Discussion Forum

Rugby League is bac...
 

Rugby League is back without scrums

 

Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  

I love my Rugby League so if yesterday is anything to go by my Saturdays and Sundays are sorted for the next few weeks. However with no scums and extra 6 tackles for infringements instead of penalties I watched yesterday’s matches with a little scepticism of how the sport would continue. The matches will all be played at selected neutral grounds for the time being, but the fitness of all 4 teams yesterday was quite astonishing. Nevertheless class usually tells in the end as it did in the first match between St Helens and Catalans, but the second match beat Saturday’s FA Cup Final to a tee and was a great idea to pitch together Huddersfield, the birth place of Rugby League, against Leeds Rhinos at the revamped Headingley Stadium. 

I have no particular leaning to either club but was impressed how Huddersfield played as they were by far the better team for 65 minutes and deserved their 26-6 lead. But suddenly they tired as Leeds scored 4 tries in the last 10 minutes with the equalising converted try coming just as the hooter sounded. Now draws don’t count anymore in Rugby League, which I can’t say I’m in favour with, and extra time of 10 minutes each way is played  unless one side scores a golden point. Luke Gale who played for Castleford in the 2017 playoff win against St Helens having just had his appendix removed  12 days previously and scored a last minute penalty to take that match to extra time and then scored a drop goal, did it again this time for Leeds. I suppose this is in football terms, a team coming from 4 goals down with only 10 minutes remaining scoring 4 times to force extra time then winning it in extra time. It brought back happy memories of what Gale did for Cas, and is almost as sensational as what Ben Stokes did for England last summer, and what Boro did in the EUFA Cup twice in 2006. No hang on, nothing could have been as exciting as that! 

Nevertheless as an impartial viewer it beats any football match I’ve seen in the last 3 years or so, and with the English football season closed now for 5 weeks or so was a great advertisement for the sport of Rugby League and  will hopefully attract more TV viewers in the coming weeks.


Quote
Martin Bellamy
Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 549
 

I didn’t see the game @kensmith but could have done with a Far Town win to help the Warriors’ case 😏.


ReplyQuote
Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  

Watched all 5 Rugby League matches at Headingley these last 3 days, lovely weather there, but has anyone seen the sun in Redcar? Too tired to watch the PGA golf in San Francisco and it ain’t there either. Will record the highlights and watch tomorrow. Could be an English winner, first since 1919.  
 
Goodnight Zebedee.


ReplyQuote
Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  

Today is the 125th anniversary of the formation of the Northern Union now of course known as Rugby League, at the George Hotel in Huddersfield in 1895. Starting proceedings will be Wigan Warriors v Castleford Tigers behind closed doors in Warrington. 


ReplyQuote
Martin Bellamy
Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 549
 

Is it ok to say that I enjoyed the game and the result, Len?


Liked by Ken Smith
ReplyQuote
Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  

Super League now becoming a farce with points ratio per match when there have only been 3 matches played by the top 4 clubs against each other out of 12 scheduled matches whilst after tomorrow Cas will have played 8 matches against the top 4 clubs.


ReplyQuote
Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  

No excuses for the exit of Cas from the Rugby League Challenge Cup yesterday. It’s all right bemoaning 3 days turnaround between matches, but 40 years ago all Rugby League and Football clubs were expected to play 3 matches in 4 days at both Christmas and Easter. In fact in 1947 all rugby league clubs played on 3 consecutive days-Christmas Day, Boxing Day and the following day which was a Saturday. What’s more 7 Cas players played in each of those 3 days. Don’t forget that there weren’t any interchanges in those days with every player having to play a full 80 minutes on quagmires at times. I’m also informed that often Cas players took their boots down the pits with them so that they could have a quick swill at the rugby ground before playing in the match. Tough as teak were some of those lads when players were only part time professionals. 


ReplyQuote
Redcar Red
Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 903
 

@ken I briefly flicked through Channels whilst waiting for Mrs Red to provide her next set of instructions and saw the last ten minutes of the first half.

That "interception" just before half time killed any hope Cas had. I tutted and thought "Typical Boro" then in a split second realised it wasn't even the right shaped ball let alone Boro but I did feel your pain at that moment.


ReplyQuote
Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  

How will the North East and particularly Middlesbrough take to Rugby League especially after the World Cup? Of course when Gateshead Thunder entered Super League in its inaugural season the club despite finishing 6th made heavy losses and lasted only one season, but since Newcastle took over at Kingston Park they’ve never even been promoted to the Championship. However the Magic Weekend has always attracted more fans than Cardiff, Murrayfield, the Etihad Stadium or Anfield and Newcastle now have amb


ReplyQuote
Martin Bellamy
Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 549
 

I’d never been interested in RL before I crossed the Pennines in ‘88 but became a huge fan because we had a big connection with Wigan and a box at Central Park. 

I’m not as invested in the Warriors emotionally as I am with the Boro but I still love the game and admire the physicality of the players. 

We used to see the players out and about in Wigan most weekends but never saw a Latics player because very few of them seemed to live in Wigan. 

I’m definitely thinking of coming over to Middlesbrough to watch a RL game at the Riverside. 


Liked by Ken Smith
ReplyQuote
Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  
Posted by: @ken

How will the North East and particularly Middlesbrough take to Rugby League especially after the World Cup? Of course when Gateshead Thunder entered Super League in its inaugural season the club despite finishing 6th made heavy losses and lasted only one season, but since Newcastle took over at Kingston Park they’ve never even been promoted to the Championship. However the Magic Weekend has always attracted more fans at St James’s Park than Cardiff, Murrayfield, the Etihad Stadium or Anfield, and Newcastle now have ambitions to reach Super League within the next 10 years. As for Teesside the Steelers did quite well in the two years of their existence at the beginning of this century, but now only Yarm Wolves and Hartlepool Hurricanes are in existence, and I doubt if many Teessiders are aware of that.

However next year’s Rugby World Cup might spread the word that Rugby League does exist on Teesside as they have been allocated one match between Tonga and the Cook Islands, the latter to be based at Darlington. Already a year in advance of that match 13% of the ticket allocation has been sold, and it is hoped that a crowd of around 30,000 will attend the match despite like all the matches being televised live by the BBC. Of course realistically only Australia, England or New Zealand are likely to win the trophy but most South Sea Islanders are now playing for their country of birth instead of New Zealand so Tonga are potential Semifinalists. Maybe they will become our team much like North Korea in the 1966 football World Cup. But there is the hope that both Middlesbrough and Darlington will form teams to participate in the 3rd tier of the Rugby League pyramid system in the future. It all depends really how Teesside takes to the sport, but having lost Yorkshire County Cricket fixtures in this region, is it possible that Rugby League might become a major summer sport on Teesside in the future?

 


ReplyQuote
Ken Smith
Mr
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1650
Topic starter  

I think it would be remiss of me not to congratulate the England cricket team for their win against India in Chennai. I think it’s probably more difficult to win in India nowadays than in Australia. Superb from Burnley’s Jimmy Anderson, isn’t it time he received a knighthood? Also the King of playing spin Joe Root is probably in the form of his life both as a batsman and a captain. Well done, lads!


ReplyQuote
Share: