Bedford Blues boss Mike Rayer seeks Premiership shake-up

Bedford boss Mike Rayer has called for a reassessment of the criteria for promotion to the Premiership.

The Blues, Championship , would be unable to claim a top flight place as the rules stand.

"Who knows? The criteria's not been challenged recently," Rayer told BBC Three Counties Radio.

"We'd like to be putting pressure on the authorities to sincerely look at how this criteria's been set up."

The criteria, drawn up by the Professional Game Board, lays out numerous standards a club must aspire to in order to win promotion.

A minimum stadium capacity of at least 10,000 would hamper Bedford, whose Goldington Road home falls 4,000 short of the quota.

The last side to miss out on promotion because of the rules were Rotherham in 2002, but Rayer believes a successful club could push for change this season.

"As it stands we know our fate, but nobody's ever got into that position [since Rotherham] to challenge it," he said.

"This year could be a case that the two sides in the Championship final don't meet the Premiership criteria, so I think that needs to be looked at.

"But we can't control at this moment in time, we've just got to concentrate on what's in front of us."

Blues chairman Geoff Irvine admitted last month that Goldington Road is "miles away from the criteria".

His side get their pre-season schedule underway on Friday night, when they host Saracens.

The Premiership champions are set to bring a strong squad, with David Strettle, Schalk Brits, Mouritz Botha and Steve Borthwick in the starting line-up.

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