come over the past year.
“We started with nothing and have built a fully functioning community football club and as part of that process have got some great, skilled, business-minded people on board who have worked tirelessly to get us where we are today.
“At times, the first competitive fixture seemed a long way off but I’m delighted that it’s finally come round and I can’t wait to stand on the terrace and roar on the lads with the other supporters.
“This is only the beginning for AFC Rushden & Diamonds and I know that we as a club have a very bright future ahead of us. Before we all start working towards that future though, I hope that everyone involved stops to savour the moment on Saturday as the team takes the pitch for the first time.
“I will certainly feel an immense sense of pride when they run out in their white, blue and red shirts and feel honored to have played a part in rescuing the team which I have supported since the age of eleven.
“Rushden & Diamonds is back and not only are we back, but this time we are stronger and more community-focused. Our club is proof that a football club is not defined by it players, by the ground at which it plays or the depth of the owners` pockets but in the hearts and minds of the supporters.”