2013 has been the club’s first ever season of professional rugby league, after evolving from the University of Gloucestershire BUCS (British Universities and Colleges Sport) 1st team.
Hepi says that their start of season optimism soon faded as they realised the toughness of the task in hand.
The former New Zealand Moari representative said, “We were full of optimism at the start of season, we thought we had a very strong team due to the fact that we had come off the back of winning the top BUCS title over teams such as Loughborough.
“However, it became apparent a few games in that we had over estimated the students and also under estimated how tough Championship One would be.
Hepi feels that the learning curve his side went through during this time has been vital to their continuing development.
“The players now know what Championship One is all about and that student life is very different to professional life.”
Another of the big reasons for the All Golds improvements have been the signings of more experienced players such as hooker Pat Smith.
“With the squad coming out of a period in which they took time to gel, our fortunes have now been transformed,” Hepi explained.
“We’re moving up the league after our first two wins and we are beginning to perform well for the full 80 minutes of a game rather than 20 or 40 minute periods like earlier in the season.
“We are a much improved team now and I expect us to do well in the final third of the season.
“It is important that we have a good end to 2013 as it means we will have a solid base to build from next season, and from there we can set aims for the future.”
Kingstone Press Cider has teamed up with LoveRugbyLeague to celebrate all things great about the rugby league Championships. For the rest of the season, ‘Championing the Championships’ campaign will put a weekly spotlight on each Championship and Championship 1 club to focus on their most memorable moments, look back at the clubs heroes and reward the loyal fans. Read more.