EXPERIENCED campaigner Ian Voortman is relishing the expectancy of contributing to the Kendal cause while at the same time playing his part in the development of the club’s youngsters.

The South African-born centre signed for the Black and Ambers in 1997 before moving to Sedgley Park six years later and establishing himself as a mainstay of their National One backline.

Having racked up more miles on the Mint Bridge clock since his return, Voortman now views his role in the side to be wider than it has been previously.

“The position I play at 12 means part of my job is to lead the defence and I spend a lot of time talking and organising,” he said.

“I have always enjoyed tackling and you try and help the younger guys and get them to understand their roles in the structure of the team.

“You try and be as valuable to the team as you can. I’ve just turned 40 so physically my ability has gone downhill so you try and make up for that by using experience and being an asset that way.

“Personally, I don’t feel I have been massively consistent this season – I’ve played some good games and then some not so good games.

“But it’s rewarding when you see young players starting to perform and I enjoy that side of things.”

Victory against Wigton combined with Kirkby Lonsdale’s defeat of closest-rivals Widnes saw Kendal steal a march in the race for third place in North One West.

Widnes have the easier run-in on paper with games against Leigh and Liverpool St. Helens whereas Kendal face Wilmslow and Wirral, although Voortman insists nothing can be taken for granted.

“The season’s been a bit disjointed really, there have been times where I really thought we could kick on and put a nice long run together but then we’ve had an important fixture and not performed,” he added.

“If we’d won games we should have then we’d be pushing the top two a lot harder but then it’s debatable whether moving up a league at this stage in our development would be a good thing.

“Going forward it’s hard to say who has the better fixtures as we have struggled against Cumbrian teams lower than us in the league while there are always sides fighting for their survival.”