Ahead of their Week Thirteen Fixture versus the London Warriors, the Farnham Knights have announced their decision to forfeit this weekend’s fixture, with the goal of using the extra time away from the gridiron to rebuild their roster to best-complete the remainder of their season.
The forfeit follows the Knights’ 84-0 loss to the Warriors in Week Eleven, and back-to-back fixtures against the top team in the south would certainly have been a gruelling prospect for the young Knights roster, carrying a large proportion of rookies coming into 2018.
The Knights shared the following statement with DblCoverage.com:
Players, staff and supporters.
Following a meeting between senior players, coaches and team management post-practice yesterday, we had a long discussion about our current situation, and position moving into the last 4 games of the season.
We discussed our injury situation- this year has been tough on players already, with no let up in sight.
We discussed the fact that due to the late release of the schedule this year, some key players had booked holidays that have clashed with some fixtures.
We discussed the fact there is a certain big FIFA game that England at this point in time could participate in.
We also discussed the fact that other teams in our conference have made tactical moves this season.
The bottom line is, that even though the overwhelming feeling from the players was to play all 4 of our remaining fixtures, we realise that a ‘tactical forfeit’ as Bury did earlier in the season v the Warriors, is the smart thing to do. This tactical forfeit will keep us on a level playing field, it will give us another week to heal up, players away on holiday will be back and we will minimise the chance of collecting further injury, putting us in the best shape possible to win our remaining 3 home fixtures.
We would like to stress that this is a very reluctant decision, we recognise the benefits of playing against the top teams as the learning curve is beneficial provided the mental hurdles are overcome, but with no rest between the next fixture v Bury, the negative side of playing the Warriors seems more appropriate.
We hope you understand our position and we promise to make best use of this extra preparation time to kickstart the last 1/3 of the season.
The Knights players, coaches and management.