Ryan questions Bath team rotation

Discussion in 'Aviva Premiership / LV Cup' started by getofmeland, Dec 31, 2007.

  1. getofmeland

    getofmeland Guest

    Ryan questions Bath team rotation
    Gloucester director of rugby Dean Ryan has criticised Bath's decision to make wholesale changes at the weekend.

    The clubs, who are first and second in the Premiership, meet on Friday.
    However, Bath's defeat at Wasps after making 11 changes means there is now daylight between the West Country rivals at the top of the table.
    "I'd never rest players I thought would mean I couldn't win a game. I can't send a side out which I don't think can win. I'd never do that," Ryan said.
    Bath's 25-10 reverse to Wasps means they are now five points off Gloucester in first place.
    And they will need a bonus-point win by at least 26 points while denying their visitors four tries if they are going to bridge the gap at the Rec on Friday evening.
    Head coach Steve Meehan claimed there was no "grand scheme" behind the rotation between the Leeds win and Wasps defeat which saw seven internationals drop out.
    Hooker Lee Mears and half-backs Michael Claasens and Butch James sat out the trip to Adams Park, while skipper Steve Borthwick and Olly Barkley were on the bench.
    But Meehan, who blamed the impact of Christmas for the overhaul of the team, will be reverting to his strongest possible XV for Friday.
    "We'll be making changes, obviously," he told BBC Radio Bristol.
    "We have a short turn around and we've got to bring guys back who didn't play as a result of a few little niggles and bits and pieces, but I'm sure that they'll be fighting fit for the weekend.
    "And we can get some good work in in the beginning of the week because a number of players will be nice and fresh."
    Full-back Nick Abendanon, who survived the cull, added: "Around this Christmas period it's a pretty hectic time with three games in a short period.
    "And playing the same team week-in, week-out with such a long season can also take its toll so we've got players throughout the squad who can easily step in and step up.
    "Obviously Gloucester's a big derby clash and they're on top of their game.
    "That's going to be the match that we're focusing on putting our full-strength side out and getting back on a winning track."
    The strength in depth in Ryan's squad is the envy of most coaches in the Premiership and the Cherry and Whites boast a host of big names following a summer splurge on new talent.
    But former England international Simon Halliday, who is a non-executive director at Bath, has questioned the transparency of Gloucester's recruiting process.
    "The salary cap has not been dealt with and I'm going to engage the game about how we go forward with a level playing field," the Rugby Football Union Council and Club England member told the Guardian.
    "Bath have been at a massive disadvantage because it has adhered to the rules.
    "I know who has broken them and I probably know by how much.
    "When we play Gloucester at home we are up against a team which is significantly better financed than Bath. I do not propose to allow that to happen any longer.

    Story from BBC SPORT:
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    Well the Bath Fans were asking the same question, if you look at the top 3 sides this weekend they all put out weak teams and lost. Bath could of won at Wasps as they didn't look of the standard they did last season, it would probably put them level on points with Gloucester going into next weeks game. Now Bath are now 5 points of the lead, going into the game the best they can hope for is getting back on level terms with Gloucester...
     
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  3. Vambo

    Vambo Guest

    I doubt that Bath will pay too much attention to what Ryan says but I reckon Gloucester (and others) might be a bit more interested in what Halliday has said.
     
  4. getofmeland

    getofmeland Guest

    That is an extremely confident statement to make, and it could be damaging if proven to be correct... It is well known certain clubs get better benefits than others in the league, the question is when is this going to be dealt with, and what will happen to the teams involved... if anything ever comes to light over it?
     
  5. danny

    danny Guest

    The fact that Gloucester are a well financed team is not in doubt the question is are they operating outside of the salary cap. No-one knows for sure but the size and quality of the squad is sure to make peole ask questions. If Gloucester have broken the rules they deserve to be punished but i imagine nothing will happen as it is very easy for clubs to pay players through second parties and difficult to prove. That is the problem with salary caps they are open to abuse.
    Also its a bit rich for Bath to be having a go at Glos for not playing by the rules in a financial sense cause its not long ago that Bath were operating as a professional club in the amature era. Funny how things turn around.
    As for what Ryan said i have to agree, why put out a side to lose. Bath could have gone to Wasps and had a good chance of winning and been top of the league if they beat Glos on Friday. I suppose the only time to judge is at the end of the season. Im sure if Bath lose out on the play-offs by 1 point they will regret playing a weakend side at Wasps when they were in a purple patch of form.
     
  6. Bullitt

    Bullitt Guest

    It's common knowledge that a top player for any club will get the bulk of their salary from their sponsor rather then wages through the club itself (Leicester were even doing it at the end of the ametuer era) and it happens everywhere.

    The best way to change the trend will be to scrap the wage cap all together. No worriesw about breaking the rules then. Plus, Wasps and Bath wouldn't have their squad on the RFU payroll so the rest of the league wouldn't be playing second fiddle.
     
  7. stormmaster1

    stormmaster1 Guest

    I wouldn't expect the Glos salary cap to be too big an issue. Their side is mostly homegrown talent, and players like Lamb are probably cheaper to the club than a player of similar standard from outside. I suspect that Glos are mostly reaping the rewards of their young talent. i wonder how many may find contracts elsewhere in the next few years.
     
  8. Cusker

    Cusker Guest

    Wish Bristol had the depth to be able to do this. But young homegrown lads should have to chance to put on there home teams shirt. To many overseas players in the prem at the moment pushing the homegrown talent away. It's almost like the clubs are taking a quick fix approach by bringing in overseas players and not taking the long road of bleeding youngsters in to the first team and sending the to the lower leagues.
     
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