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Rugby League: A great Easter weekend of games

Dave Hadfield

I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a better Easter of games than this one.

Alright, the Bradford-Leeds game was more a case of drama than sheer quality, but that’s the sort of teams they are at the moment.

I watched the Hull derby in a pub in Wigan. Thanks to the people who hutched up for me. It was a belter, but I couldn’t be there and at the DW and I had a bit of an inkling that the Saints match could be a bit of a classic.

No disappointment there. It was a real marvel of a game and I must admit to feeling a little sorry for Saints coming away with nothing.

coconut 268x300 Rugby League: A great Easter weekend of games

As well as some great games, there was also time for coconut dancing

In an ideal world, I’d like to have been at Cas-Wakey as well – another fixture that more often than not produces the goods.

It was worth waiting for Saints-Cas though. If Saints were unlucky at Wigan, it was Cas I was in sympathy with at this one.

Plenty of compelling contests elsewhere, although Bradford’s 8-all draw at Catalans was largely ruined as a spectacle by the mere and pere of thunderstorms.

I think I benefitted this year from the rare treat of an Easter Saturday off. What to do? No contest, I’d have been expelled from the granddads’ union if I hadn’t taken the small folk to Coconut Dancing day at Bacup.

It was 25 years since I’d been, but it was just as I remember it and just as it should be – men in clogs dancing through the streets of Rossendale for close on 12 hours.

My grandson, who has previously shown an interest in becoming a rugby league prop forward, announced: “When I grow up, I want to be a Coconut Dancer.”

Me too, Ted, me too.

On Sunday, my son’s occasional football team beat Bolton School Old Boys in the annual match they play in memory of one of their number. The sun shone on the hillsides, there was a paddling pool full of cold beer and our goalkeeper made two or three incredible saves.

I don’t know which made me happier: that, the Nutters, or the quality of the rugby league that held it all together in a sandwich. Suffice it to say that, as long weekends go, it would take some beating.

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