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“Judgement Day” proves ironic

By Dave Snowden  ·  March 30, 2013  ·  Rugby

Enterprising marketing by the WRU today with a double header match involving all four Welsh regions in the Millennium Stadium.  They all turned out to be close matches and the overall audience was around twice what it would have been if the two matches had been held in the home stadiums.  More could have been done to make it a bigger day out and the merchandise was limited.  There was still a feel good factor from the defeat of the English two weeks ago and some residual traces of the atmosphere.  Unfortunately the train service had added no carriages and I had a very uncomfortable ride in from Filton Abbeywood, cuts and constraints make it difficult for different institutions to really show enterprise across borders.

I was sat next to the people I sit next to in the Arms Park, so that was a nice gesture as we have formed a good group over the year.   The final match was somewhat spoiled by some pretty nasty comments from a group of Scarlets supporters behind me.  For the second match we had Nigel Owens, acknowledged as one of the worlds top, if not the top referee.  A few years ago he came out which was a brave thing to do in a Rugby community.  The comments behind were on the edge throughout, not overtly homophobic which could have been handled, but just generally nasty.  It left a slightly sour taste in what was otherwise a good day.

Not sure about Judgement Day as a title though, as got home news was trickling through of a major dispute erupting between the WRU and the Regions.  However This report (added Sunday) summarises it. There seems to be a self-destruction button in Welsh Rugby.  Back in the 80's we condemned ourselves to two decade long wilderness period before we finally competed again.  Now, as the most successful nation in the Norther hemisphere for the last decade the same unresolved conflicts start up again.