UPDATE: London Welsh promoted after winning appeal – RFU and Newcastle Statements
London Welsh have WON their appeal and will now be promoted to the Aviva Premiership for next season, with Newcastle Falcons relegated. Full story to come.
RFU Statement: London Welsh’s appeal against the decision that the club failed to meet the Minimum Standards Criteria, set out by the Professional Game Board, for promotion to the Aviva Premiership has been upheld by an independent panel. As a result, London Welsh are promoted to the Aviva Premiership and Newcastle Falcons relegated to the RFU Championship.
Newcastle Falcons Statement: We are extremely disappointed with the decision and the representations witnessed at the appeal hearing and we will leave our options open as to where we go from here.
In this new era everyone at the club will be committed to delivering a successful future and a first class experience at Kingston Park. After the disappointment of the decision coming out of the appeal hearing in London, we implore the region to get behind the club to prove what a wonderful and passionate region we are for rugby.
The last time the club was in a similar situation in 1996/97 we bounced straight back and won the Allied Dunbar Premiership trophy in 1997/98 and it is our ambition to replicate similar success.
We do not underestimate the competitiveness and challenges we face in the Championship but under the tutelage of Dean Richards we will have one, and only one goal – to win. Dean has been in this situation with Harlequins and he understands what it takes to navigate through the Championship, whilst putting together a team that will be successful with immediate effect on our return to the Aviva Premiership.
Winning rugby will be a habit at the Falcons and we expect to bring attacking and exciting play for our fans to enjoy. Add some semi-finals, finals and trophies to the mix and it will be a season to remember.
As a club rich in Premiership history and tradition we urge all of the region’s public, businesses and corporate bodies to get right behind the team and show the rest of rugby a message from this region.
Many of you have already committed for 2012-13, and for that we thank you. For all of you who are still wondering what you should do, commit to the Falcons, join the journey now and have the pride in being able to say “I was there at the new beginning.”