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PiffPaff View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PiffPaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2021 at 06:47
Dickon agree 100%.

Halliford all the "surveys" they did re: Future Comps aren't worth squat. Low sample size, skewed questions and moreover ignoring the "negative" points which disagreed with the FCS/RFU Comps plans. 

The Webinars on the other hand showed strong support against lower 15s entry in two of the four regions. The North was something like 75% against and similar for the Cups (which at the time was going to be straight knockouts.

CF makes a good point about the Final venue, the FCS document makes this statement on cups.

7. Cup Rugby As indicated above there is a strong demand from players for a varied diet of competition through both league and cup rugby. Feedback has also indicated that an issue with the existing delivery of cup rugby is that it clashes with the intensity and frequency of leagues, often leading to high numbers of walkovers or cancellations in early rounds. This feedback was pivotal in establishing the recommendations for new cup competitions at Level 5 and below. The key features of the proposed new cup competitions are: • Delivered after league season – all cups will take place after the league season has been completed. This removes the burden and clash between league and cup games being integrated into the fixture schedule. Furthermore, a team’s finishing league position will qualify them into the relevant tier of competition at the level they are playing at. For example, teams finishing 1st to 3rd will compete against teams finishing in the same positions from leagues across the country or region, ensuring meaningful matches. • Mid-season entry – entry into the cup (at all levels) will be optional and the deadline for teams submitting their entry will be mid-season (Jan/Feb). This will help support teams and players who may need breaks later in the season or have no interest or desire for the cup. Conversely for some teams this model maintains interest and excitement to the end of season for those who want or need more matches. • Pool competitions at Level 5 and top tier of Level 6 – teams will be grouped into pools, thus guaranteeing additional fixtures (minimum of 3 and maximum of 6) including with additional fixtures at home. The winners of each pool will then progress into the knockout rounds. • Waterfall competitions at bottom tier of Level 6 and Level 7 and below – teams will be drawn against one another in straight knockout matches. Teams losing in the 1st round will drop down into a Plate competition while 1st round winner’s progress. This will guarantee at least two additional games for entrants. There may be opportunities to regionalise in the early rounds to remove the burden of significant travel for some teams in the early stages. • Community Game finals day - the intention would be to try to ensure all cup competitions culminate in a National Community Game Finals Day held at prestigious grounds to provide a memorable experience for teams and players. 

So, no Twickenham final and as Robb says the memories that go with that. Now if that was included in the surveys how many of those players surveyed would have been positive about Cups?

Past Nat. Cups = Treading the hallowed grounds of TW2, FCS Cups = Birmingham Moseley? Sixways? somewhere central...... think you'll find a high percentage of players in the survey down in the South East (and the rest of the country) now fancy the cup a lot less if they aren't going to Twickers!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Halliford Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2021 at 08:11
Dickson, I agree with you on the Survey data. The point I’m making is that Clubs have had years to oppose this and haven’t. I remember going to a Surrey meeting at Cobham about 3 years ago and finding our opposition to the changes being in a minority. The majority was hardly representative - only 12 Clubs turned up - but apathy doesn’t win fights. The NCA arrangements are fully supported. I agree that the Lower XV arrangements are contentious, I did some work for the NCA on this and reached the conclusion that no one solution would suit every Division. 

Clubs have had years to get their arguments across, what have those who don’t like these arrangements been doing?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DICKON Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2021 at 09:36
The clubs have been doing what they can within the confines of what the RFU have allowed to this point Halliford, namely attending the sessions on the re-org and roundly opposing them. The next step has to be to place huge pressure on the 62 members of the Council to oppose the changes too - this will need to happen quickly, and I will be making sure my reps understand the strength of opposition to the changes beneath the National Leagues (and I agree with you that the changes at Level 4 and above have the necessary support). I predict here that if the changes do go through, another big re-org will be upon us within a couple of seasons (noting that this re-org includes a caveat around 'rapid restructuring every 3 years'). It will be interesting to see whether that happens with or without RFU support...

Edited by DICKON - 06 Apr 2021 at 10:48
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Halliford Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2021 at 12:52
Dickon, apologies for the autocorrect misspelling on my previous post, my concern is that the Clubs who disagree have been drowned out by those that do agree. That Surrey meeting at Cobham had several Level 5-8 Clubs, all of whom wanted a Cup, smaller Leagues and, thus, the opportunity to rise up faster. If you can get a broad cross-section of Clubs to oppose these changes vocally then I’ll happily put your views to those RFU Council members to whom I have access.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote workerbee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2021 at 15:59
In the Northwest there is an issue with allowing 2nd XV into the leagues, Lancashire are 100% against and clubs at level 7 and below will not take part in RFU leagues if it happens (they already have their own leagues) but would re join the RFU leagues but not if 2nd XV were allowed. They believe that if Semi Pro clubs second XV joined they would attract players away from the smaller clubs, I am not sure how many players would be attracted as it only relates to 5 clubs at most. Another argument is that it would cause many miss matches , this already happens in the Northwest Norwiral 2nd XV premier league as there are only about 5-7 competitive teams and scores against some of the smaller clubs can be over 60 points with some over 100, this is not good for anyone. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PiffPaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2021 at 16:38
So WB you believe putting Level 3 & 4 2nd XVs in with Level 7 1st XVs is more of an even match than playing 2nd XVs of Level 5 Clubs? Interesting point of view.

Of course in NOWIRUL Premier you can't get promotion and as you say probably only have 5 or 7 competitive fixtures but fixtures you do have as it pays for other clubs not to cry-off as it has an adverse effect on their 3rd and 4th XVs lower down in NOWIRUL. You also have a nice knockout Cup in NOWIRUL.

Pretty sure at NCC Level 7 in 22/23 you'll have less League games against easier opposition with no cup to play in and League that you still can't get promoted out of. So if you are looking for less rugby, no  cup rugby for your 2nd XV and the likelihood that sides will concede more often then make sure you push the Cheshire Rep to vote for the proposed changes.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Thatbloke Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2021 at 17:43
Problem with bringing 2nd XV's into the system is that their strength very seldom matches the "standing" of the 1st XV. If a club is running 4 or 5 senior teams then the 2nd XV is likely to be much stronger than a club just running the 2. The reality is that you could have a stronger Level 5 2nd XV than the 2nds of a Level 3 or 4 club
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Camquin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 10:04
Surely that is why they should be promoted and relegated seperately from their 1st team.

You might not want second teams in the top levels - if only because with the current funding situation, a premiership second XV is as strong as a championship club. So you want a separate Premiership A league

Aside from a side like Richmond II,  I do not think there would be any second teams capable of playing above level 6 for a whole season. But I think they and the other  teams in the shield premier would be mismatches at level 7.

So you are going to need leagues like the Shield premiership and the Noriwul Premiership for the second teams of the level 2 and 3 sides.

But, you would then have a problem if some of the clubs in one county vehemently objected and broke away to form their own league.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PiffPaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 11:08
cq, think workerbee is pushing for his 2nd XV (Caldy) to be allowed to play at Level 7 in the NCC because he feels NOWIRUL doesn't provide a level of competition for them. wb seems to think that those 2nd XVs from Level 4 and 5 Clubs are no longer a challenge and that 1st XVs at Level 7 will up the competitive level, it won't. What it will create at Level 7 is a log-jam of 2nd XVs at the top of Level 7 Leagues.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Free Fall Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 11:32
I maybe wrong (and I’m usually), but, it sounds like a lot of 1st Team only Clubs are worried they will be beaten and then relegated by other Clubs 2nd XV to me? 

If a 2nd XV wins the League, they are in, then they earned the right to be promoted and play at the next Level. 

I don’t agree with 2nd XV being promoted to just fill spaces in the Leagues, promotion has to be earned, by winning the League or finishing 2nd. 

2nd XV/Academy teams of Premiership Clubs are a different matter, there are 12 Academies/2nd XV, they have a League and they can play against each other, otherwise, they will just be the 12 Teams in Championship in a few seasons! 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W-J Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 11:59
How do you manage registrations with two teams from one club?  The 2nd XV is often used to get 1st team players back to match fitness after injury, and some players switch between 1st and 2nd teams almost on a weekly basis depending on form and availability.  And what is to stop a club whose 2nd team are chasing promotion but whose 1sts have nothing left to play for from dropping a load of ringers down to help the 2nd team out at the business end of the season?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PiffPaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 12:16
Except FF, lower XVs (not just 2nd XVs) won't be allowed (at the moment) to go any higher than Level 7. So you could have three 2nd XVs finishing 1st,2nd and 3rd in a Level 7 League while the 1st XV who finish 4th would be promoted in their place. In addition should a 2nd XV sit at the top of a Level 7 League they will get automatically relegated if their 1st XV get relegated into that league (Clubs need to read the small print on lower XV entry criteria its a eyeopener)

MWJ yep another concern. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Halliford Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 12:50
Great to see most of the arguments that came up 3 years ago when I looked at this for the NCA being rehehazelnutd here! 

Another issue is how Level 7, presumably amateur, teams would feel playing a 2nd XV from a Level 3/4 Club which could have semi-professional retained players in their side. 

My own conclusion with the NCA work was not to allow 2nd XVs into the main League structure but to enhance and support the existing 2nd XV Leagues/Merit Tables. For example there could be an end-of-season play-off between the League leaders in each of the 4 Divisions. These matches would have to be played on the same dates as 1st XV League matches to avoid too many players being "dropped" but could provide some extra incentive.

The RFU did offer some years ago to provide administrative support to those Leagues and I'm not sure that got taken up. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote everest Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 13:23
I think when you get down to the meat of the community game from 6 down the greatest challenge to any club is the amount of miles expected to satisfy away games, certainly when you get to the end of the season. I know last year our club at level 6 did over 2000 miles, post this review this has now risen with one fixture being a 300 mile round trip. To answer your question IMHO i doubt we would care who we played it has to be better than being sat on a coach for 8 hrs when many of our players have young families and work for themselves I cannot understand for the life of me why to satisfy a game 100 miles away we drive past so many clubs at our level but in a different league structure 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PiffPaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 13:47
everest, it would seem to relieve the distance travel issue at Level 7 they've increased it ever so slightly at Level 6. One newly created League in the North sees Lancs & Cheshire Clubs travelling over to Lincolnshire and vice versa.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote everest Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 14:02
PiffPaff - yes agreed in our particular case we would do less miles if we played in one of the lower French Leagues !!!
I guess the question should be what is the real difference between level 6 and 7, based upon the many years we have played at this level it is normally apparent the 1 team is far stronger than any other team and normally runs away with the League, it is normally also the case that they are as strong away from home as well as at home which again offers many miss matches. If we took our club we could build 75% of a league from level 6 and 7 within a 1 hour drive of our club house, the furthest trip we would have to do would be maybe 2 hrs to complete the league, back in the day our fixture guy used to ensure this was the case, it all looks ok on paper but when you field 2 to 3 teams there is a significant ripple effect when you find yourself leaving on a saturday at 8am in the morning on a £700 coach - much more work to do on this i am sure
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PiffPaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 14:51
er......very little work to do I'm afraid everest, as apparently the FCSG (Future Competitions Structure Group) have spent the best part of two years coming up with the current plan which will be voted in....or not by the RFU Council next week. If voted in, then full steam ahead in 2022/23.

You may need to learn Francais if you want to play local.


Edited by PiffPaff - 07 Apr 2021 at 15:05
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote everest Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 15:28
PiffPaff - ouch - 177mile average away round trip, playing in 5 different counties and not one game in our own county, this is how we are trying to improve the community game we need to get promoted to the Prem just to cut down on the miles - very unrealistic expectations of the RFU 300 mile round trip to fulfill a game of rugby at level 6 - madness 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Camquin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 15:34
They have not changed the league structure at the lower levels just promoted some teams and added in a sprinking of second teams without putting names on them. I cannot even guarantee they are the correct number of slots.

So Wimborne still get to go to Cornwall - but never play any Hampshire sides. (caveat it appears Ellingham and Ringwood II already play in the Dorset league so do play Wimborne III while E&R's first team play in Hampshire league both end up at level 9 in the new pyramid).

I am sure that with a little bit of coding and a few minutes of time on AWS they could have come up with new leagues that mimimised travel - either total distance or single journey. But that would have meant setting up a whole new set of league committees.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote workerbee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Apr 2021 at 15:56
I think that whilst  the majority of Clubs at level 5,6,7 are happy with their position there are a number of clubs that are ambitious and would like to move through the pyramid. It is essential that these clubs are aware of the cost of travel which will no longer be funded by the RFU .In one option at level 6 in the North west there could be 3 Cumbrian clubs and one IOM, which would be a serious cost in the budget



Edited by workerbee - 07 Apr 2021 at 21:38
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