Sorry, it is a bit down beat.
London Irish V Saracens Preview
This weekend sees the start of the EDF Energy Cup Competition. This competition has a new sponsor but the same crap format that will most likely mean that London Irish will potentially be playing in a dead pool come next weekend when Wasps provide the opposition. The pool for this competition is the same as last year, with Cardiff providing the fourth team. God help us by the time we get to that round, that will almost certainly be truly a dead game in terms of the competition! Of course, I could be completely wrong in my assessment.
Still, to Saracens. Both Saracens and London Irish have had a mixed start to the season, with both teams having succumbed to Wasps already. Sarries in the London Double Header, putting up a spirited fight in what was a really dull game and Irish at Adams Park or whatever it is called this week. I wonder how seriously Wasps are taking the domestic Cup competition this season?
It will be interesting to see the squads that are announced. My belief is that this competition figures low on the priority list for Irish, even if there is a Heineken Cup place on offer for the winners. If this is the case, I would anticipate a run-out for the academy lads with a mixture of experience thrown in. One way of looking at it is that it gives the injured members of the squad time to recover over the next few weeks and gives some valuable experience of running out on Premiership grounds (if not crowds) for the younger lads. It also gives us supporters a chance to see the younger lads in action. For Season Ticket Holders the admission price is at least included, this should help to stabilise the crowd numbers.
It will be the first clash between Brian Smith and Alan Gaffney as fully-fledged Directors of Rugby. Will Aussie pride mean that this becomes a battle royal? I suspect not.
It is difficult to get ‘up’ for this competition, although I will be baying from the stands as per normal on Saturday, as a whole. That said, an Irish win would undoubtedly change all that.
Did anybody actually tell EDF that the format introduced last year is rubbish? I guess not, otherwise they wouldn’t have sponsored it, methinks. That said, they are a major sports and rugby sponsor, being a Partner in the Rugby World Cup among other Sports Sponsorship.
For my money, the old format of the Powergen worked well, where there was a chance that a minnow, such as Pertemps Bees could cause an upset. Now, well…
Last edited by Loobs
on Wed Sep 27, 2006 8:04 am, edited 1 time in total.