Dear Division Two,
BAFA BUCS reducing your season down to six weeks was supposed to help you ensure you complete all your fixtures. Just because there are, including the rain week of 22 Jan, six weeks of season available on the far side of Christmas DOES NOT mean it was either intended, nor wise, for programmes to try to squeeze all or almost all of their fixtures into this time period.
With that said, lets check out the updates to this weekend’s fixtures:
Do Falcons Migrate?
Serious question. Many birds have migratory patterns, but it’s our understanding that most birds of prey tend to stick in place… David Attenborough’ll know.
We’re just wondering if migratory habits goes some way to explain why approaching the midpoint of the season the DMU Falcons appear to be without a home pitch, and thus having to postpone this weekend’s scheduled fixture against the MMU Eagles.
So… wait, the Eagles clearly have a nest…
Remember the Titans?
Cool, ‘cos we’re not sure we do, it’s been so long since they took the field!
By all appearances the UEL Phoenix (rebranded from Titans) will go into the Christmas break without a single fixture played.
Their ARU game was pushed back so the Rhinos could ensure they have appropriate field fashion.
Their Westminster game was shunted to the far side of Christmas due to the Dragons’ woes so far this season.
A hoped-for brought forward fixture against Essex was unable to be rescheduled courtesy of the two Athletic Unions proving unable to… well, pull their fingers out and sort it in time…
And now it appears as though their scheduled fixture this weekend will not go ahead, reportedly due to the Greenwich Mariners refusing to play the Titans unless the game is officiated by BAFRA officials rather than available BAFCA Level 1 qualified coaches. According to sources with knowledge of the issues between the two teams, this is due to bad blood between the programmes caused when the two teams met towards the end of last season, with both programmes accusing the other of misconduct and potential regulations breaches.
We contacted both programmes for statements.
Louis Oswald, Phoenix President shared:
“[The game] can’t be pushed back. It has to be played this weekend. Our Term 2 is packed and all games must be played by the 26th February.
Ellis Derham and his AU are refusing to play under level one coaches based on “health and safety”.
We want to play but it’s looking as if Greenwich are playing hardball and based on BUCS Rules 6.3-6.34 they should have to forfeit.
But as I have reiterated we want to play!
You’re also probably, not going to get an answer from [The Mariner’s President], as he’s apparently not involved in the arrangements for this game any more, and seems that the Greenwich AU don’t realise that he’s supposed to be the game day liason.
They have offered us two dates to play the game, but these are the 3rd of March which as stated before, can’t happen as the final week of regular season fixtures is the 26th February. But also the 22nd January, where some of our students haven’t returned to university yet but if they have, it’s during exam period.
Greenwich’s unwillingness to play this game on this Sunday apparently has links to the game last year where their players got injured. Even though this never happened and if you ask them for game tape to check, despite having someone record the game. It’s miraculously gone missing.
I’m happy to talk about Greenwich being a disgrace to BUCS ball and never have I seen a team so determined not to play a game!”
Meanwhile Ellis Derham, President of the Greenwich Mariners contacted us separately noting:
“We would like to work on a resolution. Both Students unions are dealing with the subject, I do not know the outcome yet. I am hoping an agreement can be made today.”
Therefore keep an eye out for if/when this one does go ahead. Things might get testy.
Hawoo hawomeless for the weekend
No drama here as Heriot Watt have already managed three of their fixtures and so should have no problems completing their season, but it’s likely very frustrating for the new boys in the Borders that despite having a £60 million home facility, they appear to be pitchless for this weekend at least!
Their game against Teesside Cougars will be pushed back until after the Christmas break. This gives Teesside a chance to lick their wounds after a challenging game against the Predators, while Hawoo will hawope their great momentum keeps up over the midseason gap.
[UPDATE] We’re hearing from HWU themselves that this game has been pushed due to the Scottish exam period, not a pitch issue. Apologies.
Will they/Won’t they – frolick in the autumn mist?
A dragon lives forever, but not so little boys
Painted wings and giant’s rings make way for other toys
One gray night it happened, Jackie Paper came no more
And Puff, that mighty dragon, he ceased his fearless roar
His head was bent in sorrow, green scales fell like rain
Puff no longer went to play along the cherry lane
Without his lifelong friend, Puff could not be brave
So Puff, that mighty dragon, sadly slipped into his cave
– Puff The Magic Dragon, by Peter, Paul & Mary
I LOVED dragons as a kid, and so definitely had a love/hate relationship with this song.
It mentioned dragons! Loved that. But once I grew old enough to pay attention to the lyrics? Damn son, that last verse is a tearjerker!
Some other dragons clearly fallen on hard times are those from Westminster University. Nominally, their intentions are for this weekend’s game to go ahead…
But we’ve been burned before. We’re hearing reports that the Dragons don’t have close to the number of players and coaches registered to be able to take to the field on Sunday, though there’s still a few hours left until the registration deadline for this weekend.
We can only think it’s a matter of time before these dragons are too forced to slip back into their cave. :'(
As such, best we can tell there are three (four) postponed fixtures coming into this weekend, all from Division Two.
DMU Falcons v MMU Eagles
Heriot Watt v Teesside Cougars
UEL Titans v Greenwich Mariners
Westminster Dragons v QMBL Vipers