6th January 2010
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Rugby Notes from ‘Clubman’

Once more the winter weather took its toll and only three games survived in Two North as he Blues encounter at Preston Grasshoppers was postponed at on Friday following a pitch inspection and it now means that this game will be played on Saturday 20 March 2010 which is the only free date in the calendar until 1 May which is also play off date!!  I have no doubt that the RFU in their usual state of lack of understanding to clubs below Premiership/Championship will make an edict at some stage if the poor weather continues – watch this space!!!
The games that were played last weekend saw Hull beat Ionians in the Humberside ‘Derby’ by 27-7 and it is no coincidence that Hull are the next side to visit Priory Park – weather permitting, and at this stage it is not promising – this weekend (see ‘Preview’).
Loughborough Students moved further at the head of the table with an easy 42-3 victory over Rugby Lions and at the basement it was Bradford who beat Waterloo 17-8 at Blundellsands.
In the raging Bull Cup our seconds – The Lions – also were thwarted by the weather at Chester and this game will now take precedence over the League fixture this coming Saturday despite both clubs being happy to play it as a ‘double header’ but the league vetoed the move and therefore the ‘league’ fixture will be played later in the season and as I have already indicated I just hope that the bad weather stops this weekend or it will be a case of ‘Houston – we have a problem’ !!
The only good thing to come from this enforced lay off which now covers three weekends with Xmas is that any minor (and more serious) knocks have been rested and hopefully for the first ever visit of Hull this weekend we can see a full strength side on the park.
Before I close I must make brief mention of the well deserved knighthood which has been bestowed on Ian McGeechan in the New Year Honours List. Forty years in the game as a player, coach with Scotland, British & Irish Lions the award is fully deserved. Long may he continue.
Games this weekend:
1st v. Hull – League – Home –        
2nd v. Chester – Raging Bull Cup – Away
3rd v. Vale of Lune – league – Away
4th v. Congleton 2 – League – Home
Vets v. Winnington Park – League – Home

Saturday 9 January 2010 – Kick Off
Macclesfield v. Hull
We welcome to Priory Park newcomers this season to National Two a Hull side that has made something of a mixed start at this level after gaining promotion from North One following a play off against Chester at the close of last season.

They won the Hull ‘derby’ last weekend when they beat Hull Ionians 27-7 and this should send out warning signals as Ionians have been playing well recently and they scored a four try bonus point in doing so.
When we visited the Hull Sports Centre back in early September we won quite easily by 44-19 and a repeat would be very nice thank you but much water has passed under the bridge since then and their experienced player coach – Tevita Vaikona – will have instilled some of his influence of both codes of our great game into the squad for this encounter.

Hull presently sit in 11th place in the table with 7 victories and 8 defeats to their name but, as is oft said, this league has no easy games and each game must be played on its merits as we enter the second half of the campaign.  They have recorded a four try bonus point on 4 occasions compared with our 7 but both these lag well behind the Students who now boast no less than 11 such four try bonus points.

After the festive break can I ask you all to come along on Saturday to give voice to the Blues as they seek to retain a promotion seeking place in the table – kick off – and just £8 admission which included a comprehensive match day programme.  You will not get better value anywhere else in the area so come and lend your voice for the squad.

Enjoy your Rugby – I do,


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