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Exiled Townie

Southern Conference League

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First week of the new Southern Conference League saw the following results -

Hammersmith Hills Hoists 54 - 0 North Herts Crusaders

Wests Warriors 30 - 6 Eastern Rhinos

Hemel Stags 6 - 30 London Chargers

South London Silverbacks 24 - 16 Brixton Bulls

Cardiff Blue Dragons 14 - 48 Torfaen Tigers

Couple of eye brow raisers in there, didn't think North Herts would concede so many points and thought Hemel might have done better. Looking forward to the coming weeks.

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Jam Eater  1.(noun. jam eeter) A Resident of Whitehaven or Workington. Offensive.  It is now a term of abuse that both towns of West Cumbria use for each other especially at Workington/Whitehaven rugby league derby matches.

St Albans Centurions Website 

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2 hours ago, Exiled Townie said:

thought Hemel might have done better.

New Coach, New Players, New Kit, #EarlyDays - Yes, looking forward to the coming weeks.

Here's a picture of the all new Hemel Stags ARLC v London Chargers - 27.04.19 - at Pennine Way Stadium.

 

IMG_9016.JPG

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great game down at beckenham between the silverbacks and bulls very tough encounter played in the right spirt, few new faces at the silverbacks looking forward to seeing them gel and progress as a team this year. 

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Took myself to Cardiff, nice venue at Glamorgan Wanderers and about  70 in attendance which wasn’t bad with RU double header in the city

Torfaen looked a decent side and Cardiff never gave up. Will be interesting to see Torfaen at All Golds in two weeks time

Overall a good start for the league and whilst surprised about Hemel, the fact is they are a new team on the field and there are many positives there with multiple junior games taking place. It should also be remembered London Chargers have the best in the area for some time

Small acorns so far but this does have the potential to be the basis for what the South needs, slow growth 

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2 hours ago, groundhopper said:

Overall a good start for the league and whilst surprised about Hemel, the fact is they are a new team on the field and there are many positives there with multiple junior games taking place. It should also be remembered London Chargers have the best in the area for some time

Having seen both sides in pre-season, Hemel have a number of players from their pre-Dewsbury days, as well as some juniors coming through.  They know what they're doing, you can see that from the way they go into contact and the way they offload.  If you can get a clean tackle first time or you wrap the ball, that's not an issue but if you leave the arms free, they will move the ball on and that will tell across a game and will tell for them across the season.  The scoreline was surprising but shouldn't be alarming.

Generally speaking, there are several categories of players in this region and the gap between top and bottom can be huge.  The best teams are going to be the best teams because they have experience and advanced level skills, which is usually having excellent fundamentals.

In the lower levels, you can get somewhere just by getting some decent level union players who have good skills and are strong in the tackle area.  However, as you progress, you need better fundamentals and better team defence.  That might come from having players who've played it since they're kids, either in London or, even better, in an RL heartland.  Every team of that type benefits from people having experience who can talk while they're out there.  Some teams will be plucky, physical and maybe even clever but that experience gap from playing since you're a kid will count for something across an entire team.

If you watch Chargers (and Hammersmith and Wests), they don't let themselves get caught one-on-one.  If you run to a gap, two players close the gap.  If you try and hit up against one guy, the two come in around him and they won't let you offload.  Maybe you physically best them but then they won't let you get away.  When they have the ball, there's always support so they keep the ball alive and earn the extra metres that add up across a game.  Even without trying, they're such a slick operation because everybody knows what's going on out there.  Hemel's advantages aren't going to count against Chargers in that regard.  Chargers also have a speedy hooker called Dougie who puts everybody on the back foot.  If anybody has the answer to shutting him down, I'm all ears. 😂

And that's not to pick on anybody because most of us outside the niche clubs in London are in the same boat, working with a pool of players of mostly limited or no experience in Rugby League, which is why we fancied our chances in an extended league where we could all be competitive with each other.  The reality of being a League club in the South is that, every year, you have to work with some people who fancy it but don't know anything about it.  People who could be brilliant but are so green, they've never played the ball.

So when I say these things, some of you may read them and think "how bloody basic?", that's the reality of the situation.  The game itself on the field can be very different.  You don't see pro-style hookers, 13s generally run as second rowers and full backs tend to, well, full back.  I have great respect for Rob Ashton at Bedford Tigers.  Listen to the end of the League 1 Podcast from the 5th April (47:50ish onwards) and he talks about this sort of thing and why they're expanding the reach of their juniors across Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

Sorry, that turned into an essay.

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On ‎29‎/‎04‎/‎2019 at 00:13, bbfaz said:

What happened with the postponed game? 

Valley Cougars were unable to raise a team because most of them still have Rugby Union comitments.

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13 hours ago, Wiltshire Rhino said:

Valley Cougars 42-8 All Golds 

Torfaen Tigers 50-36 Swindon St George 

Looks like there's some quality in the Welsh community game, a good sign

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Week 2 results

North Herts Crusaders 16 - 28 Bedford Tigers

Eastern Rhinos 28 - 14 Hemel Stags

Valley Cougars 42-8 All Golds 

Torfaen Tigers 50-36 Swindon St George

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I was at North Herts/Bedford.  North Herts were really quick out of the traps, probably should have got two tries but only came away with one and a dropout.  Once Bedford settled into a pattern of play, they used their strike runners way more effectively and ground out two tries.  The third was just before half time where the Bedford scrum half chased down his own grubber but North Herts had lost their shape and were a bit all over the place at that point.

Second half was essentially 10-10 with some terrible weather late on.  North Herts gave away a couple of penalties at the wrong time.  They scored the first try of the half and, if they'd scored the second try of the half, they might have got something out of the match.  They knocked on deep in the Bedford half.  It was a general theme in the game that, once they were behind, there was a whiff of desperation about the Crusaders' play, whereas Bedford didn't look particularly flustered when they were under the cosh.  However, Bedford won it in the first half.

You know how I said the Chargers/Hemel result wasn't alarming?  Hemel should start feeling alarmed.

I'll put the Knights/Tigers A thoughts on the other thread.

Edited by bbfaz

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If you're in the area of North Wiltshire on Saturday... 

 

_20190506_180643.JPG

_20190506_180621.JPG

...then pop along to Swindon RFC to watch two games for the price of none! 😀 

The first game actually kicks off at 1.30. 

Edited by Wiltshire Rhino
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2014 Challenged Cup Winner

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So Hemel pull out of their Southern Conference game v Brixton citing player injuries. This is on the weekend where their East RL Team has no game either. Can’t raise one team is a pretty sad indictment of adult RL in Hemel. What’s going on? 

Edited by CambridgeBlue
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14 hours ago, CambridgeBlue said:

So Hemel pull out of their Southern Conference game v Brixton citing player injuries. This is on the weekend where their East RL Team has no game either. Can’t raise one team is a pretty sad indictment of adult RL in Hemel. What’s going on? 

Hemel in the Southern Conf lose their first two games then pull out of their third. Last week their A team pulled out of their first game of the season in the East League citing lack of players.  It does seem like something is not quite right at Hemel.  Maybe Hemel Stag has heard something.  I enjoy my trips to Hemel. 

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On 10/05/2019 at 22:00, CambridgeBlue said:

So Hemel pull out of their Southern Conference game v Brixton citing player injuries. This is on the weekend where their East RL Team has no game either. Can’t raise one team is a pretty sad indictment of adult RL in Hemel. What’s going on? 

Edited May 10 by CambridgeBlue

Seriously, I have no idea. I think they are being overly ambitious being in two cometitions and would be best targeting the new SL Conference IMO. I am glad i didn't book my train ticket in advance for Brixton. It looks like this game will be reorganised for early July.

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On 11/05/2019 at 12:27, Jasper said:

Hemel in the Southern Conf lose their first two games then pull out of their third. Last week their A team pulled out of their first game of the season in the East League citing lack of players.  It does seem like something is not quite right at Hemel.  Maybe Hemel Stag has heard something.  I enjoy my trips to Hemel. 

No, afraid not, no special insights here. Club are not very communicative on Twitter, Facebook, Website etc. I am not involved with the club in any official capacity. I would aspire to be a super fan, if only the information was more forthcoming! I too enjoy a trip out to Pennine Way. Watching RL in the sunshine. 

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As they didn’t play their East RL fixture v Brentwood today I suspect they get removed from that league. Leaves them to concentrate on the CLS

Edited by CambridgeBlue
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Tweeted from the London Broncos Supporters Association

#SouthernConferenceLeague Results !

 

EAST:

@BedfordTigers 24-10 @EasternRhinos

@HoistsRLFC 12-12 @LonChargersRL

@HemelStagsRL 16-6 @slsilverbacks

WEST:

@TorfaenTigersRL 22-30 @ValleyCougarsRL

@CardiffRL 20-30 @allgoldsrugby

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I don't think I've ever been quite as wet as I was yesterday at Pennine Way. My hoodie was so wet that it was absorbing all the sound. Somebody was talking to me and I couldn't hear a word from about 2 m away.

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On 05/05/2019 at 14:26, bbfaz said:

You know how I said the Chargers/Hemel result wasn't alarming?  Hemel should start feeling alarmed.

I watched the Hemel Stags v London Chargers Game. In the first half Hemel Stags had good technique, to their credit, but they ran out of steam In the second half. The Chargers looked fitter and were able to maintain their intensity.

IMG_9016.JPG

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13 hours ago, bbfaz said:

I don't think I've ever been quite as wet as I was yesterday at Pennine Way. My hoodie was so wet that it was absorbing all the sound. Somebody was talking to me and I couldn't hear a word from about 2 m away.

Any idea why the result has been removed from the Rfl website?

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On 18/05/2019 at 23:53, CambridgeBlue said:

As they didn’t play their East RL fixture v Brentwood today I suspect they get removed from that league. Leaves them to concentrate on the CLS

Has just sunk in that they haven't played a game in the three weeks the East RL has been playing. If they fail to fulfil next Saturdays cup game at North Herts, maybe they will/should be removed from the East RL. 

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36 minutes ago, Jasper said:

Has just sunk in that they haven't played a game in the three weeks the East RL has been playing. If they fail to fulfil next Saturdays cup game at North Herts, maybe they will/should be removed from the East RL. 

they have withdrawn now from the East league

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19 hours ago, Hemel Stag said:

I watched the Hemel Stags v London Chargers Game. In the first half Hemel Stags had good technique, to their credit, but they ran out of steam In the second half. The Chargers looked fitter and were able to maintain their intensity.

IMG_9016.JPG

I was talking about losing to Eastern Rhinos... 

I've seen Hemel twice in the flesh now. My view hasn't changed. They've retained or won back a significant number of pre-Dewsbury players. They're composed in contact, they know what they're doing. They're probably going to finish fourth or fifth if they can keep it on the rails.  However, from what somebody else told me, they did have some cross-coders, which surprised me.

One thing that I said to one of their coaches on Saturday was that they're probably going to put a beating on somebody at some point soon. Both sides made mistakes within the opposition's 20, both sides defended well within their own 20.

If they're genuinely pieing off the East League, which is frustrating on one level, it's probably for the best.   They need to complete this season for the good of the club.

Edited by bbfaz
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