***Rugby League in 2022***

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The new Hull City football club owner, Acun ilicali was speaking tonight and was surprisingly lukewarm at the prospect of sharing the MKM stadium. He said they would be looking to replace the pitch over the summer and see how it goes over the next year. Probably a load of tabloid spin, but should Hull FC be worried? Probably not, to be honest, but its a good bit of fun for Rovers fans!

Sounds like they might be getting some of the stuff we get from Wigan Athletic. There is very little crossover between the two sets of fans (and a bit of bad feeling tbh). Its like red meat to their fans if the football club's new owners can look as though they're disadvantaging the rugby team in any way - its usually a bit less when they are doing well. Of course, legally there's not a lot they can do to break existing contracts etc. Getting the pitch replaced during the summer is something we have had every season for years (no home games this year from 24th April to 24th June). It does mean that there are home games at the back end of the season, but does make it more difficult to sell season tix.
 
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Sounds like they might be getting some of the stuff we get from Wigan Athletic. There is very little crossover between the two sets of fans (and a bit of bad feeling tbh). Its like red meat to their fans if the football club's new owners can look as though they're disadvantaging the rugby team in any way - its usually a bit less when they are doing well. Of course, legally there's not a lot they can do to break existing contracts etc. Getting the pitch replaced during the summer is something we have had every season for years (no home games this year from 24th April to 24th June). It does mean that there are home games at the back end of the season, but does make it more difficult to sell season tix.

That's quite disappointing to hear.

I'm a Hull City fan and a Hull KR fan (Rovers comes first though, always!). But the amount of anti-RL bile I see on social media from some prominent Hull City fans is really saddening. It doesn't have to be a choice of one or the other, it can be both. There is constant bickering about the state of the pitch with football fans having a go at Hull FC for tearing it up and it just gets tiresome. The ground is council owned and was built for both teams to use (and yes, you did just witness me backing up Hull FC!).

Rovers games are much more atmospheric and personally I find rugby league more exciting than football but that doesn't stop me going to the occasional City game and my parents have season tickets for both City and Rovers.

Then there is the other tiresome argument about which sport is more popular based on home attendances...but I won't even get in to that.


Oh....and just two days before my first Hull derby in years and I test positive for covid-19. Great. Just great. Have to give my ticket away now I guess... :(
 

JRS

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Welp...after all the hype, all the chatter in the run-up, the Catalans-Toulouse match last night was...not a particularly stellar match of rugby league. Catalans ran out 18-10 winners, but we've lost McMeeken to a shoulder wrist* injury and probably lost Chan for a couple of games after his red card for a high tackle.

* - that's what I get for reading the UK match report before the French one.
 
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Saints defensive record is impressive again.

Last year it was Saints and Catalan that were a cut above everybody else, this year Catalan have fallen away slightly and Saints have stepped it up even further, immense team. That's why it'll be so good when Rovers beat them in the Challenge Cup final! :D

Sensible post about the Hull derby though: Rovers did exactly what they needed to do to grind out the win. It wasn't the most entertaining high quality RL you will ever see but it was one of the most satisfying and the atmosphere looked incredible. Coote, Ryan and Hall were outstanding, as was the probably NRL bound Matt Parcell. Buzzing to be a Rovers fan tonight.
 
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The Sam Powell crusher tackle was a shocker. How he didn't get a red card is beyond me. Similar to one Bret Ferres did on Gildart a few years ago, and its lucky that the young Sts player wasn't badly injured. He's looking at a lengthy ban and deservedly so.

Leuluai has ligament damage to the knee. If that's an ACL, that's probably a career ending injury at his age. He was in his best form for a couple of years as well.

That's the first choice hooker and half gone for the next 6-8 weeks anyway, so there's an opportunity for someone to step up.

Interesting that Gildart has been dropped by Wests in the NRL. That's the next step on his journey to Warrington ;)
 
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Fash up for a grade E for biting too. Replay got him bang to rights too, biting the finger of Minchella. Just a really strange thing to do and I'll never understand it.

Injuries tend to come into play around this time of year. Rovers not doing that badly on that front but was disappointing to lose Mikey Lewis for 2 months for an ankle injury. Tom Garrett, a young Rovers prop from Dewsbury (I think) suffering concussion symptoms which is really concerning. He, along with Frankie Halton have really stepped up for us this year and George King has been insane. Puts our southern hemisphere imports of Sims, Vete and Takaraingi to shame.

Taka just got a suspended sentence for drink driving too, he has been poor for us. There is a brilliant player in there somewhere but I can't see Rovers renewing his contract, same with Sims unfortunately, not lived up to the hype of his older bro.
 
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Wigan won quite comfortably. This is a game they would have lost last season. They are probably in the top 4 teams, but Catalan and Sts are miles ahead of anybody else.

Lewis Dodd has a bad Achilles injury. Its devastating news for him. I've had one of those injuries and they take ages to recover. It's unusual for Sts players to get injuries and says lots about their strength and conditioning team because they play at a consistently high level of intensity
 
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I give up on this season. Not only are Warrington playing well below average but the quality of the officials once again has not improved.

You can watch NRL and not notice they have a ref. Super league the game is about them.
 
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Pleasing comeback for Hull KR against the very slippery banana skin that was Toulouse. In fact, we had one foot firmly planted on said skin for quite a while in that game, but managed to claw back the victory.

5 in a row now for the Robins....Wakefield on Saturday will be a good game. They have sort of dropped off a little lately, particularly after the hammering on Monday, but Rovers shouldn't be complacent. Up to 6th in the table which is nice too and crucially have so far beaten all the teams below us. It will be a BIG test after the Wakey game away at Leeds.

Leeds are going to find it hard work against Toulouse, they are no easy beats and Leeds will struggle - few more injured and Bentley suspended for them. They have a LOT of injuries at the moment and kind of reminded me of Rovers teams of the past in that respect - when you have so many injuries all the time it just kills your team momentum - never being able to field the same team twice in a row.

There is a correlation, I believe, between teams that play better vs injuries and referee decisions. When your team plays poorly, players stretch themselves more and places additional physical strain = injuries. When your team plays poorly, players tend to concede penalties, or try too hard and make it unduly easy for refs to penalise them = perceived poor refereeing decisions. When Leeds won everything 5 years or so ago they pushed every boundary to its limit and "seemingly" got "every referee decision", same with Wigan of years past, but its not because of dodgy reffing, its because they are that good that they force other teams into making bad decisions and can come across as Leeds or Wigan being the golden boys and always getting the calls their way. When the reality is, its just that they were better teams.
 
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Pleasing comeback for Hull KR against the very slippery banana skin that was Toulouse. In fact, we had one foot firmly planted on said skin for quite a while in that game, but managed to claw back the victory.

5 in a row now for the Robins....Wakefield on Saturday will be a good game. They have sort of dropped off a little lately, particularly after the hammering on Monday, but Rovers shouldn't be complacent. Up to 6th in the table which is nice too and crucially have so far beaten all the teams below us. It will be a BIG test after the Wakey game away at Leeds.

Leeds are going to find it hard work against Toulouse, they are no easy beats and Leeds will struggle - few more injured and Bentley suspended for them. They have a LOT of injuries at the moment and kind of reminded me of Rovers teams of the past in that respect - when you have so many injuries all the time it just kills your team momentum - never being able to field the same team twice in a row.

There is a correlation, I believe, between teams that play better vs injuries and referee decisions. When your team plays poorly, players stretch themselves more and places additional physical strain = injuries. When your team plays poorly, players tend to concede penalties, or try too hard and make it unduly easy for refs to penalise them = perceived poor refereeing decisions. When Leeds won everything 5 years or so ago they pushed every boundary to its limit and "seemingly" got "every referee decision", same with Wigan of years past, but its not because of dodgy reffing, its because they are that good that they force other teams into making bad decisions and can come across as Leeds or Wigan being the golden boys and always getting the calls their way. When the reality is, its just that they were better teams.

Couldn’t agree more on perceptions.
 
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Terrible news coming out of the Rovers camp this morning that Tony Smith is due to leave at the end of the year. IT came out in TSs pre-match press brief this morning and clearly caught the club by surprise and they obviously weren't prepared for him to say it.

I'm a bit disappointed in TS's comments to be honest. No need to air the clubs dirty laundry in public. The fact that the club do not have a ready prepared statement suggests he is off script here, and made the announcement independently, which if true is unfair on the club and the supporters. It seems a little petulant to me.

He's done a great job and leaves the club in a better place but he's in danger of souring the whole experience.

His quotes from that press conference clearly indicate some sort of fall-out between himself and Paul Lakin (CEO) which is sad to see, especially when the club is flying high at the moment. Hope it doesn't lead to some big name players leaving and I hope it doesn't impact the on-field performances.

That being said, he has been prone to the odd enigmatic comment here and there and the fact that he has been so wishy-washy in his future commitment to Rovers must have been frustrating to the HKR board. You need long term plans as a club, and you cannot be dependent on the flip-flop, will I, won't I, attitude from a coach year after year (he kept asking for short term contracts). But ultimately, it doesn't give the club much stability when we are all on tender hooks at the end of each year about whether he will stay or not.
 

JRS

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Well now.

I've made no secret on here about my lack of regard for Hardaker - snarking about how he was as damaging to Wigan's chances in most matches as their opponents were, giggling at his puffery around England selection time, etc. I reckon Wigan will be better off without him.

Maybe he should join Leeds and get them relegated? That would be amusing :cool:
 
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I see Saints have decided to throw another game again...

"squad rotation after a busy Easter"....hmmmm whatever....just gifted Cas 2 points, just as they gifted Toulouse 2 points earlier, and just like they gifted 4 points to London Broncos when they were in Superleague.
 
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