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Hopping Mad

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Everything posted by Hopping Mad

  1. A few seasons ago, I went to watch a Mowden Park RU game (against Sheffield Tigers) at Darlington Arena. I counted about 250 spectators. Had a good poke about before the match. Up on the back row, you could see the number of leaks in the roof. MPRU paid about £1.9m for DA - well over half what they got for selling their former ground to a housing developer. Insane. I'd say, rugby league-wise, the Carlisle ship sailed long ago. When Carlisle RLFC were doing well, there was a Carlisle & District ARL comp that, at its peak, extended to two divisions. All gone now. A football team - Carlisle City - now play at the Gillford Park ground the RL club developed, with three stands, after being kicked out of Brunton Park by Carlisle United FC. It'd be a hell of a struggle to establish rugby league in either Edinburgh or Glasgow. Union thrives in neither.
  2. There are seats at the arena that have never seen a backside.
  3. Be wonderful if we could have the correct spelling of Middlesbrough. For me, Hartlepool would be the best location for a second NE pro club.
  4. https://www.raidersrugbyleague.co.uk/post/wigan-warriors-superstar-flower-joins-the-coaching-team-at-the-raiders
  5. Always thought this one - featuring the RL logo mentioned above - was pretty cool...
  6. Mark at printaprogramme.com does football programmes (£4 including p+p). Can't see why, if asked, he wouldn't do rugby league programmes.
  7. A reflection of the RFU's financial position?
  8. Sadly, two in the space of a few days from the speedway world: Colin Pratt, 82 and Alan 'Big Al' Grahame, 67. Earlier this year, Pratt - at various times a rider, a team manager, a promoter and an administrator - became the first inductee into the Speedway Hall of Fame.
  9. Great memories. Superstars would never be allowed now. All that valuable, highly insured flesh. Keegan is from Armthorpe, by the way, not Scunny.
  10. They did. A 32-pager for £2. Cougars managing director Lisa Gill told me Keighley weren't allowed (an RFL Covid diktat, presumably) to sell programmes at the start of the season. By the time they were, she said, they didn't deem it worthwhile. I'd upload an image but, however small I make it, this website won't play ball.
  11. I searched in vain on the RFL website for anything about this event... Compare and contrast amateur rugby league's lack of central funding to the comparatively generous financial support the RFU gives its grassroots clubs. Without that support (which pays for a lot of the travelling), the rugby union pyramid in England wouldn't exist, certainly not in its present structure.
  12. I'd say plugging the gap between Newcastle and York would be a good starting point. Given the success of the North East Amateur Rugby League, there is a decent base from which to build. In and around Teesside, a semi-pro rugby league club would probably have more chance of success in Hartlepool than in Middlesbrough or Stockton.
  13. Had a chat, pre-match, with one of the Keighley officials. She said they'd be disappointed if they didn't get a thousand. I estimated about 1,200. The official figure is probably right.
  14. Went along to this, as a neutral. Glad I made the effort. An enthralling game with a sting in its tail. I felt Doncaster deserved to win. They looked stronger in the last 15 minutes. Did Keighley's efforts at Workington last Sunday take a toll? Admission was £13.50 (main stand seat, a £1.50 saving for advance booking) and a 32-page programme - Keighley's first and last of the season - sold for £2. The attendance was 1,128.
  15. According to @Cougarmania, Keighley are issuing their first - and only - 2021 programme (£2) for tomorrow's League One play-off eliminator with Doncaster. Available from the club shop.
  16. The former Super League Rugby executive chairman has been unveiled as National League (fifth tier) Stockport County FC's non-executive chair. A few weeks ago, Elstone joined PwC as a part-time senior adviser in the accountancy firm's sports business advisory team.
  17. As I said, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. On the whole, I prefer hills and scenic views to trees, however beautiful (or old) they might be.
  18. That's a big claim! I've been to Pontypool Park. Not hugely impressed with its setting. In terms of scenery and attractiveness of location, I'd put one or two of the Scottish Borders RU grounds - Jed-Forest and Melrose, certainly - well ahead of Pontypool RU. I'd say there's a few amateur rugby league clubs in more favourable locations than Pontypool RU: Elland, Kells (the Pit Field), Saddleworth Rangers, Underbank Rangers, Wath Brow Hornets. Beauty in the eye of the beholder, of course. Just been in South Wales (near Abergavenny) for a fortnight, as it happens. Called in on Abertillery RU. Looked like another once sizeable Valleys club in one-man-and-a-dog terminal decline.
  19. During the union off season, Flower can turn out for Pontypool-based Torfaen Tigers ARLFC. Or won't he fancy it if he isn't getting paid? Looks like Pontypool RU are splashing a bit of cash to get back to a decent level in the Welsh pyramid. Probably the main reason Flower was attracted to them.
  20. You could also add, from 2013 to 2019 (to include your 'last full open season'), attendances in football's National League (i.e. tier five) have increased, year on year.
  21. I'd say one of the big differences between football and rugby league is the former is growing (and is only too clearly capable of growing) its audience year on year whereas, sadly and conversely, the latter's audience appears to be shrinking rapidly.
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