Sam Masters: I madea big mistake when leaving Edinburgh Monarchs
Sam Masters says he should never have left the five time league Championship winners Edinburgh Monarchs.
The 28-year-old Australian is gearing up for his second Armadale ‘debut’ against old adversaries Somerset Rebels tonight after re-signing for the team, and he is keen to give some much-needed guidance to a Monarchs squad which has been in free-fall recently.
Along with new signing Matt Marson, a revamped Monarchs squad must rediscover the secret to winning again - but Somerset won’t be easy opponents.
Masters’ return to Monarchs was something of an open secret to those in the know and the rider himself has no doubts in his own mind that he has made the correct decision at this stage of his racing career.
And the Australian got off to a dream start with a unbeaten five-ride 15-point maximum at Leicester Lions on Wednesday which earned Edinburgh a rare away match point.
Said Masters: “It felt fantastic to race for Edinburgh once more, and to score a maximum was great from a personal point of view.
“It was about time I rejoined Edinburgh, I never really thought it would actually come off and it was so difficult for Edinburgh to make it happen and organise it all.
“Thinking back I never really should have left Monarchs, and it became a huge regret to me.
“But I wanted to see what I could achieve by racing overseas in places like Poland and Sweden, that’s why I dropped out of the Championship division back in 2017. “I honestly didn’t think that by turning my back on the Championship it would make life so hard to get back in.”
Masters’ fondness for the Edinburgh club knows no bounds and he went on: “I never wanted to ride for any other Championship team except Edinburgh and it is hoped I can stay with Edinburgh beyond this season.
“We now have a strong top four so we’ll see how it goes. We are going all out for it now as we almost proved at Leicester, do not worry about that.”
Monarchs co-boss John Campbell praised Masters’ efforts at Leicester, saying: ”What a difference it made to have someone you think can win every race.
“It gave everybody a lift, Sam was majestic. I thought we would actually win the match at one stage, but the track dried up and the home riders got dialled in.
“Everybody battled hard and to come away with a match point from the league leaders... I can’t complain about that.
“People have written us off before but there are still plenty of meetings left to run and we can use the Leicester result as a springboard to try and reach the play-offs.”