The wait is nearly over....

First published in Latest Blogs Worcester News: Photograph of the Author by

It’s been a while since the end of the season and I have tried to give myself some rugby free weeks so as to appreciate the resumption of the Rugby season all the more.

I have spent some time watching cricket, both on TV and live at New Road. How Kabir Ali in not in the England squad is beyond me. But cricket is just a diversion until the main event.

The guys at work are talking about the Charity Shield match on 17th Aug but I will be giving that a miss as on the 16th The Warriors, along with all the other 11 Guinness Premiership sides, The Cardiff Blues, Leeds Carnegie, Newport Gwent Dragons and The Army, will be taking part in the Middlesex Sevens at Twickenham and on the 17th the Warriors have a pre-season friendly against the Doncaster Knights at their home ground, Castle Park.

I’m going to Twickenham as that is always a good day out and I am really pleased that the tournament has been opened up to non Guinness Premiership teams again, it adds variety to the event. The Army have won the trophy a couple of times and as The Warriors came 2nd last year I am hoping that they can go one better this year.

This week saw the much awaited arrival of Chris Latham in Worcester. He is legendary as a Full Back and is quite close to being the best Full Back in the World at the moment. He seems very keen on his move to Worcestershire from Queensland and Warrior fans everywhere are ‘quite’ pleased he is going to wear Gold and Blue.

He is bringing some footage of the Super 14 games to help his new team mates understand the ELV’s (Experimental Law Variations) which are being trialled in English Rugby and all over the Northern Hemisphere this season after already being applied to games in the Southern Hemisphere this year. I for one am not too happy about these ELV’s as they seem to be changing the nature of Rugby Union more towards Rugby League. There are those who think my attitude is alarmist but having watched a few Super 14 and Tri-Nations games I am not convinced of the necessity for these particular law changes.

The ELV’s seem to be being applied to the parts of the Union game that define it’s difference to League in that the contact area, lineout and maul all have come in for specific law changes to curtail the action in these areas.

The Warriors have employed former Welsh Ref Hugh Watkins on a consultancy basis to further ensure that they are on the money regarding the ELV’s. It’s a very good move in my opinion. I don’t think there will be many stones unturned by the other teams in the league regarding the law changes so any help has to be positive.

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