Ballymena Rugby Club Head coach Andy Graham says a positive start in Division 1B will be vital for his side.
The Braidmen face their second season in Division 1B of the Ulster Bank All-Ireland League and their opening game in that competition will be a tough test against Harlequins.
“All sides will be stronger and it is just about making a good start. If we can get a good start then who knows where we can end up.
“It is a very tough opening game but we are looking forward to it.”
Graham is optimistic about the new season and said training is going as planned.
The Braidmen begin their competitive season with a tricky game against Ballynahinch in the Ulster Senior League and Graham told the Times that training for this game and the season ahead is going well.
He said: “It’s going very well we are starting to up the ante. The boys are working themselves very hard which is what you want to see.
“We are introducing a few new things, everyone thinks it’s just fitness but also it is about putting together the fundamentals. Explaining how you want them to play the game, which is often getting back to basics. It is introducing certain aspects of the game and putting these into place.
“The Ballynahinch game will also be a good test for us, every pre-season you are concerned you might not be ready but once the competitive games arrive everybody is usually in the same boat by then and they’re ready to go.”
“The players are reacting well to the challenges put in front of them. Everything is looking good for the season ahead.”