Raiders return for Pitchley

London Raiders have persuaded former Romford junior JJ Pitchley to return to a gold and blue jersey for the 2016/17 National League season.

Pitchley came up through the ranks at Rom Valley Way to represent the senior side, before enjoying a spell with rivals Bracknell.

And the forward is delighted to be back with his home-town club for the new campaign, saying: “I’m excited and happy to be back in gold and blue, it’s where it all began for me 17 years ago at Rom Valley Way and I can’t wait to get back in the new rink.

“I’ve been away from the Raiders for a few years now, gained some great experience from both playing in the States and in the EPL and it’s grown me and my game in so many positive ways.

“I’m home for good now and it’s time to start building for the future of the Raiders for when we get back in Romford. I’m a Romford boy through and through so I’m glad I can be a part of those plans moving forward and get the Raiders back to the glory days as I remember, hopefully back in the EPL!

“For now it’s about counting down the days until September and working hard to make sure I’m as ready as ever.

“It’s great to see a very strong side being put together for a title challenging year.”

Coach Alan Blyth was similarly pleased to bring Pitchley back into the ranks, adding: “JJ showed his intentions to return to the Raiders very early in the off season.

“His undeniable talent and eye for a goal always gives you a threat in the opposition zone and with his mature head on young shoulders will provide a role model for the younger supporters and players alike to aspire to.

“JJ will be a huge asset to the team this year. He’s another product of the junior system at Rom Valley Way who has travelled far and wide to help his game progress further.”

Raiders have also announced that goalie Ryan Bainborough is unable to return this season.

A statement said: “Ryan intends to pursue plans away from hockey and is unable to commit at this time. Due to injury the Raiders were unable to see Ryan’s full potential last season, but we wish him well and hope to be chatting with again in the future.”

Report courtesy of the Romford Recorder

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