Blues confirm departures
Eight players leaving Bedford
Last Updated: May 15, 2012 4:12pm
Dave Vincent: Has left Bedford Blues
Bedford Blues have confirmed that eight members of their squad will be leaving Goldington Road.
Sam Walsh, Nico Steenkamp, Sean Tomes, Sam Pailor, Billy Johnson, Jamie Lennard, Handre Schmidt and Dave Vincent will all be plying their trade elsewhere next season.
And Blues director of rugby Mike Rayer has praised the efforts of all of the players during their time at the club.
He told the club's official site: "We've enjoyed a fine season and everyone is disappointed to have fallen at the semi-final stage as we pushed for the Championship title.
"All of the players who are leaving us were an important part of the team that did so well this season but we have identified some areas that we need to change and unfortunately it means that we have to say goodbye to some familiar faces.
"On behalf of all the coaches, directors and the fans, I want to say a big thank you to all of the lads for their hard work and dedication during their time with us and we wish them all the best for the future."
Rayer has already seen 17 members of the squad that was only just edged out of the RFU Championship play-off semi-finals by London Welsh commit.
And he admits he is close to adding further to his squad.
"Looking ahead to next season I can confirm that we have identified four players who we are in negotiations with, 17 players have already re-signed, a couple more have agreed new deals in principle and we are waiting to hear back from a few more," he added.
"All-in-all things are looking very bright for the 2012/13 campaign and we will have more news shortly."