JERSEY RFC head coach Myles Landick ‘felt what the lads go through’ following his second-half cameo last weekend.
The former Jersey Red was thrown into the fray during his side’s comprehensive 69-10 away victory at Basingstoke, through a combination of injuries and player unavailability.
‘My body can still feel it,’ said the prop, reflecting on his first competitive outing in seven years.
A shuffled Jersey pack meant an opportunity for 18-year-old Mac Galvin, who deputised for Euan Spencer after he was injured in the warm-up.
Galvin lined up with former Jersey Red Ross Kenwright, who made his Siam Cup debut before the teenager was born.
Landick said: ‘It was very encouraging to see how well the new faces did.
‘Mac had only played 20 minutes of any rugby this season and came in for the entire game and did fantastically well.
‘Harry [Bannister] was also brilliant in the first-half before he had to go off, so for me it bodes well how many of the fresh faces performed.’
Given Jersey’s demanding schedule this season, where they must wait until mid-December for a week off, the strength in depth of the side will prove vital.
However, with two bonus-point wins from two, boasting a huge point difference of +97 already, the outfit will be buoyed by the fact they have the personnel to excel at this level.
The head coach’s involvement in the action was not the only lasting memory of the weekend.
‘The occasion itself was very special for the guys,’ he said.
‘We have been accustomed to playing second teams, where the match day is somewhat understated. Basingstoke was completely different, whereby there was a pre-match lunch and full match programme on our history.
‘I think it really helped hit home that this season is different and presents a special opportunity for us.’
Despite the comprehensive nature of their opening pair of victories, Landick still sees plenty of room for improvement moving forward.
He said, ‘Overall I think we have to be a little disappointed with the tries conceded.
‘Watching the tape back, we were a little tight in our defense and if we were playing a more clinical side on the day, we may have found ourselves under more pressure.
‘We have to stop ball watching and having too many guys sucked into the play.
‘But to look at the bigger picture, our tackling was superb as it was in the opening game and to travel away and pile 69 points on a team with a much-changed squad is certainly pleasing.’
Jersey sit in second position of Counties 1 Hampshire London & SE Division, behind Eastleigh, who have played an additional game to the Caesareans.
Up next is seventh-placed Petersfield, who travel to St Peter this Saturday [KO 1.30pm].