Guasch fury with Challenge Cup draw

Catalans Dragons President Bernard Guasch is furious that his club faces an additional away game following last week’s Coral Challenge Cup draw.

Under pressure to finance air travel to and from the UK for a redrawn Super League fixture list, Guasch is angry that his club now face another expensive trip.

The Dragons were drawn to play Wakefield Trinity at Huddersfield on August 22nd in a special sixth round designed to cater for the withdrawal of Championship clubs from the competition.

The Cup clash is on the same date Catalans were due at Belle Vue for the league clash that was postponed by bad weather in February. This game has now been postponed for a second time.

Guasch told Perpignan newspaper L’Indépendant: “The competition cancelled the Magic Weekend this year and it made up for it with its magic draw.

“How do the four clubs which were to qualify for the quarter-finals find themselves today playing an extra round, while at the same time, six other teams are already in the quarter? It makes me angry, it’s the biggest hoax I’ve seen.”

Guasch, the owner of a meat processing business near Perpignan, added: “I tell myself that they take us for Paris hams or Mireille sausages.

“We end up with one more game and still this postponed game against Wakefield to play I do not know when.

“We are all angry and I hope that the players will be able to give the best answers on the pitch.”
Dragons coach Steve McNamara agreed with his Chairman that the additional fixture was a major burden, both financially and from a player welfare perspective.

“I’ve said all along, we appreciate that it is an incredibly complex process to reset the season and some teams will have it more difficult than others.

“But this additional game will hit us particularly hard. As a playing group, all we can do is face up to the challenge and put any of our feelings and frustrations into our performances.”

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