RICHMOND RUGBY STATEMENT: PROMOTION CONFIRMED
The RFU has today confirmed our Richmond Men's First XV will be promoted back to the Championship for the 2020/21 season.
Following an extensive review by the RFU, the governing body confirmed that the final standings for the Championship and men’s and women’s community matches would be calculated on a best playing record formula, maintaining promotion and relegation for those leagues. Click here for the RFU statement and final league positions.
Richmond at the time of the league cancellation, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, were seven points clear at the top of the National League 1 table, having won 20 of 25 matches, and maintained top position in the league for 18 weeks out of 25.
RFU President, Peter Wheeler, said: “We believe that the decisions made provide fair and balanced outcomes for the game and maintain the integrity of the competitions. We have listened to recommendations from the heart of the game and the approach has been ratified by the RFU Council.
“This has been a difficult decision to make in the most unprecedented of circumstances. There is no single solution that will suit every club, but the approach taken is one that we believe best reflects the nature of league rugby in England. With 80% of the season complete for the community game, we believe our approach is fair and the right one for our leagues. We have clubs that are clear league leaders and those who have said they would benefit from relegation to play more meaningful rugby.”
The decision to accept promotion back to the Championship, where Richmond last featured for three seasons from 2016/17 to 2018/19, is one the club has made following a detailed consultation with the playing group, coaches and board. We are confident through maintaining our playing model and club ethos, and despite the current situation facing all community clubs and the country in general, we will be ready for another exciting season.
John Heaton, Richmond Rugby Chairman, said: “To be promoted back to the Championship at the first time of asking is a fantastic achievement for our club and wonderful recognition for our playing group, coaches and support staff who have worked extremely hard to get to this point.
“We are obviously disappointed that we didn’t get to finish our season in the right way, but these are extremely unique circumstances for us all, and our thoughts remain with everyone affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. We urge our community to stay safe and follow the latest government advice.”
On looking back at the success of the 2019/20 season, John said, “I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has contributed to our fantastic success this season, in particular our players, coaches and staff, led by Director of Rugby Steve Hill and first-team captain Cameron Mitchell, who have all shown enormous dedication to our club.
“To maintain our lead at the top of the league after 25 matches is a huge effort and I would like to express my gratitude to our club sponsors, members, volunteers and supporters who have made this wonderful achievement possible. We look forward to reigniting some old rivalries in the Championship next season.”
Richmond Women Update: Tyrrells Premier 15s
With no promotion or relegation from the Tyrrells Premier 15s, we understand the RFU’s decision to declare the 2019/20 season null and void.
We look forward to the RFU’s decision as to the outcome of the tender process for participation in the league in 2020/21.
For the latest COVID-19 government advice and information please CLICK HERE.