Season 2009/10

Well that’s it another Rugby season over and now left with a few months with nothing to do apart from reminisce over last season and dream about what may happen this coming season…..

A quick summary of what has happened in Rugby this season; The Premiership was roughly the same as usual with Leicester Tigers winning the grand final on Saturday at Twickenham…. Saracens where the runners up this season and they made the early ground at the start but dropped off in the middle of the season and gave way to Northampton Saints who finished strong, but Saracens finished on a strong note too with back to back wins away from home at Saints and Tigers…To make it to the final against Leicester Tigers….The final was a tight game with the lead changing times several times before the Tigers eventually went on to win the game and the title for the second year in a row…At the bottom that was another story with the bottom place changing hands all the time which in the end saw Worcester Warriors relegated to the Championship but it could have easily been Leeds of Sale who made the drop instead. Midway through the season Warriors looked safe and as a result of this signed a number of highly rated players including England fly half Andy Goode as they felt they had done enough to avoid the drop…

Europe was a season for the French clubs in the Heineken cup with the final played between Biarritz 19 – 21 Toulouse with the Northampton Saints being the only English club to reach the quarter finals and in the Amlin cup we saw Cardiff Blues beat Toulon 28 – 21, and the famous Jonny Wilkinson pick up an injury. With Northampton Saints winning the Anglo Welsh cup…

The six nations was the usual some old same old from England with a great performance that saw them loose to the eventual winners France, but after a good win in the first game against Wales things just didn’t go for England and they finished third one place lower than the year before….

This year was the first season for the new Championship and it was a great success, well in my eyes apart from money troubles with London Welsh, Birmingham/Solihull and Coventry which in the end was the nail in the coffin for Coventry and saw them relegated to national division one. Now my Club Bedford Blues it was a good season apart from the usual late autumn early winter problems that saw us struggle but we went on to be beaten in the semi final for Exeter Chiefs the eventual winners and they gained promotion to the top flight for the first time in their history….I am still not sure about the championship being a professional league but I enjoyed the format this season and it was a great end of season format both for the promotion and relegation. Due to the money problems with some clubs I think its best that the championship stays as a semi professional league with most members of a squad full time but allowing for some part time players as well thus keeping the overheads done and allowing the clubs to thrive and not having another Birmingham or Coventry problem again. We do not need this 15 point deduction for going into administration after all this can’t be helped and what is the idea of kicking a team when they are already down and need all the help they can’t get….This did not help Coventry only served to put more pain on the club when they were already in a lot of pain….

Sunday 30th May saw the end of the season climax and England vs. Barbarians, think the RFU should look at ticket prices for this as there are only ever 40,000 fans at the game and there are plenty of spare seats….Tickets at half the price would fill the ground allow people to see England who could not normally afford to do so and the RFU would have a full ground on the same money they get for half a ground…..Just an idea that needs looking at that’s all. It was a good game and a good day and the bonus of getting to see a few players after the game for autographs etc which thrilled my daughter and she got to speak to the great man Martin Johnson himself….She is still on a high and was delighted that Lewis Moody remembered her from last season’s game and from visits to the Tigers as well….

One last moan the RFU and IRB have a vast reserve of money so why not spend some on the development of rugby in the Pacific Rim and Europe and develop a second tier for the six nations and the southern hemisphere tournament as well….There could be promotion and relegation and have 5 nations in the top group in Europe and then 5/6 in the second Tier and see the second tier spend the money wisely and improve their rugby and promote the game to a higher standard…and a new audience in Europe…..For the southern Hemisphere this would include the Pacific rim countries like Japan Korea Samoa etc and also Uruguay as well and this would do to improve the standard and the game too….This needs looking at and can be done at a quick pace and not a slow RFU/IRB old gits pace….If we want Rugby to be the number 1 sport we need to act now…..and I mean now….

Thank you for reading my blog…