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Prem Playoffs - double Derby Weekender.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Fri 10 Jun 2022, 12:14 pm

First topic message reminder :

STARTING XV
15 Freddie Steward [54]
14 Harry Potter [39]
13 Matías Moroni [34]
12 Dan Kelly [42]
11 Guy Porter [43]
10 George Ford [127]
9 Ben Youngs [280]
1 Ellis Genge (c) [109]
2 Julián Montoya [25]
3 Dan Cole [288]
4 Harry Wells [154]
5 Calum Green [89]
6 Hanro Liebenberg (vc) [57]
7 Tommy Reffell [76]
8 Jasper Wiese [43]

REPLACEMENTS
16 Charlie Clare [50]
17 Nephi Leatigaga [66]
18 Joe Heyes [99]
19 Ollie Chessum [29]
20 George Martin [37]
21 Jack van Poortvliet [47]
22 Freddie Burns [101]
23 Nemani Nadolo [36]

NORTHAMPTON SAINTS XV: 15 Tommy Freeman, 14 Matt Proctor, 13 Fraser Dingwall, 12 Rory Hutchinson, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Alex Mitchell; 1 Emmanuel Iyogun, 2 Sam Matavesi, 3 Ehren Painter, 4 Alex Coles, 5 Api Ratuniyarawa, 6 Courtney Lawes, 7 Lewis Ludlam (c), 8 Juarno Augustus

Replacements: 16 Mike Haywood, 17 Alex Waller, 18 Oisín Heffernan, 19 David Ribbans, 20 Aaron Hinkley, 21 Tom James, 22 James Grayson, 23 Piers Francis

No Ashton and no Furbank the surprise selections/injuries. Steward Vs Freeman tees up a great match up between the young 15s.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 12 Jun 2022, 10:08 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Exactly. Skosan was awful and thus Leicester won.

Didn't he make a one on one try saving tackle on Potter?

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Post by Geordie Sun 12 Jun 2022, 11:10 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Exactly. Skosan was awful and thus Leicester won.

You dont know rhat he would have converted them all.

Besides...he didn't score them...that's the name of the game.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 13 Jun 2022, 7:19 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Exactly. Skosan was awful and thus Leicester won.

You dont know rhat he would have converted them all.

Besides...he didn't score them...that's the name of the game.
So what I said.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 13 Jun 2022, 7:47 am

https://www.reddit.com/r/rugbyunion/comments/vaq140/farrell_punching_marchant_whilst_both_on_the/

In the other semi final. TMO and assistant seem to have managed to miss punches on and from Farrell. No idea how Farrell got away with this one nor how Symons manages to leave blood coming from Farrell's head and no one notice.

Bet nobody gets cited though.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 13 Jun 2022, 7:51 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Exactly. Skosan was awful and thus Leicester won.

You dont know rhat he would have converted them all.

Besides...he didn't score them...that's the name of the game.

He'd have needed to convert two of them and Biggar to slot the conversion just to get Saints a one point lead. Then Saints were thoroughly on the ropes at the end where Tigers twice went for posts (once successfully), if we'd needed more points we could have kicked to the corner and I'm fairly confident we'd have scored. The stats show we made more clean breaks and broke more tackles and the bulk of that would have been from 50 mins onwards when we took control of the game.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 13 Jun 2022, 8:07 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:https://www.reddit.com/r/rugbyunion/comments/vaq140/farrell_punching_marchant_whilst_both_on_the/

In the other semi final. TMO and assistant seem to have managed to miss punches on and from Farrell. No idea how Farrell got away with this one nor how Symons manages to leave blood coming from Farrell's head and no one notice.

Bet nobody gets cited though.

I thought was going to be the scuffle where Farrell's cut opened up again; I too don't think they're going to be cited for that.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 13 Jun 2022, 8:08 am

Northampton will still be kicking themselves (or more accurately the left winger).

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 13 Jun 2022, 8:28 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Northampton will still be kicking themselves (or more accurately the left winger).

Or Boyd for picking two 10/12s on the bench instead of a player capable of playing in the back three.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 13 Jun 2022, 8:29 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:https://www.reddit.com/r/rugbyunion/comments/vaq140/farrell_punching_marchant_whilst_both_on_the/

In the other semi final. TMO and assistant seem to have managed to miss punches on and from Farrell. No idea how Farrell got away with this one nor how Symons manages to leave blood coming from Farrell's head and no one notice.

Bet nobody gets cited though.

I thought was going to be the scuffle where Farrell's cut opened up again; I too don't think they're going to be cited for that.

No but that's a pretty clear cut punch to Marchant who even appeals to the assistant. Shocking how they missed it.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 13 Jun 2022, 8:35 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Northampton will still be kicking themselves (or more accurately the left winger).

Or Boyd for picking two 10/12s on the bench instead of a player capable of playing in the back three.

There's always going to be a gap somewhere in the use of a bench though.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 13 Jun 2022, 9:05 am

Confirmed no citings.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 13 Jun 2022, 9:35 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Northampton will still be kicking themselves (or more accurately the left winger).

Or Boyd for picking two 10/12s on the bench instead of a player capable of playing in the back three.

There's always going to be a gap somewhere in the use of a bench though.

When you pick one that badly, yes. Of course the Saints bench was made for containment, go hard get a lead and hold on for the big Tigers push at the end. They just didn't convert early in the game to force Tigers to chase.

Not citings isn't a surprise but a couple of media outlets have picked up the Farrell punch. Might see some questions being asked over the shambles that is the the citing system.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 13 Jun 2022, 9:37 am

Who would you have had on the bench for them?

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 13 Jun 2022, 10:04 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Who would you have had on the bench for them?

Collins or Sleightholme. Proctor on the right wing is entirely comfortable in the centres so they had cover for centre but not as much option for outwide without moving Hutchinson to 15 and Freeman to the wing. It's worth noting Saints had wind and sun first half so second half moving out the specialist 15 in the second half was a no go.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 13 Jun 2022, 10:10 am

Ah, fair enough, I just assumed both were injured as Slightholme hasn't been seen since the end of April and Collins, can't remember when he was last selected.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 13 Jun 2022, 10:30 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah, fair enough, I just assumed both were injured as Slightholme hasn't been seen since the end of April and Collins, can't remember when he was last selected.

I did check when Saints announced the side and neither were on the unavailable list like Furbank was for instance. Whether they weren't fully fit but then again Piers Francis was deemed fit enough and he's nearly always broken.

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Post by doctor_grey Mon 13 Jun 2022, 11:13 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah, fair enough, I just assumed both were injured as Slightholme hasn't been seen since the end of April and Collins, can't remember when he was last selected.

I did check when Saints announced the side and neither were on the unavailable list like Furbank was for instance. Whether they weren't fully fit but then again Piers Francis was deemed fit enough and he's nearly always broken.
Sleightholme had a tough year with injuries and that has pushed him behind others.  Collins has always been behind Skosan, Proctor, and Freeman.  

It's interesting the impact Furbank's injury had on the game.  That pushed Freeman to 15, Proctor to 14, and most importantly, caused Saints to go to a 5:3 split on the bench instead of 6:2.  And when Biggar, Saints most important player, did go off injured, he had to be replaced by James Grayson instead of Furbank.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 14 Jun 2022, 7:56 am

doctor_grey wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Ah, fair enough, I just assumed both were injured as Slightholme hasn't been seen since the end of April and Collins, can't remember when he was last selected.

I did check when Saints announced the side and neither were on the unavailable list like Furbank was for instance. Whether they weren't fully fit but then again Piers Francis was deemed fit enough and he's nearly always broken.
Sleightholme had a tough year with injuries and that has pushed him behind others.  Collins has always been behind Skosan, Proctor, and Freeman.  

It's interesting the impact Furbank's injury had on the game.  That pushed Freeman to 15, Proctor to 14, and most importantly, caused Saints to go to a 5:3 split on the bench instead of 6:2.  And when Biggar, Saints most important player, did go off injured, he had to be replaced by James Grayson instead of Furbank.

The 6:2 bench might well have helped. I don't think you got close to the Tigers tryline after Porter made the last ditch tackle on Skosan on about 55 mins. Some fresh legs to run it back from the backfield with Ford having both wind and sun to barrage the Saints backs in the second half might have helped as well. A lot of the Saints starting players looked out on their feet towards the end.

From a Tigers POV we were very cautious, taking points rather than building pressure like we had all season. Even right at the death, I'd have liked to see us kick to the corner rather than just take an easy 3 and bury the game a little earlier.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 14 Jun 2022, 8:07 am

I don't think the 6 2 bench would have helped Skosan catch though.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 14 Jun 2022, 8:23 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:I don't think the 6 2 bench would have helped Skosan catch though.

No but having missed those chances it might have meant the final quarter of the game wasn't just Tigers slowly pull Saints apart and ensuring victory.

I and many other Tigers fans were pretty confident that as long as we were in touching distance on 50 mins we'd manage to get the win. Tigers stamina is top notch and Saints tend to fade.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 14 Jun 2022, 8:45 am

Well that's true enough, keep in touch and hope you take your chances. Was impressed tbf with Ford who had a horrendous first half and came back strongly.

Seen this on the Guardian, personally I'd welcome taking the final around England even every other year. Plenty of big stadia and hugely beneficial to the peeps who don't live down in the unfriendly South:

'The Premiership Rugby chief executive, Simon Massie-Taylor, believes England’s top flight must be “open-minded” about staging the final away from Twickenham as they seek to turn the showpiece event into a national sporting moment on a par with the Grand National.

Twickenham has held every Premiership final since the playoffs were introduced to determine the league’s winner in 2003 and will stage Saturday’s showdown between Saracens and Leicester. Under the terms of the Professional Game Agreement with the Rugby Football Union, Premiership Rugby is contractually obliged to stage its final at Twickenham but that deal is due to expire in 2024 with renegotiations set to begin this summer.

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Massie-Taylor has also revealed that Premiership Rugby is considering adopting a double-header model for its semi-finals, which would see both matches staged in the same stadium, citing the success of France’s Top 14, which will hold both fixtures in Nice this weekend. The Top 14 traditionally holds its final at the Stade de France but nearly 100,000 spectators watched Racing 92 beat Toulon in the 2016 final at Camp Nou in Barcelona while the 2024 final is set to be staged in Marseille.

“We’re contractually obliged to stage [the final] at Twickenham but I think we need to have an open mind going forward in the next PGA,” he said. “Should we be doing things like neutral semi-finals? Again, trying to [replicate] these bigger moments that certainly exist in other countries.

“I think we can do it and it’s not necessarily a case of, ‘everything is at Twickenham’. I think there’s a national footprint here and you need to think about the Brightons and the Leeds and various other areas. We just need to work out where the demand is and how quickly you can build it.”

Only 10,000 spectators were permitted to attend last season’s thrilling final between Harlequins and Exeter due to Covid restrictions but Twickenham is expected to be close to its 82,000 capacity on Saturday. The final will also be broadcast on terrestrial TV for the first time in its history following a landmark deal with ITV and Massie-Taylor believes the annual fixture can establish itself in the nation’s sporting landscape.

“The goal for the final is to try and make a national sporting moment, and I genuinely believe we can do it,” he said. “There are a few things in the calendar where we have that established moment, the Grand National and Wimbledon, and we know there’s 10 million rugby fans knocking around, plus all the genuine sports fans who get attracted to big moments. You’ve got 10 million [rugby] fans in the UK, 9 million are England fans and pretty much all of those will watch a game on ITV. Now it’s a pretty broad demographic of people.

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“It’s about trying to create that national sporting moment. And so we talk about the Super Bowl, but what’s our version of it and how do we make it famous? So that’s the goal. And so we think we’ve got a big opportunity to make a big step on 18 June.”'

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 14 Jun 2022, 9:19 am

Yeah the early disrupted backline and kicking into the wind did mean we didn't get much moving in the first half. From about minute 5 to minute 30 Saints had us on the ropes. Punched themselves out without landing a blow and two fairly easy trips to their 22 quickly coughed up 6 points. I was disappointed with the second 3 pointer, with half time closing in we should have kicked that back to the corner (we were 5m out and about 10m from the touchline at the time) and looked to squeeze Saints a bit having weathered the storm. Didn't and gave Saints one last attack from which Porter went to the bin and the squared things up.

Ford is very patient at 10, if it's not going his way he'll keep his head and not force things. Burns on the other hand not so much.

I'd be interesting to see the final move round the country, the semi finals not so much. Significantly reduces the reward for finishing in the top 2 if you then go to a neutral venue and the French model is different so there's still a noticeable advantage for finishing in the top 2 (more teams in playoffs). Is suspect this is just the Prem putting the boot into the RFU during negotiations as using Twickers is a big pay day for the RFU. The talk of Brighton and Leeds is BS frankly, you need at least 60k seats which means it stays in London (Wembley or Spurs if not Twickers) or it goes to Old Trafford.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 14 Jun 2022, 9:26 am

Neutral is better for the comp though and may encourage more rugby fans who don't tend to go to the finals rather than of either team in which I think is part of the point from reading it.

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Post by Irish Londoner Tue 14 Jun 2022, 10:02 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:Yeah the early disrupted backline and kicking into the wind did mean we didn't get much moving in the first half. From about minute 5 to minute 30 Saints had us on the ropes. Punched themselves out without landing a blow and two fairly easy trips to their 22 quickly coughed up 6 points. I was disappointed with the second 3 pointer, with half time closing in we should have kicked that back to the corner (we were 5m out and about 10m from the touchline at the time) and looked to squeeze Saints a bit having weathered the storm. Didn't and gave Saints one last attack from which Porter went to the bin and the squared things up.

Ford is very patient at 10, if it's not going his way he'll keep his head and not force things. Burns on the other hand not so much.

I'd be interesting to see the final move round the country, the semi finals not so much. Significantly reduces the reward for finishing in the top 2 if you then go to a neutral venue and the French model is different so there's still a noticeable advantage for finishing in the top 2 (more teams in playoffs). Is suspect this is just the Prem putting the boot into the RFU during negotiations as using Twickers is a big pay day for the RFU. The talk of Brighton and Leeds is BS frankly, you need at least 60k seats which means it stays in London (Wembley or Spurs if not Twickers) or it goes to Old Trafford.

Old Trafford? The RL brigade up here will love that - "Union copying League again"..... Very Happy

Not sure if rugby putting extra money into football's coffers is that good an idea anyway. I can't imagine that it costs less to use Wembley or Spurs than Twickenham, also given that Twickenham is only allowed a certain number of events per year, won't they just put on an England/BaaBaas/exhibition game or a concert to make up the revenue anyway?

The neutral semi-final idea seems even more harebrained - where would the games be held? If it's Wembley or Spurs then it's not really a neutral venue if the semis are between Saracens and Northampton and what a nice trip for Exeter if they had to go Newcastle or Manchester. Do the the powers that be think that a double header semi-final is going to attract thousands of neutrals? From the point of view of the host stadiums (assuming it's a football ground - do they really want two full rugby games played on their pitch, unless PRL are going to pay for it to be relaid over the summer?

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 14 Jun 2022, 10:55 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Neutral is better for the comp though and may encourage more rugby fans who don't tend to go to the finals rather than of either team in which I think is part of the point from reading it.

Neutrals are going to be attracted to soulless football grounds for semi finals? Or are we going to use rival rugby grounds which could inadvertently favour a side and the PRL would have to spread around sufficiently to ensure the revenue boost gets shared by all.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 14 Jun 2022, 11:22 am

I have quite liked my trips to footy grounds tbh, don't know why you deem them soulless, or why they would need to be. I'd still say the point of moving the games is to give a fair balance to the semis, as there's no time to fit in another game and yes it will give better opportunity to people not normally attending games to go along, if advertised well. I don't think it's a bad idea at all.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 14 Jun 2022, 11:42 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:I have quite liked my trips to footy grounds tbh, don't know why you deem them soulless, or why they would need to be. I'd still say the point of moving the games is to give a fair balance to the semis, as there's no time to fit in another game and yes it will give better opportunity to people not normally attending games to go along, if advertised well. I don't think it's a bad idea at all.

I just find that football grounds, by necessity, require the stands to be further from the pitch. I feel more removed from the action. A lot of rugby grounds, particularly the older ones you don't even need to be at the front to hear some of the impacts because the stands are closer to the action. I've taken football fans to rugby grounds and generally they aren't rugby fans but they love the experience. Maybe just not watched rugby in the right football ground.

There's also other considerations, when Tigers had to host a couple of games at the Walkers (now King Power) Stadium the kiosks ran out of beer around half time. The cellars just weren't as big as they generally didn't sell as much beer at the football.

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Post by Irish Londoner Tue 14 Jun 2022, 11:43 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:I have quite liked my trips to footy grounds tbh, don't know why you deem them soulless, or why they would need to be. I'd still say the point of moving the games is to give a fair balance to the semis, as there's no time to fit in another game and yes it will give better opportunity to people not normally attending games to go along, if advertised well. I don't think it's a bad idea at all.

Why would there be a sudden influx of fans to semi finals played at neutral grounds that we don't see at rugby grounds? Bearing in mind that the old "London double header" - featuring four established Premiership sides and where tickets were comparatively cheap and easily available never filled Twickenham.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 14 Jun 2022, 11:56 am

Irish Londoner wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:I have quite liked my trips to footy grounds tbh, don't know why you deem them soulless, or why they would need to be. I'd still say the point of moving the games is to give a fair balance to the semis, as there's no time to fit in another game and yes it will give better opportunity to people not normally attending games to go along, if advertised well. I don't think it's a bad idea at all.

Why would there be a sudden influx of fans to semi finals played at neutral grounds that we don't see at rugby grounds? Bearing in mind that the old "London double header" - featuring four established Premiership sides and  where tickets were comparatively cheap and easily available never filled Twickenham.

Seeing as you asked 3 times I'm forced to answer! It's the view from the proposal that it's an opportunity to get new people through the gates. May bomb but could give people a nudge to try it.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 14 Jun 2022, 1:12 pm

I don't dislike sending rugby to areas where it is potentially underrepresented but I think there are probably better ways of doing it. The England Saxons were a good excuse to send interesting games to smaller grounds and I'd actually quite like to see that comeback again.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 14 Jun 2022, 1:29 pm

We're seeing it with the women's team, when they came to Donny tickets were like hot cakes. One of the issues and thus potential areas of growth is how much the game is dominated by the South. If we could get the final up at Old Trafford or Anfield etc I'm sure it would be very popular.

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Post by Irish Londoner Tue 14 Jun 2022, 2:35 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:
Irish Londoner wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:I have quite liked my trips to footy grounds tbh, don't know why you deem them soulless, or why they would need to be. I'd still say the point of moving the games is to give a fair balance to the semis, as there's no time to fit in another game and yes it will give better opportunity to people not normally attending games to go along, if advertised well. I don't think it's a bad idea at all.

Why would there be a sudden influx of fans to semi finals played at neutral grounds that we don't see at rugby grounds? Bearing in mind that the old "London double header" - featuring four established Premiership sides and  where tickets were comparatively cheap and easily available never filled Twickenham.

Seeing as you asked 3 times I'm forced to answer! It's the view from the proposal that it's an opportunity to get new people through the gates. May bomb but could give people a nudge to try it.

Sorry about the triple post V2 said it wasn't working so I resent. If the mods can remove them I'd be grateful thumbsup Very Happy

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 14 Jun 2022, 3:03 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:We're seeing it with the women's team, when they came to Donny tickets were like hot cakes. One of the issues and thus potential areas of growth is how much the game is dominated by the South. If we could get the final up at Old Trafford or Anfield etc I'm sure it would be very popular.

Doncaster finished second in the Championship, got to say I was hoping they'd get promoted as a Prem team back in Yorkshire would be good for the sport.

An England second team or development team (under 25s) playing games in the summer Vs tier 2 and 3 nations would still be a good draw I think. Play a little three game tournament like the old Churchill Cup and then split the games two in the South, two in the Midlands and two up North with the England side playing one in each area and move it around each summer.

I suppose you could move the second and third team playoff as an experiment and see what crowds you get. It would be easier to do a semi final initially as there isn't the requirement for a massive stadium like there is for the final. The first place team could still have home advantage so the top team still gets that particular reward.

Yeah the final up north for a season would be good. Would be quite nice to alternate between north and south actually. It's just a shame the stadiums big enough to host it aren't common. Anfield has going on for nearly 30,000 less seats then Twickers, it's not big enough. Really you're looking at Old Trafford being the only English based stadium worth moving it to and even then it's a 9,000 drop in the number of seats.

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Post by doctor_grey Tue 14 Jun 2022, 5:33 pm

I think it gets a little goofy with a neutral site double header. Almost seems like throwing stuff up on the wall and seeing what sticks, if anything.

The neutral site semi seems to me to only reward teams for making the top 4. No benefit for superior season long performance and really does diminish the end of a season when some fighting for position usually goes down to the wire.

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Post by tigertattie Wed 15 Jun 2022, 10:27 am

Tell you what, some of those yellow cards over the weekend were very close to reds for me.

Was there a bit of refs not wanting to show the red because it was the semi finals???
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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 15 Jun 2022, 12:19 pm

I don't think there was any call for red in the Tigers game. Porter's card was spot on, textbook treatment. Heffernan's was extremely harsh but I felt Carley was mindful that he'd made an error with Dingwall only getting a penalty for the swinging arm on Potter but again that would have been just a yellow.

The Sarries Vs Quins game was a complete farce in terms of officiating.

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Post by yappysnap Thu 16 Jun 2022, 3:59 am

I have a real sinking feeling that Sarries are going to win the league aren't they?

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Post by Geordie Thu 16 Jun 2022, 7:36 am

So Nadolo at 12?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 16 Jun 2022, 8:01 am

yappysnap wrote:I have a real sinking feeling that Sarries are going to win the league aren't they?

I can't see how Leicester are going to beat them but I have no sinking feeling about it. Far further along the road of development even with the year off in the Championship.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Thu 16 Jun 2022, 9:04 am

yappysnap wrote:I have a real sinking feeling that Sarries are going to win the league aren't they?

Sadly you and me both. I'm hoping we can go out there and hit them hard and early and Barnes will deal with the poor Sarries discipline harshly.

No Kelly really is a body blow for Tigers he's become vital in attack and defence. I'm hoping we stick Nemani in there and just run him down Farrell's channel. Will force some of the Sarries backrow to have to stand in the midfield which might assist our somewhat obvious forward power game.

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Post by Geordie Thu 16 Jun 2022, 5:09 pm

What's the crack with Kelly. Is he out for the summer or a possibility of touring?

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Post by formerly known as Sam Thu 16 Jun 2022, 5:18 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:What's the crack with Kelly. Is he out for the summer or a possibility of touring?

His hamstring went two mins into the game and there's been no update since. It was the same leg as he's been out for a couple of months with. I can't see him being selected with a lingering hamstring injury like that. Unless it's somehow cleared up ready for this weekend. I doubt Borthwick will comment before the game as he'll want to keep Sarries guessing over the make up of the backline.

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Post by Geordie Thu 16 Jun 2022, 10:44 pm

I fully expect Nadolo at 12 for 40 mins....empty the tank on Farrell then work on a different set up second half...with Burns etc.

Or maybe that's what Borthwick wants Saracens to expect

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Post by formerly known as Sam Fri 17 Jun 2022, 8:38 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:I fully expect Nadolo at 12 for 40 mins....empty the tank on Farrell then work on a different set up second half...with Burns etc.

Or maybe that's what Borthwick wants Saracens to expect

Quite possibly. Having Porter on the bench would mean we could everything outside 9/10 with one player so I could see him in the 23 shirt if Nadolo is at 12. Considering the slow starts we've had Nadolo at 12 would give us a lot of early go forward which would be nice.

Borthwick has tended to favour the Porter and Moroni centre combination though, the added Porter physicality and Moody esque lack of concern for his own personal health has him ahead of the more skilled Matt Scott. Dan Kelly I can't see being risked again, it was a gamble worth taking against Saints backline but not sure we can afford to repeat it in the final even if he's able to.

If Porter isn't starting on the wing it's likely we'll then go to a Potter and Ashton combination which would offer more pace which on the wider Twickers pitch might find more joy and help defend Sarries attack better. I'd also be tempted to place money on Moroni going after at least one intercept on those flat wide passes from Farrell.

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