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  1. Denver is a bit crackers for a one off game. Flight time from Sydney is almost 18 hours and crossing the Pacific date line is not a good journey for jet lag. Manchester to Denver is about 11.5 hours. Even with modern sport science you would expect such journeys to play an intense test match would have a negative affect on player performance at some point when back at their club so you can understand some clubs kicking off. England need to give France a game, and I am sure the Kiwis are looking to avenge their defeat by Tonga. Surely these are more realistic fixtures to play in the break?
  2. 2018 Series v NZ

    Plenty of good old fashioned RL moaning going on here. The RFL is damned whatever it does in this regard. Still at least they haven't booked a fixture at the Ricoh. It is great to know 12 months ahead when and where the fixtures are and to be able to plan which games to go to and get a group together. Sure a match in London would be good, but realistically there are only 2 options for it, Olympic and Wembley. It looks increasingly likely that Spurs could be playing Wembley again in 18/19 as their new stadium is behind schedule, and I imagine this far out that the second season option means nothing can be firmed up. And the Olympic stadium is a horrid stadium for rectangular sports (terrible Aussie expression but it works), having been there for the previous England v NZ match I would certainly not go again. Personally, I think it would have been interesting to take an international to St James' Park, build on the RL exposure from recent Magic events. The biggest concern anyone on these boards should have is what kind of shower turns up wearing the Kiwi jersey next year. The Kiwis seem to be going backwards at an alarming rate.
  3. Our new position in the EU

    Many ordinary working men and women are far more savvy than many so called smarter people given them credit for and know what's what. Freedom of movement is no friend of the unskilled and semi-skilled UK born population, it has simply increased competition for jobs, kept pay down and increased demand on public services. Many ordinary working class people have already had the rotten end of the stick since the EU was enlarged, the Brexit vote was their chance to do something about it. My view is you really cannot have an open door migration policy for 300 million plus EU nationals, plus all the sons and daughters of Italian and Spanish migrants in South America who have the right to come and live and work in the EU/ UK. Migration into the UK should be controlled based on what the country needs, and can afford (in terms of what additional funding is needed for public services etc), even more so as we move towards the era of increasing robotisation of the workplace. On top of which Freedom of Movement is a real headache in terms of law enforcement, just look at what the European parliament said recently about objecting to the UK demanding the right to run criminal record checks on new migrants from the EU post Brexit.
  4. Wigan sign Gabriel Hamlin

    And his mum is from Blackpool, so eligible for the England jumper if he's any good. Maybe that's the way to go beat the Aussies in the longer term, find good Aussie under 20's (cheap) with solid English blood lines and get them over in SL. Clubs benefit, so does the national side.
  5. Zak Hardaker suspended for positive drugs test

    What a proper charlie.
  6. Something is clearly not right in Tony Smith's world and the guy could do with taking a break from work. To go from Grand Finalists to playing Fev in less than 12 months with pretty much the same squad suggests all is not well at Warrington, he hasn't suddenly started feeling like this, it will have been coming on for a while and I can imagine the players picking up on it. Who wants to work for a boss who thinks what you do on a daily basis is effectively a load of rubbish? I'm sure the Fev players feel a bit sore about losing by so many points, but on the other hand, I'm sure they (and the other Championship sides) enjoy the chance to test themselves against the likes of Wire and Catalan and if Wire don't want to be playing the likes of Halifax or London, then there is an easy answer - perform where it matters. Same with the Dragons (that club has turned into a shambles in 2017). People wanted to deal with the dead rubbers which happened at the end of the season with licensing, so jeopardy was re-introduced into the mix. Now we have jeopardy, people are complaining that under-performing Superleague clubs futures are at risk from the system. What is a better system? One where the bottom 4 SL clubs have nothing to play for towards the end of the season, or one where they have to pull their fingers out and fight to retain their status in the elite competition? One where the top Championship sides get to play each other yet again, or one where they get chance to play SL clubs, benchmark themselves against the elite and pull in some extra hard needed cash to their businesses? Coming back to Wire, with all the exiting going on from that club and ensuing upheaval, they may well be playing in Fev again this time next year, along with the Dragons.
  7. People seem to be overlooking the fact that Tomkins isn't particularly good under the high ball, his preferred method of catching the ball being after it has bounced. That said I would still have him in the squad, along with Hardaker and Ratchford.
  8. The Death of the BIFF!

    Totally. Reminds me of when he was at Bath and he was sin binned for a no arm chop tackle and he just laughed at the absurdity of it as he walked off.
  9. The Death of the BIFF!

    Love the fact Sam asks the ref "what for?"
  10. So if Sale and Solomona were" quite willing to let the case run to trial, confident that they had done nothing wrong", how come they have settled now? Calling a huge dollops of Diamond BS on this one. What an unpleasant person. Best thing in all of this though is that Cas clearly don't miss Solomona. Not one bit.
  11. Definitely a step in the right direction. Seems like Eastmond might be able to return to RL after all, seeing that Superleague clubs can now afford to match his RU wages and only have 50% count against the cap. Whilst they were all in the same room, I'd like to think they had a review of the Cas v Solomona issue and had a look at the player contracts situation to do what is possible to avoid/ make it significantly harder for a player to do a Solomona in the future. Reading the RU trade press, seems they are quite keen to make use of the retirement get out clause if things go in Solomona and Sale's favour.
  12. Don't know the seriousness of the break, but this fellow fractured his leg not so long ago and will be playing rugby this weekend. Saint's clearly need to check whether Halewood International has a dairy farm in its portfolio!
  13. Future of Odsal

    An extra in any Mitchell & Kenyon remakes.
  14. Oh I think winning the World Cup (and by necessity beating the 'Stralians at least once) would be much bigger news and have greater transformational possibility. Let's face it we won a "comp" 12 months ago and I'm not sure that did a great deal for the game. The question mark about winning the World Cup would be whether or not the RFL would be capable of building on such a legacy.
  15. Let's face it KC isn't the brightest button in the box. Yes it will be an inconvenience to lose a couple of players for a bit, but as others have said, they will in all probability develop more as players in 12 days with England than they would do in 12 days at Cowley with Cunningham watching over them. And who's to say Saints will lose any players anyway. England have to compete next October they really do for the long term future of the game, and the test doesn't come bigger than the opening game on October 27th. The Aussies will have had another Origin series by that time, there is no space mid-season for Bennett to get his charges together for nearly 2 weeks and you cannot seriously expect England to compete off the back of one international against Samoa. Bennett won't have had any time with the squad post the 4 Nations and he clearly needs the players in camp before the season starts so that they can work on issues identified in the 4 Nations and set the playing group their targets for the season ahead. England has to perform and win meaningful things, ie beat the Aussies, before too long otherwise, well let's just say I love RL but for it to have a viable long term future in England, and that means getting more money into the sport, the national side has to be top of the table in the structure. And winning competitions. Hopefully this will be short term inconvenience for long term gain for all the SL clubs.