Well the season isn’t over yet for the club but due to work commitments it is for me; well as far as live games are concerned anyway. Saturdays loss to Sale Sharks was probably my last home game so unless we make the European Challenge (Amlin) Cup final or the Aviva Premiership semi-final I will have to wait until August to see my team run out again. This means that I am going to miss such gems as the Stinger at Twickenham or the home Amlin cup quarter final both against Gloucester Rugby. Of course I will still be able to follow the games on twitter, or more likely catchup in the morning due to the time difference, but it wont be the same.
This season the club have targeted a top six finish, which up until the last few matches was looking probable, but a drop in form, coinciding with international call-ups and injuries, now means that we have a bit of an up hill struggle ahead of us. Currently in seventh and only one point ahead of Bath, we are 8 points behind Sale Sharks.
I have followed London Wasps for a few years now starting back when Lawrence Dallaglio was still captain. Although I wasn’t at Twickenham I remember well the 2008 Premiership win which allowed him to finish his playing career at the very top.
Since then there has been a lot of transition and, it is safe to say the results have not been as good as hoped. However the real low point came at the end of the 2011/2012 season when we finished just 1 point above relegation leaving Newcastle Falcons to take the drop. Our very last game was against Newcastle and although they beat us it wasn’t by enough points; they won the battle but lost the war!
I don’t recall the exact numbers but I believe we lost three or four senior players to injury forced retirement and had something like two thirds of the first team on the treatment table. This was Dia Young’s first season as Director of Rugby, he really must of wondered what he had taken on. I recall matches where London Wasps were forced to scrape around the lower divisions simply to be able to put a team out! But this was also the year of Joe Launchbury, Christian Wade and Billy Vunipola who stepped up to the mark and helped to save the premiership position.
2012/2013 saw things come together a little better and although there was still a long way to go a more comfortable eighth place finish was achieved. The year also saw the business side of the club stabilised. Following the decision of Steve Hayes to sell up not only were things difficult on the pitch, the business faced bankruptcy. But with new owners stepping in finally everything was on the up.
And so to this season. Currently 7th, but with six games to play there is still the possibility of achieving the 6th place finish that has been targeted. I had hoped to see it, but as I say I will following the run in on Twitter!
Good luck @WaspsRugby. Once a wasp, always a wasp!