MATCH OFF: Lions East Midlands Cup semi-final called off

Peterborough Lions celebrate their East Midlands Cup success last season.
Peterborough Lions celebrate their East Midlands Cup success last season.
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Peterborough Lions big cup match against Kettering this afternoon (February 24) was called off because Kettering claimed they couldn’t raise a side.

The semi-final was due to take place at Solstice Park, Bretton, but Kettering, who play a league below the Lions, claimed they only had four players available from the side that beat Leighton Buzzard in a league match the previous weekend.

Kettering are still keen to play the game and have offered March 17 as a possible date. The East Midlands RFU will rule on the matter and if they decide to award the tie to the Lions it will mean a repeat performance of last year’s final with Midlands Premiership side Lions taking on Midlands Division One table-toppers Bedford Athletic. The Lions won last year’s final 27-11.

Part of a statement from Kettering issued to the East Midlands RFU read: “Unfortunately we have come to the conclusion that we cannot fulfil our East Midlands Cup game against Peterborough Lions on Saturday February 24.

“We have just four players available from the side that played Leighton Buzzard last weekend and we have got just two front row available who are registered.

“We do want to play this game and would like to ask the East Midlands RFU and Peterborough Lions whether they would allow the game to be postponed until Saturday March 17 when hopefully we would be in a better position with players availability.

“The club in its long history has never had to concede a first XV game before so this decision has not been an easy one even just to ask to change the date of the game.

“We will await your decision and will abide with whatever that decision may be.”