Blog: The London Eye
The Tetley’s Challenge Cup was in London this week – but not in its usual place on display at Wembley in August.
It was down in west London at Chiswick where the South West London Chargers were taking on Welsh champions Torfaen Tigers in the first round of the 2014 competition. It was a great day for the side who are barely 12 months old, and the trophy was down there to give it that extra bit of magic to the proceedings.
It was a terrific game, the Chargers winning 12-6, and the whole atmosphere was captured by the Digital Media Unit of the RFL in the shape of Adam Treeby who was also in charge of the iconic trophy. After a horrendous journey down from Leeds, Treebs spent Friday night sleeping with it in the heart of rugby union territory at the Marriott hotel next to RFU HQ in Twickenham.
Just imagine if it had gone missing like the World Cup all those years ago? It doesn’t bear thinking about. We managed to get through the whole day without dropping it – although my quip to Red Hall about the dent hardly showing didn’t go down to well with some in the media department.
OK, so the trophy was due at the Super League launch on Monday and naturally they were a bit sensitive but I was joking honest!!
There was more good news for Rugby League in London when the Croydon Hurricanes Under-16s who won the Young Team of the Year Award at the East Sussex and Surrey Media Sports Awards. The lads had a terrific season, becoming League Champions, Challenge Cup Winners and Minor Premiers losing only one match all season.
They’re off to Warrington on February 15th to play a series of friendlies so good luck to them. I’m sure those boys from south London will acquit themselves well.
All the Broncos boys were on top form at the Super League launch with Kieran Dixon popping up everywhere - and getting into other players’ selfies. He impressed the people from Brut with his juggling of several cans of their product while they filmed him.
There’s a Broncos Fans Forum up at The Hive on Saturday afternoon which I will be refereeing, sorry hosting. Blake Solly, Director of Standards and Licensing for the RFL, and Gus Mackay, Chief Executive of the London Broncos will be fielding the fans’ questions and if the ones I’ve already received are anything to go by, it should be a lively session.
I’m looking forward to hearing Blake talk about the exciting new re-structuring of Super League in 2015 – should be worth going along for that alone.
Hearing about all the chaos that the Tube strike has caused this week I couldn’t help thinking about all those people (mainly those who live up North) who reckon that to be successful, a London Super League club needs to be on a Tube line. Clearly these people have never heard of Bob Crow or weekend engineering works.
We also saw a first glimpse of the new Broncos kit this week. I think it’s an improvement on last year’s and given that the initial sketches I saw had red shorts and white socks, it’s a relief.
Sorry to hear that Premier Sports won’t be covering Championship games this season – I really looked forward to those games, even more than the NRL! What’s Ian Ramsdale of BBC London going to do with his Thursday evenings now?