HOOKER Richard Townsend is hoping to seal a new deal with Championship outfit Ealing Trailfinders, writes IAN MORGAN.
The former Hereford player is keeping his fingers crossed that basement-boys Ealing can avoid the drop.
“If Ealing get relegated I think they will keep things pretty much full-time next season and hopefully we could bounce straight back up,” said Townsend, now 24 years old.
“I am contracted until the end of this season and I am currently in talks with the club about a new contract.”
Ealing are at the foot of the table – eight points adrift of second-bottom Jersey.
He said: “We have Jersey at home and Bedford at home and Nottingham at home and our home form has not been great lately and that’s something we need to sort out. It’s going to be a tight finish.”
Townsend came up against another former Hereford player, Nick Scott, a few weeks ago when Ealing crashed 39-6 at home to London Welsh.
“I played against Nick Scott and he scored against us,” said Townsend, who watched Ledbury’s 25-10 home defeat last Saturday against Old Wheatleyans.
“It was very interesting because I hadn’t seen Nick for a long time. He’s still very impressive and very fast – he split us from about 50 metres out.”
Townsend, who hails from Bartestree, has represented England Students and played for Canada at the 2009 IRB World Championship in Japan.
He said: “I have played in about half of Ealing’s games this season and it’s been a good experience.
“I have to get as many games at this level under my belt before I can move any further.
“I am a hooker now and I changed from prop about three seasons ago. I am learning that position and it’s exciting.”
Townsend, a former Bishop of Hereford’s Bluecoat School pupil, lives in Ealing, just 100 metres from the rugby club.
“I had not been back to Hereford for about a year and this was the first weekend that I’ve had off in a long time so I came to watch a few friends who play for Ledbury.”