So here we are mid-November, league competition cancelled and currently in a full tiered lockdown. NOT LOOKING GOOD IS IT.
Well here is a quick roller coaster update of what we have been up to, where we want to be and hopefully some good news in line with getting us all back at the club and enjoying what we all share as a common interest.
If somebody had offered me an extended pre-season and not yet to have played a competitive game of rugby I would have stood in despair. But what this has offered us is the ability to continue to work on our structure and to ensure that all players within the 1st, 2nd and 3rd team structure fully understand our game plan. It has allowed us to go even further and reach levels that we would not normally expect to have achieved. So as a club we are in a much stronger position with lots of strength in depth and lots of opportunities for the remainder of this season (fingers crossed) and definitely for the 2021/2022 competitive season. If I am honest, would we have been ready to commence the season in September with our full game play and structure in place, the answer would have been no. Are we now ready to implement everything we planned to cover, then yes we are now ready.
So no promotion or relegation this season and no competitive RFU league structure either. We can sit here and moan or come at it with a plan and aim to get us all back at the club in groups of six on the touchline and in the bar. I would take that now and I am sure everyone would happily adhere to those rules for the rest of the season if it means we can play some rugby. So we have the prospect of localised leagues, a structure being led by the RFU with cluster groups helped and organised by the County. This could see us in a league of 7 clubs that will include Northwich, Lymm, Birkenhead Park, Macclesfield, Wirral, Wilmslow. So the easy maths give us the opportunity to play 12 competitive games against clubs in our league and 1 and 2 leagues above us. WHAT a challenge and a true reflection of where we are up to and what we have to achieve to play at a higher level. We have asked the questions and are pushing for 2nd and 3rd team fixtures to mirror the 1st team structure.
So to summarise, there is a glimmer of hope on the bleaky landscape and a huge opportunity (fingers crossed) to get back to the joy of groups of six and enjoying a pint or two. Let’s not forget the slight possibility of a RFU cup competition towards the end of the season………… all in all something for us all to focus on.
So as a brief timeline we massively need the RFU to move us to Stage E in the return to play protocol at some point in December. Once in stage E there will be a period of consolidation training with contact and seeing if Covid spreads within clubs. With an alteration in laws for the season it will see fewer scrums and mauls and more time with the ball in hand and in play. Then, once we move to stage F, rugby is on the horizon and hopefully the above process can commence.
So come on and say a little rugby prayer and will us into a positive space.
RUGBY IS ON THE HORIZON.