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The Road to Wembley Starts Here
Posted by southstander on March 15 2006 - 09:10:51

Here We Go Again

I love the Challenge Cup.

There are some who pour scorn on the only knock-out competition which features Superleague sides, but for me it is one of the highlights of the season. The fourth round draw, the travelling to out of the way places, and the quest for the final and lifting the silverware in a sudden death competition has all the excitement that you could wish for.

And...we are underway again in our quest for Wembley on the 26th August, possibly the first game to be played at our new national stadium.

But what purpose does it serve?

Primarily it is about entertainment. Our game exists solely for our entertainment. It isn't life or death, it isn't going to solve the worlds problems, it is there to pass the time between the humdrum of work, and get people away from their TV armchairs for a few hours once a week.

But the Challenge Cup is more than that. It is;

  • An important revenue stream for smaller clubs where success in the early rounds can earn amateur and national league sides as much as a sixty or seventy thousand pound payday.
  • National exposure on terrestrial TV with a sympathetic and enthustastic host in Clare Balding, something our game desperately needs.
  • An opportunity for players and coaching staff to take some time off from the pressures of Superleague.
  • A tradition that stretches back 109 years and which binds our professional and amateur games together.
  • A competition with a final that attracts sell out crowds at the biggest venues in the country and shows the pulling power of our game.
  • An attraction to sponsors to inject further cash into our game.
  • So those of you who are sceptical, wise up a little. This is the greatest competition that we have. It means a massive amount to players, coaching staff and supporters, as well as being a fantastic promotional tool for our great game. Get yourselves over to Centurion Park for the sunday 3pm kick-off on the 2nd April and help boost Leighs' coffers whilst cheering our lads into the next round.

    The Road to Wembley is back, bring it on!



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