English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

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English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by LondonTiger on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 10:34 am

So, The 8th (and for now final) Play-Offs for promotion to the Premiership will commence on the weekend of 29th April.

(1) London Irish face (4) Doncaster
(2) Yorkshire Carnegie face (3) Ealing Trailfinders

with teh matches to be held as followed:

Play off semi-final Leg 1 April 29
Play off semi-final Leg 2 May 6

Greene King IPA Championship Final Leg 1 Wednesday 17th May: Yorkshire Carnegie vs London Irish
Greene King IPA Championship Final Leg 2 Wednesday 24th May: London Irish vs Yorkshire Carnegie



London Irish and LeedsYorkshire choose the order of their semi-finals, with the highest ranked finalist choosing the order of the final matches. Although the four semi-finalists were already known before this recent round of matches - with only the placing of 3rd and 4th still open - LI will have been pleased that Jersey, who have beaten them twice in recent weeks,  were unable to sneak into the 4th spot (in the end losing out to Doncaster on number of wins).

It is interesting that the final round of matches featured the same match-ups we shall see in the semi finals, with Yorkshire beating visitors Ealing, and LI securing an away win at Doncaster. However all sides know that the scoreboards are reset in a fortnight and it is all to play for. It seems farcical that LI could finish 33 points ahead of Doncaster, yet still lose out to them. Not many will mourn the passing of this ludicrous play-off system.

Full fixtures will be updated when known.


Last edited by LondonTiger on Mon 08 May 2017, 12:12 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Updated with final dates)

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 11:38 am

Our semi final fixtures are...

30th April - 3pm
Doncaster Knights vs. London Irish @ Castle Park

6th May - 1.15pm
London Irish vs. Doncaster Knights @ Madejski Stadium


Not sure which way round the Carnegie vs Ealing fixtures will be.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Fuzzy Dunlop on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 12:23 pm

Really want Yorkshire to win but I've never been a fan of play-offs for either league so I generally always root for whoever topped the league, after Tigers. Given that it's the last season that the play-off farce is in effect I suppose I can go ahead and cheer for Carnegie without feeling too dirty.

Irish should simply have too much for the other teams though, the scoreline against Yorkshire in Headingley looked reasonably tight but Yorkshire threw everything at Irish and the NotNots were able to stroll to victory without ever really needing to get out of second gear.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Smudge21 on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 12:46 pm

As an Irish fan I'm feeling nervous about the dreaded play offs but am quite confident. We've shown this season that if we turn up and play to our potential, we're far too strong for anyone. However anything can happen! Although Ealing lost to Yorkshire yesterday, I expect them to prove very tough opponents and wouldnt be suprised if they got through to the final

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by LondonTiger on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 1:12 pm

Are Ealing in a position to be promoted should they win the play-offs?

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 1:17 pm

Not sure LT.

The sad thing is that if Carnegie, Doncaster or Jersey go up they will come straight back down and may not even win a game. Even if we go up there's every chance of us yo-yoing for a couple of years as the gap is vast and the play offs only make it bigger.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by SirBurger on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 1:48 pm

Ealing are the team I fear most so I hope Yorkshire beat them. We beat Yorkshire by a margin of about 25-30 points over the two games this season and I would fully expect a similar result. They are a poor side. The only thing that will stop us is the pressure getting to us and I'm sorry if that sounds like arrogance, but it is true.

However, the chasm between the Prem and the Champ continues to get bigger and I do think we would be favourites to come back down unless we sign a couple of stars.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 6:08 pm

Ealing are tough to beat at their place with their game suiting their plastic pitch. If we do end up facing them in the final we at least have a 4G pitch at Hazelwood to practice on in the lead up.

Our results against our play off rivals are...

London Irish 19 Doncaster Knights 0
Doncaster Knights 5 London Irish 22 (Agg 41-5)

London Irish 32 Ealing Trailfinders 12
Ealing Trailfinders 22 London Irish 23 (Agg 55-37)

London Irish 41 Yorkshire Carnegie 17
Yorkshire 14 London Irish 20 (Agg 61-31)

The reality is that we roughly 20 points better than each of them at home. If you go into the games in detail Ealing scored an 80th minute try at our place after the game was gone, Doncaster have scored 1 try in 160 minutes of rugby against us and that was in the 80th minute yesterday after we'd played 65 to 70 minutes down to 14, 70-75 down to 13 and then back up to 14 the final 5. Carnegie scored an intercept try off a telegraphed pass from Gerard Ellis and an 84th minute consolation try at our place, then as Fuzzy as said threw the kitchen sink at us at their place and only got a losing bonus point courtesy of a 79th minute try.

We SHOULD, if we play as we can, be comfortable and be playing Premiership rugby next season, but in all honesty I am bricking it, as we've seen it before where the favourites come a cropper.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by SirBurger on Sun 16 Apr 2017, 6:52 pm

Also bricking it and would be very worried with one or two key injuries.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Heaf on Mon 17 Apr 2017, 10:24 am

It'll be an absolute travesty if LI don't get promoted - I really struggle to work out what they were thinking when they invented this system.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by LondonTiger on Mon 17 Apr 2017, 11:11 am

Extra matches, extra income.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon 17 Apr 2017, 11:20 am

And most years no one would have anything to play for after Christmas.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Irish Londoner on Mon 17 Apr 2017, 10:27 pm

Personally I think it's about time they did away with promotion altogether, apart from Leeds no other side has a chance of sustaining a premiership campaign apart from the relegated side - move up LI and Leeds, leave Bristol up there and go to a 14 team Premiership ringfenced for three to five years and let the Championship clubs work on a pro/semi pro basis.
The alternative is a Nigel Wray based future of three to four rich clubs rotating the title and European rugby around them as in soccer.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by TrailApe on Tue 18 Apr 2017, 10:39 am

Good Luck Irish - I remember the Falcons play offs - there were a few wobbly moments!

It's a good thing to get rid of the play-offs, they were always a bit of a lottery, especially if a team had access to a few good dual registration players to bolster the end campaign.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 11:35 am

Cheers TrialApe.

Irish have just published an injury update and only player who would be likely to feature in our best XV who is unavailable due to injure is Johnny Williams, so we are in pretty good shape going into the weekend.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 12:15 pm

Ealing Trailfinders v Yorkshire Carnegie, Play-Off Semifinals, Vallis Way, 28 April, 7.45pm
1 James Gibbons
2 Alun Walker
3 Lewis Thiede
4 Barney Maddison
5 Glen Townson
6 Kieran Murphy
7 Rayn Smid
8 Mark Bright (captain)
9 Luke Carter
10 Rory Clegg
11 Phil Chesters
12 Joe Munro
13 Lewis Jones
14 Curtis Wilson
15 Will Harries
Reserves
16 Matt Cornish
17 Will Davis
18 Alex Penny
19 Llewelyn Jones
20 Arthur Ellis
21 Alex Walker
22 Aaron Penberthy

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 12:16 pm

And Leeds:

15. Chris Elder
14. Jonah Holmes
13. Andy Forsyth
12. Pete Lucock
11. Stevie McColl
10. Joe Ford
9. Alex Davies

1. Lewis Boyce
2. Phil Nilsen
3. Sione Faletau
4. Ben West
5. Matt Smith
6. Ollie Stedman
7. Richard Mayhew
8. Ryan Burrows (c)

16. Mike Mayhew
17. Matt Beesley
18. Mike Cusack
19. Mike Myerscough
20. Richard Beck
21. Max Green
22. Max Wright

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 12:26 pm

You beat me to it LT
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 12:32 pm

Ozzy3213 wrote:You beat me to it LT

You can do the teams announced tomorrow Very Happy

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 12:50 pm

Thanks mate. Yahoo

I think Ealing may well beat Yorkshire tomorrow night and put them under some serious pressure going into the second leg.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Welly on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 12:51 pm

Be interesting to see how Holmes and Ford get on.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 1:24 pm

Welly wrote: Be interesting to see how Holmes and Ford get on.

Have you guys signed them both Welly?
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 1:30 pm

https://www.drfc.co.uk/news/article/club-statement-minimum-standards-criteria-results

Doncaster will refuse promotion if they win the play offs.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 1:36 pm

While I'd quite like to see some prem rugby next season as I go to donny games it shows both the unfairness of the play offs hindering player recruitment and also the gap in funding. As I said earlier it'll inevitably lead to the 2nd tier being wrapped up by xmas so another step towards a sealed off prem.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 1:36 pm

Looks as if the London Welsh situation is having the effect of making clubs seriously consider whether promotion is worthwhile. Fair play to Doncaster and I think it is absolutely the right decision for them.

It does however make a bit of a mockery of the play offs when 50% of teams can't or won't accept the prize they are playing for. This may, rightly or wrongly hasten calls for an expanded ring-fenced Premiership with Irish and Yorkshire added to the present incumbents.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Welly on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 4:20 pm

Ozzy3213 wrote:
Welly wrote: Be interesting to see how Holmes and Ford get on.

Have you guys signed them both Welly?

From what i gather both are done.

Holmes pretty excited about he has potential IMO, should certainly be a good squad player.

Ford ermmm I suspect he would be signed as a LV/A league 10 so we don't have to risk say Toomua in those games. Ford/Toomua prem 10, Ford/Hardwick LV cup 10's. Could be wrong though.


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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 6:05 pm

Ozzy3213 wrote:
Welly wrote: Be interesting to see how Holmes and Ford get on.

Have you guys signed them both Welly?

Tigers have signed those two and Newcastle have signed the 8 Burrows. Looks like Carnegie are having a few pinched from them by AP teams this summer.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by SirBurger on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 6:15 pm

Carnegie are massively slashing their budget this summer.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 7:28 pm

Holmes is lively and could do well in the Prem, Ford for me is good Championship standard, nothing more.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 7:31 pm

Copied from The Craic

Greene King IPA Championship Dream Team 16/17
Posted by: kiwi02 (IP Logged)
Date: 27 April, 2017 18:42

Surprised only 4 members of the London Irish Squad made the team.
[www.englandrugby.com]

1. Prop – Lewis Boyce (Yorkshire Carnegie)
2. Hooker – Phil Nilsen (Yorkshire Carnegie)
3. Prop – Simon Kerrod (Jersey Reds)
4. Lock – Pierce Phillips (Jersey Reds)
5. Lock – Glen Young (Doncaster Knights]
6. Flanker – Jack Ram (Doncaster Knights]

7. Flanker – Blair Cowan (London Irish)
'Strong over the ball and in the tackle, Scotland capped Cowan has continued to play at international standard in the Championship and has weighed in with six league tries. He picked up five of the 11 votes cast.'

No. 8 – Ryan Burrows (Yorkshire Carnegie)

9. Scrum-half – Scott Steele (London Irish)
'Nuggety number nine with an eye for the gap who seems to get better with every passing season. Marginally preferred to Richmond’s Sam Stuart and Bedford’s Jordan Burns.'

10. Fly-half – James Marshall (London Irish)
'Outstanding ball player who has given Irish a real attacking edge this season. Astute decision-maker with the skill set to match, Marshall was nominated as the league’s best 10 by seven of the 11 coaches'

11. Wing – Jason Harries (London Scottish)
12. Centre – Joe Munro (Ealing Trailfinders)

13. Centre - Asaeli Tikoirotuma (London Irish)

'A game breaker and try scorer who makes things happen whilst in possession. Aled Jenkins, Andrew Bulumakau and Robbie Ferguson all had claims on the No.13 jersey too, but the Fijian international’s x-factor tipped the verdict his way.'

14. Wing – Jonah Holmes (Yorkshire Carnegie)
15. Full-back – Paul Jarvis (Doncaster Knights)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 27/04/2017 18:45 by kiwi02.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 27 Apr 2017, 9:01 pm

So of Yorkshire's four players in the team of the season they are retaining Nilsen the hooker only. Boyce is off to Quins. Ouch, they really are cutting costs.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by yappysnap on Fri 28 Apr 2017, 9:52 am

What's Boyce like anyone?

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by formerly known as Sam on Fri 28 Apr 2017, 10:02 am

No idea but he's young still despite playing a lot of rugby. Played England age grade and made team of the season. Should be a decent understudy to Marler with potential.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Fri 28 Apr 2017, 12:28 pm

London Irish: 15 Tommy Bell, 14 Alex Lewington, 13 Aseli Tikoirotuma*, 12 Fergus Mulchrone, 11 Joe Cokanasiga, 10 James Marshall, 9 Brendan McKibbin, 1 Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi, 2 David Paice*, 3 Ben Franks*, 4 Sebastian De Chaves, 5 Jebb Sinclair*, 6 Mike Coman, 7 Blair Cowan*, 8 Ofisa Treviranus*

Replacements: 16 Dave Porecki, 17 Tom Court*, 18 Ollie Hoskins, 19 George Robson, 20 Conor Gilsenan, 21 Scott Steele, 22 Greig Tonks*
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Fri 28 Apr 2017, 12:28 pm

Knights XV; 15) Paul Jarvis, 14) Dougie Flockhart, 13) Andy Bulumakau, 12) Lloyd Hayes, 11) Tyson Lewis, 10) Simon Humberstone, 9) Michael Heaney, 1) Richard List, 2) Ben Hunter, 3) Colin Quigley, 4) Matt Challinor, 5) Glen Young, 6) Alex Shaw, 7) Michael Hills, 8) Aaron Carpenter.



Replacements; 16) Jack Bergmanas, 17) Dave nelson, 18) WillGriff John, 19) Jarad Williams, 20) Mat Clark, 21) Sam Edgerley, 22) Dec Cusack.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Welly on Fri 28 Apr 2017, 8:12 pm

Really hope Holmes is done

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by formerly known as Sam on Sat 29 Apr 2017, 7:42 am

Welly wrote: Really hope Holmes is done

Two tries for him and Ford nailing all the conversions and a couple of penalties.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Sun 30 Apr 2017, 5:57 pm

Doncaster Knights 3 London Irish 35

So we ran in 6 tries, missed 5 conversions and won away by over 30 points against a team who have no interest in being promoted.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Heaf on Sun 30 Apr 2017, 6:05 pm

Who says these playoffs are stupid eh?

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 30 Apr 2017, 6:29 pm

First half was close. 2nd irish ran away with it. Given 2 out of the 4 sides in the playoffs are refusing promotion it'd just a matter of time to ring fencing by any other name anyway. Still doubt they will want to increase the number of sides in the prem so who misses out.having leeds makes geographical sense.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by SirBurger on Sun 30 Apr 2017, 7:01 pm

Fantastic performance today. Really gave them absolutely nothing and focused for the full 80 minutes which hasn't always been the case this season. Some great performances. I thought the midfield trio of Marshall-Mulchrone-Tikoirotuma was fantastic and in the pack Coman really set the tone with some monstrous defensive hits. Him, Cowan and Franks between them ensured that Doncaster never got over the gain line. The other forwards were very good too and Treviranus had one of his better games as a ball-carrier this season. Scary thing for Doncaster and Yorkshire, who we will presumably meet in the final, is that Bell left ten points out on the paddock today and our two exciting wingers were, by their standards, very average (Lewi's great try aside).

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by BigGee on Sun 30 Apr 2017, 8:47 pm

It will be a very good job when this bonkers play off system is finally put to bed.

As 2 of the 4 teams have already opted out of promotion, it is even dafter than usual. They may as well just go straight to the Yorkshire v London Irish match now. If Ealing and Doncaster had any motivation before the first game, they will certainly have lost it now.

I watched the match this afternoon and it was men against boys really. The Irish squad is so much stronger than any other one in the league it is hard to see how they could not go back up and it will be the same for Bristol next year. The difference in their budget and other teams in the league is just chalk and cheese.

Keeping relegation and promotion in the top English leagues is very admirable but when you see how it is working in practice you do question the point in it.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Fuzzy Dunlop on Sun 30 Apr 2017, 9:37 pm

I can't see motivation being too much of an issue. If they are motivated by loyalty to their clubs they must be aware that they are competing for the parachute payment that would otherwise be paid to the relegated AP club which could be huge for their growth. If not that then on a personal level winning the playoffs will put them in a good position to be picked up by Premiership clubs.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 02 May 2017, 10:40 am

Ealing and Doncaster saying they would not accept promotion is a complete mockery.

Thank god its scrapped next season!

On a different subject.

Nice to see our young lock Glen Young in the team of the season and new signing Ryan Burrows from Leeds also in the side. With Aly Hogg taking over as Manager of Blaydon , Burrows has a big part to play.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Wed 03 May 2017, 5:40 pm

Burrows is a good player who I am surprised hasn't made the step up to the Premiership sooner.

It will be interesting this weekend to see how the games pan out. Doncaster and Ealing have little play for, away from home, down 32 and 18 points respectively and without the carrot of promotion, but that could see them just throw off the shackles and give it a lash. Ultimately I would expect us and Carnegie to win the games and the ties overall, but it could be an entertaining watch.

As a side note, should the unthinkable happen and my beloved London Irish don't make it, with Carnegie going up at our expense, it is impossible to see how they will win a game next season. They have released all of their best players to clubs in the Premiership already, their coach is off at the end of the season and they have no money.

It really is a ridiculous situation in the Championship at the moment.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Welly on Wed 03 May 2017, 7:26 pm

Yorkshire Carnegie confirm departures: Joe Ford, Oli Goss, Jonah Holmes, Rob O’Donnell, Dan Sanderson, Andy Saull,Warren Seals; Chris Walker

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by formerly known as Sam on Wed 03 May 2017, 7:33 pm

Have they mentioned where Andy Saull is going? He seemed to have the potential to play internationally at one point. Somewhat fallen from grace.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 04 May 2017, 9:31 am

I can't see any mention of Saull's destination fkaS.

I've just been looking over some of the season's stats, mainly attendances, and the Championship appears to really be struggling as a product.
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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 04 May 2017, 9:51 am

Ozzy, it'd hard to sell something with such limited resources. The RFU have been very stingy with the Championship budget leaving clubs underfunded but forced to be fully professional. The games are virtually never televised which limits any exposure for clubs that haven't previously been in the AP.

Something needs to be done because the Championship clubs provide very useful academies and if we start losing those then we risk losing good quality young players coming through. Hopefully BT bid for the Championship viewing rights and bring them into the AP package, televise a game a week and discuss the goings on in Rugby Tonight.

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

Post by GeordieFalcon on Thu 04 May 2017, 9:51 am

Andy Saull is a frustration.

He seemed to be a big star in the making when he came on the scene...but just hasn't made it.

How often have we said that over the years!

GeordieFalcon

Posts : 18938
Join date : 2011-03-31
Location : Newcastle

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Re: English Championship (tier 2) - Play-Offs

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