After a turbulent first season back in the big time, Chris York admits he feels refreshed from a summer break as Dean Richards prepares his charges for a second successive term in the Aviva Premiership.
York, 24, and fellow teammates Richard Mayhew, Warren Fury and Alex Tait enjoyed a break in Las Vegas immediately after last season, before the contrasting surroundings of Crete beckoned for the giant back-row on his return.
“I had a really good summer, and it was just what I needed after a difficult season,” said York.
He added: “Vegas was eventful to say the least, and then a couple of days after getting back to England I went to Crete with the family.
“I spent most of my time on a lilo chilling out in the sun, and it was nice to get away before getting back into it.
“It was nice to have the four weeks off because last year things were really hectic given we had one less week to recover.”
Despite achieving their ultimate goal of securing their top-flight name in the club’s first season back in the top tier, York believes his side deserved more from the campaign.
He said: “We finished 11th but we should have been further up the table and in my eyes we deserved a few more points from a number of games.
“I can’t remember the exact stat but there was something like 10 games where we finished within seven points of the other team. If we took other opportunities in those games, then we might have come out on top and have finished higher up the table.”
Champing at the bit to get a rigorous pre-season under his belt, it is fair to say that York has had a stop-start career since his arrival on Tyneside in the summer of 2012.
Smile on his face and exuding confidence, York said: “I’m just hoping to have a good pre-season and making sure that the coaches see how well I’m doing. Then, if I can get involved in the pre-season games and do well, hopefully I can lay down a marker for a regular starting place.”
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