After Varsity opens at the Super Wednesday day of events on March 20th, attention will turn to the first stand-alone event of the series, Rugby League at Lady Bay, taking place the following Thursday (28th March) at 18:30. Last year’s edition saw Nottingham run out convincing winners against their rivals from Nottingham Trent, claiming a 30-6 win on a sweltering Sunday afternoon last May. Rugby League has proved to be one of the most competitive events in the course of Varsity’s existence, with the Green and Gold having a slight edge in the overall record, winning six of eleven encounters since 2008, including the last two meetings.
The 2018-19 campaign has proved to be a rough one for UoN, with the side claiming two wins out of ten in their BUCS Premier North fixtures, in home victories back in October against Hull and Leeds, leaving them at the foot of the table. In the meantime, the Green and Gold have had to endure some thrashings too, including two defeats to second place Leeds Beckett in the league and cup by seventy points.
“It should be a close game”
Their cross-town rivals have a similar story to tell, however. Over in the Premier South, Trent sit bottom of the table with three wins, although they were able to claim victory in their most recent fixture against Loughborough. They have had heavy defeats of their own too though, including a 54-12 reverse against the same opposition in October and a 58-6 defeat at Bath in December (who UoN recently defeated in a cup competition).
We spoke to Joseph Andrews, the Publicity Secretary of our Rugby League side, and asked for his thoughts for the game. He said ‘it should be a close game and one that will be fun to watch. When everyone is cheering you on it adds to the game and if we play to our full potential we should win’.
“The support of the UoN faithful will be crucial to their chances”
So, the 2019 edition looks set to be another competitive fixture in the tradition of the contests that have played out in the history of its running as a Varsity event. Both teams have comparable records for the season, but the Green and Gold’s recent successes in this event should put them in a good position to claim an unprecedented third consecutive triumph and a crucial point that would take them a step closer to an eighth consecutive series win for Nottingham. The support of the UoN faithful will be crucial to their chances, so get down to Lady Bay to roar them to what would be a vital Varsity victory next Thursday.