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Nat2S status 2019-2020

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Darth Raider View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Darth Raider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Nov 2019 at 19:34
Gracious of you OH.....methinks you should award yourself a whole case of Rioja or Malbeq ?

As to the DR debate.....it has been discussed here a few times i think....but......FWIW....my two penneth.

Back in the day (my way of saying I can't remember when), I thought it was a brilliant system.  My dodgy recollection only pertains to my own team but, around the time that the likes of Joe Marler was with us, I think our DR's came for the whole season.....i stand to be corrected by more knowledgeable Raiders posters.
In that scenario......it was a WIN WIN WIN to me.  Quins had a young lad playing high quality mans rugby for a whole year and most likely coming back a better and more mature player/person.  The host club had a player who was a consistent member of the squad....a genuine and consistent team member who shared in the successes and failures with everybody else.  the benefits to the individual are obvious and manifest IMO.

This progressively changed over time (as i recall) as DR's were called back for training.....A league games.....Cup competitions etc......to the point where they were available less than half the time BUT....it SEEMED that they had to be picked when available.  As far as a team ethos is concerned....i don;t think that is good at all ?

So going back to a point I think Wigwam made.......I am not disappointed from a longer term perspective that we have now lost our 3 Quins DR's.  We needed at some point (IMO) to stand up as a local side without them.

I confess that I did take great pleasure in watching some outstanding young players develop in our ranks, it was a privilege from a pure spectators viewpoint, but to my mind it is just WRONG.  

Look at it this way........most of us play TEAM A and beat them convincingly, then near the end of the season TEAM A deploy four really good players that change all normal league results and both the promotion and relegation battles are decided by this........is that right ?

Banging on even longer than usual.......in my dodgy recollection, this is why my lot got relegated from Nat1......with half a dozen games to go, we looked like we would survive and (i believe) at the time still had the highest number of bonus points in the league.  There was at least one and possibly two (my memory is genuinely not good) northern sides that looked like they were down.  As I recall, I think that it was Newcastle that came to the rescue of either Tynedale, or maybe Blaydon ?  Either way, the team in question went on to win home and away against teams vying for promotion to the championship.   
They escaped........we went down........how fair is that ??,,,,,,,but at least i'm not bitter about it  TongueTongueWinkWinkAngryAngry
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not straight View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote not straight Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2019 at 09:11
Totally agree Darth ,Hartpury at the moment have 11 loan players .so have dropped the players they signed from Clifton and Dings in the summer to hopefully keeping them in the championship !!! if they can't sustain their league position on their own is it worth it? Considering their player base already at the college and university
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Pilier View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pilier Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2019 at 12:51
If the marriage between Bristol Bears and Dings is true, will Dings be renamed Dings Bear Cubs?
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Romanrelic View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Romanrelic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2019 at 14:32
Pilier - I thought you were more intelligent than to post a comment like that.
Not sure any Dings poster will take the bait.
Anyway, I can only surmise that you are a Jealous Clifton poster ? who needs to dig
deep for answers to why Bristol has allegedly teamed up with Dings and not Clifton.
Let me know when you have the answer....
RR
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Pilier View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pilier Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2019 at 15:50
Just a bit of banter sorry if it offended you old relic.

Me a Llanelli supporter living in the wilds of Wiltshire, so the M4 takes me to some interesting rugby locations between Reading and Bristol, amazing what you hear on the touchline especially at Old Reds and Dings great humour there but it might be lost on you.
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Romanrelic View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Romanrelic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2019 at 16:32
Pilier - Humour never lost on me and when it comes to winding people up, count me in.
Info only, I myself have never associated with any club as it allows me to pitch in and out of any debate.
Reverse psychology plays a great part in obtaining valuable information.
I claim to live in Bath hence the name and close to retirement, but that’s all posters need to know.
Regards Old Reds, Clifton and Dings I don’t really care what they get up to but wish them no harm.
Technically, they are all in my back yard.
Hope this gives some insight on me.
RR
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not straight View Drop Down
Mini and Juniors
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote not straight Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2019 at 18:02
the best one I heard was the Bristol BARE Ladies
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sweatysock View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sweatysock Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 2019 at 17:45
good win and performance by Worthing today - thoroughly deserved the win (scrum dominance was the key). Yet again playing (and watching) conditions were horrendous - thats 3 home games in a row in torrential rain.

Hopefully we can watch a game on a nice warm, dry afternoon soon!


Edited by sweatysock - 09 Nov 2019 at 17:47
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Hectors House View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hectors House Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 2019 at 18:18
Lucky to watch a game today sweaty sock. Bury St Ed’s were within an hour of arriving at Old Reds today only to take a call stating game was off due to waterlogged pitch. An hour later, a reliable source reported back, having seen the pitch, ..... conditions were considerably better than the week before at Lions 🙁.
Questionably one feels.
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Hawky666 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hawky666 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 2019 at 18:54
Very interesting. Does that warrant an investigation? Or will they be too busy with Saracens?

Cannot believe what happened to Hawks today. Gutted.
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Darth Raider View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Darth Raider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 2019 at 20:24
I was (of course) at the Rugby Park today........a good standard game in atrocious conditions for perhaps the 5th week on the trot ?  come on rugby gods....shape up !!

I disagree with sweaty to a degree, in that i thought Esher just had the better of the scrum in the first half, but our lads got progressively better in the second half and forced a couple of turnovers.  our lineout was still not great on the whole but the overall performance of our pack was just oustanding and given the territory and possession we dominated, we might have won more easily.....the Esher defence was excellent throughout.  Our half back pairing decided the game IMO and our young scrum half was just excellent.  Another good win and we have a couple of players back now.....more quality to come back in the next month Tongue.  hopefully, this is the beginning of a momentum shift for us Big smileClap

Along those lines.....we won 5-0 at Clifton last week......clearly a good result but I was still astonished to see Hawks beaten by them at Wet Leas.....though their form has looked fragile of late ?  with Titans also showing defensive fragility, does this mean that somebody else could get into promotion challenge ?
What happened Hawky ?

I suppose Clifton's is the result of the day, but Choppers convincing win at OA's runs it close.  The home team have had a lot of good results of late, but Choppers defence has been excellent and this might be their best year ever on the road (in this league).  i suspect that maybe some change in travel arrangements ?  
The teams at the bottom continue to battle manfully, and much can change very quickly as we are seeing now, but it is beginning to look like one of them must catch Barnes if they are going to survive. 

Lastly.....Scotland Lane turns quickly into a quagmire when it rains......just IMO that actually favours the home side who play those conditions well.....i don't think that they would have wanted to call it off at all.
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Hawky666 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hawky666 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Nov 2019 at 20:44
We lost it last minute today and it looked like it hurt for the team as much it did us supporters. Don’t write us off yet! I thought we had it sorted. Didn’t happen.

Massive result for Worthing. Who thought they were winners in the rain?

TJ’s been given a boost with those results. Deserved!

For me the biggest win of the day is Redruth away from home. Wow. Some quality there now.

All teams seem to be struggling in the rain. Although, I thought Redcliffians would be relishing in it?

Hawky.

Edited by Hawky666 - 10 Nov 2019 at 11:00
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Darth Raider View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Darth Raider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2019 at 20:17
Much seems to have changed quickly in recent weeks......don't know why i am surprised, it happens to some degree every year in our league.

for the first few weeks it seemed that there were three teams at the top who were destined to battle it out for the promotion places and that the newcomers would struggle to survive.

As far as mid-table was concerned, it was most uncertain who would end up best of the rest and who might end up closest to the telegation zone ?

While some of all of this remains true.....I believe that we are seeing all sides coming closer together and the usual Nat2S status qup being restored....i.e...anyone can beat anyone .....well almost.

TJ's have managed to keep going.....albeit marginally on occasion,  while both Hawks and Titans are no longer inspiring fear in their opponents (IMO).  

At the bottom, we are seeing that all of the newcomers have more than decent packs and if ground conditions stay very soft, they will be a handful and might cause upsets ?  Can one or more of them get enough points to escape ? 

I still struggle to see the bottom three escaping but as seen so many times in the past, these relegation threatened sides are mega-motivated and often beat mid-table sides on motivation alone.  we will see what transpires.

Elsewhere........I note that most of our (Nat2S) exports to Nat1 are doing well.  unfortunate to report that I was right about the prospects of the City Side....they have battled manfully but I suspect that their pack have not been quite up to it and they have lost all 10 of their opening games.  it is a difficult transition and although I personally thought their backs were up to it, it may be that they just can't get enough ball ?

Nat2N is being dominated at the mo by CAldy and Fylde to such an extent that it looks likely that whoever finishes runner up in our league this year will face an away game .....eek....interesting to see how that develops ? 
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tigerburnie View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tigerburnie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2019 at 20:46
Bit early yet to make any predictions, I would normally stick my head above the parapet in the New Year, points wise not much in it to either rise or fall significantly. I am pleased with Leicester Lions first foray in the South league, if they can maintain an unbeaten record at home, that could well stand them in good stead at the end of the year.
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fatbear View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fatbear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2019 at 23:26
Based on Canterbury's visit to Chinnor in a match played in a torrential downpour - they have a big pack, win all their line outs, and are very strong with a line out 5 yards out ( they scored two from two ). Defensively the tackling by their backs was flimsy.
 
This though, is how they have played in every game I have seen Canterbury play at Chinnor, and they have lost every time, so I am always puzzled by comments as to their backs being their strength !
 
Personally I see their backs as their weakness, especially at N1 level
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jester10 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2019 at 08:49
I haven't seen Canterbury yet this season, they visit Old Bath Road in a couple of weeks. However if they've got the basis of the pack they had last year, they were huge, but not the most mobile I've seen. 
Enjoying life!
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Darth Raider View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Darth Raider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2019 at 13:10
Fatbear/Jester......my opinion of Canterbury is based upon last season and several before.  I won't belabour you with a lot of stats, but in their promotion season last year they scored 133 tries, balanced 97/36 in favour of their backs......clearly more backs tries than anyone else in the league.  I thought them an out and out backs side.  I thought that their pack were big enough but ponderous and that they might struggle a level above.
much may have changed in terms of personelle in the interim, but I thought a lot of their backs were high quality and the half back pairing of Smart and Best (i think) were excellent.
I am still surprised that they have recorded just one TBP so far this year (with this in mind).

I defer to anybody that has watched them more recently.
Regardless, it seems likely that I will be watching them again next year as expected, but maybe for different reasons than I had anticipated.
Hopefully they will find a way to start winning games soon.  
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wyntngley View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote wyntngley Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Nov 2019 at 09:21
Morning all.

I’m not a regular contributor but do enjoy reading the forums.

This is a Sunday morning musing at best!

I was reflecting on the last 3 ClIfton matches (which I was at).

The Raiders win was deserved. The weather was atrocious. No excuses.

Away last Saturday and at home yesterday, the ‘X factor’ is good old fashioned team spirit.
In all the years I’ve been at the club (as a spectator, rugby dad, player, vet player, volunteer, committee member, chairman); I don’t remember such a palpable togetherness.

These two wins had the same foundations: dogged defence and individual resilience.
It’s been wonderful to watch and I do wish (as the wags on this forum will point out), that more people did come to see us play.

Thankfully, we don’t rely on gate money for finances (in fact we are now free entry to all club members (and the youth section is 500/600 strong); we also have kept the gate price to non members at £10 and will offer free entry to selected games during the season as last year.

However, supporters are spread thin in Bristol. Yesterday saw a Bears v Zebre Euro match and a Dings v Taunton match. Avonmouth, North Bristol, Bristol Saracens all played at home too - all this rugby within 5 miles. I’ve missed out another 12/15 matches on across the city.

I don’t believe for a second either that if ClIfton was literally the only match on that these others supporters would rock up to Station Road! We love our own clubs here :)

What is frustrating though, that maybe does need some planning from the powers that be is the clashes. It’s not unusual to have 2 out of Clifton, Dings and Reds at home with Bristol at home on a Saturday too. Premiership status and attractive fixtures certainly draw casual rugby supporters. Our home derby with Old Reds in January clashes with Bristol v Gloucester which recently moved from the Friday night.

So, I think we do well with our band of hardy 150 or so supporters. I wish we could get more mums and dads from the m&j along. I wish Bears didn’t play on Saturday so much. I’m still waiting for this world cup’s (and the last one) support, participation and finance boost!

The future might be brighter as housing development around our ground will bring 5,000-6,000 residents over the next few seasons and we should pick up some more support.

In the meantime, we have a brilliant team to watch, a friendly clubhouse, a great committee and rugby to enjoy.
I’ll try and contribute more on this forum to offer a thought or two. I have some insight but won’t speculate or throw dirt though - we are all in this together.
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Old Hooker View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Old Hooker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Nov 2019 at 11:04
Good morning Wyntngley. I must say a very interesting and well written piece. Welcome to the Forum. I now fully appreciate the issues of crowd numbers for the clubs in your area in this great league. Good luck for the rest of the season. Like us at Worthing you seem to have turned it round .
another one against the head
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Darth Raider View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Darth Raider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Nov 2019 at 14:48
Afternoon Wyntngley.......good post.....more news from Brizzle would be most welcome.  Clifton for a title challenge now ?  it would be good to see that happen, though I suspect squad depth might be an issue against the top 3 over the longer term.  much luck with injuries might help.
Leicester and Redruth are also on very good runs of form and they too might wonder if they can break into the battle at the top ?

Another good win from my lot......a good if very tight result in front of the usual tiny crowd at Barn Elms, but IMO a performance that was a level or two below those of the previous 2 weeks.  We will need to pick it up again next week. 

I was still surprised to see TJ's get toppled and all three of the main challengers have shown small signs of fragility.  

Raiders have opened a 10pt gap now to the bottom 5, who all lost again yesterday.  i guess it is likely that this will comprise the relegation scrap, for now at least.  there is a very long way to go still.  the games between these sides now assume massive significance. 
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