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That Friday Feeling – 22nd December 2023

Today is a notable day in the calendar.

It is the shortest day of the year.

On 22nd December 1882 Edward H. Johnson, an associate of inventor Thomas Edison and the Vice President of the Edison Electric Light Company, became the first person to decorate a Christmas tree with electric lights at his home in New York City.

It is Caldy Supporter ‘Big Eddie’s’ birthday and today his age is reputedly somewhere 50 and 80 depending on who you ask.

It is also the day before the Championship’s northern derby fixture between Caldy’s Ravers and the Doncaster Knights.

Big Eddie’s mantra is “The Future isn’t what it used to be” and if the RFU’s recently announced plans for a franchise model for Premiership II come to pass then unfortunately Big Eddie’s mantra may be uncomfortably prescient. As it stands the RFU’s recently announced proposed franchise model for Premiership II appears to be based on factors other than merit including the requirement to have certain ground criteria including a stand.

Such criteria look likely to enable failed clubs like Wasps, Worcester and London Irish to be ‘phoenixed’ in to level 2 but potentially debar smaller clubs like Caldy and Ampthill who have risen to level 2 solely on merit, from succeeding with an application for a franchise place in Premiership II.

Recently the Championship clubs voted unanimously to reject this notion of a franchise model and if this solidarity is maintained then continuing good performances by the Ravers may ensure Championship level rugby is maintained at Paton Field for the future.

However, the best way for the Wirral public to show its support for Championship Rugby is to attend tomorrow’s pre-Christmas derby against Doncaster Knights in force and cheer the Ravers on to a win against one of the form teams in this year’s Championship.

Sitting in 2nd place behind Ealing, Doncaster have 5 wins from 6 games and will be looking to pick up a bonus point win at Paton Field to maintain their title challenge. It is up to the Ravers supported by a fulsome, feisty, festive and fractious home support to show our friends from Doncaster that Paton Field is a hard place to win.

Matt Cairns has selected the following squad for Saturday’s 1st XV Championship fixture at home against Doncaster Knights at Paton Field.  The match kicks off at 2 pm.

  1. A Aigbokhae 2. O Hearn 3. J Sprotson 4. T Sanders 5. M Gerrard 6. E Murphy
  2. C Booth 8. JJ Dickinson 9. C Pilgrim 10. R Hayes 11. B Jones 12. M Barlow 13. C Wilkinson
  3. N Royle 15. M Kilcourse 16. M Gallagher 17. R Higginson 18. M Weatherby 19 S Olyott
  4. L Cox 21. J Murray 22. M Cartmill 23. R Maasi White

On Boxing Day there is a great Charity Game  at Paton Field between Caldy under 25s v Caldy over 25s Kick off 1:30pm at Paton Field.

Bar open – raffle prizes – all proceeds will be donated to lymphoma action. Please come along to support our annual charity game on Boxing Day !

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