Former Northampton Saints youngster Louis Martin signs for Bury St Edmunds from Ealing Trailfinders
Louis Martin is the second confirmed summer arrival at Bury St Edmunds.
Martin, who can play anywhere across the back three, has signed on at the GK IPA Haberden from RFU Championship outfit Ealing Trailfinders.
Once part of the Northampton Saints academy, Martin has been working his way back from an ankle injury and last term turned out for Brunel University, who have a partnership with Ealing.
The former St Joseph’s College (Ipswich) pupil is still short of full fitness, but Bury’s head coach and director of rugby Jacob Ford is hopeful he will be available for the second pre-season friendly at home against Darlington Mowden Park on August 20.
Ford said: “He’s working his way through some ligament damage in his ankle and he’s rightly taking that slowly, but we’re hopeful he could be ready for the second friendly.
“He’s been with the Saints, been at Ealing and played a decent level with Brunel but now he’s come back over this way and we’re delighted to have him with us.
“Louis is a little bit different to what we’ve already got. Our wingers are quite electric and physical, while Louis is young, energetic and is really keen to push on.”
Coming from a professional environment into a semi-professional set-up can be a tricky assignment.
At times the adjustment is too much for certain players, who end up losing their way and being unable to make their way back up the ladder.
However, Ford is confident Martin has the credentials to thrive in Suffolk.
“That experience in the under-16s and under-18s with the Saints sets you up well,” added Ford.
“But it can be difficult to adapt from a full time set-up to semi -professional one. At Bury it feels like it’s full-time because we do things properly, but some of the lads work and so for those dropping down it can take some adjusting.
“Our environment is a demanding one and the players that are most successful are the ones that adapt well.
“Louis can be anything he wants to be and I’m sure he could kick on to bigger and better things.”
With more confirmed incomings expected in the near future, Ford has also been busy off the pitch adding to his coaching line-up.
James Ingle played for Northampton Saints before injury cut short his playing career, and since then he has held a variety of coaching positions at professional, national and school level.
He will primarily be charged with the task of working with Bury’s forwards, having most recently been at Bishop’s Stortford.
“James has got a lot of experience and many areas of expertise,” said Ford.
“He played at a professional level and has done a lot of coaching in professional club’s youth set-ups, in the National League and also at a high level in school rugby.
“He’s exactly what we were looking for in terms of coaching.
“He’s young with a real hunger and desire to kick on and show what he’s all about.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing what he can produce with our forwards – it’s really exciting.”
With pre-season training now well under way, Ford and his players are working towards their first friendly of the summer.
On August 13 they will head down the A14 to lock horns with higher-league Cambridge before playing host to Darlington seven days later when it is hoped supporters will be able to catch a first glimpse of new signing Martin.
The last of three friendly encounters will be played on Saturday, August 27 at home against Bedford Athletic.