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'Disappointing' Baxter comments haven't landed well in Worcester

By Ian Cameron
Exeter DoR Rob Baxter (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Comments made by Exeter Chiefs director of rugby Rob Baxter to the BBC haven’t been entirely well received in some parts of the Gallagher Premiership.

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Worcester have been suspended from all competitions after failing to meet a Rugby Football Union deadline requesting proof of insurance cover and funding for the club’s monthly payroll at the start of the week.

The Warriors’ debts total more than £25million, including at least £6m in unpaid tax.

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Baxter, who previously stated that he believed there might be too many teams in the Gallagher Premiership, ventured on BBC Devon: “It’s hard to see them playing any more part in this Premiership season.

“I’m not thinking that this is something which can be sorted out in two or three weeks’ time,” said Baxter. “It’s probably going to shock some people the time it takes to work through.

“At some stage, when the decision gets made as to whether they will be returning or not, there will be an evening out process. But, realistically, how long can it go on for?

“The only thing that might get sorted out in two or three weeks is a decision that they’re not taking part in the rest of this season.”

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Some feel Baxter has overstepped the mark on his fellow Gallagher Premiership colleagues. One worst fan wrote: “Rob Baxter is a magnificent successful DOR. I’m not sure he has any expertise in the Administration period of Prem. rugby clubs or our situation. Perhaps a more appropriate question would be how much of Exe’s much vaunted occasional profit has come from SW Comms “sponsorship”?

Another described his comments as ‘disappointing’. “So much for the ‘rugby family’. Disappointing comments from Rob Baxter, is this him seeing the opportunity for a smaller premiership regardless of the cost to Warriors and others?”

Another Worcester-aligned account wrote: “Not too sure what these comments achieve apart from creating further anxiety for staff and players. I’d also take a guess they Rob has never been through an insolvency process before so has no idea what it involves. Very irresponsible and unhelpful comments.”

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Another account thought the comments might have been part of a ploy to lure some Worcester players to Sandypark. “A little nudge in trying to unsettle one or more of our players he would like to sign probably. Not very classy.”

Another observed: “The first point is it’s sod all to do with him. Unless he’s got inside info, he’s guessing. Secondly, why does he feel he needs to say any anything? Concentrate on your own issues!”

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