Looking around the internet and Twitter this afternoon, most Falcons fans seem happy that we will most likely be playing Premiership rugby next season, since London Welsh have not satisfied stadium criteria.
Many are philosophical – we deserved to be relegated but won’t turn down this reprieve.
Myself and wor lass were sitting in sunny Regents Park with a picnic when my brother texted me the news, so I was already in a good mood, but in the cold light of day I feel a bit flat.
Two possible reasons:
1) I gave up caring which division we play in next season a couple of days after the Wasps game.
2) This decision on London Welah goes against the competitive principles of sport that I consider sacred.
As my article about relegation a couple of months said, I believe relegation needs to stay.
And not with franchises and licences, but decided by performances on the pitch. We (or at least I) do not go to rugby to watch directors, administrators, or even managers. I certainly don’t go because I will be able to go to the toilet quickly at half-time.
I go to watch the players. If London Welsh (or Cornish Pirates for that matter) win the playoffs then for me they deserve to a crack at the Premiership. That a committee sitting around a table say they cannot have it does not sit easy with me.
I’m not going to go through all the arguments, but I believe that a team’s fate should be decided by its results on the pitch, not by meeting some arbitrary and hypocritical stadium rules.
The Rotherham case in 2002 was wrong and so is this. But since the rules are here to stay, hopefully Welsh, Pirates and others will meet them ASAP to stop this farce happening again.
Of course, if the Falcons do play in the Premiership come September then I will be there cheering them on as usual.
But I hope that next season’s rollercoaster of emotions turns out to mean something come a year’s time.
(Follow The South Stand Choir on Twitter: @SouthStandChoir)