The build up to this game has been marred somewhat by ticketing problems at Wasps. Season Tickets were not sent out until around a week ago, and quite a few people have yet to receive their tickets. This means that before the game there will be queues and admin to do.
The anticipation of that over the week has marred the day somewhat. The best organisation on the day can only really result in a 'Oh, that wasn't too bad' - and the worst case will see lots of people unable to get in.
To minimise problems when actually at the ground, I wanted to telephone to alert them that I would need to make use of this service. On friday, I was told to ring on saturday.
On saturday I was told by automated message that the office was open Monday to Friday and on matchdays.
Today, I couldn't get a connection and had to keep trying. I was on hold for some time. The organisation of ticketing has left something to be desired recently - and at key times lines can be very congested, online booking can also be quite 'clunky'. I am pleased to learn that we're moving to a swipe card system this season instead of a voucher booklet. Eventually I got through; the guy said: 'I'll just double check the pile we have' - my ticket is there and so that removed some concern.
There's little many can really do except go along and cross their fingers. In our case things are looking up as I now know my ticket is waiting for me. Therefore I'm less concerned about the process of actually getting in, of admin hassles and I believe my experience will be reasonably straightforward.
I'm under no illusions that there'll be some people whose tickets are not waiting for them, who will have a less pleasant time , I just hope that this'll be a handful of people
The fact of the ticketing problems is a done thing, and should all be okay in the end. It has affected the start of the season, however and when combined with the lamentable performance in the London Double Header and the ELVs I find myself somewhat ambivalent about the season. This isn't a good feeling, but it is what it is. Win or lose, I really need today to be an exciting game - just to get a bit of pep into my season.
Thinking of the double header, it was so slow that Monica actually fell asleep in second half as she was so bored. The woman on the other side of me said 'Oh, was that a try? I'd drifted off....'. This wasn't the team we normally see.
Returning to this week: Obviously a Home game usually favours the Home team. In addition Shaun Edwards and Ian McGeechan will have had a few words to say after the Irish game - so it should be a better spectacle. Dave Walder is due to return, following an ankle injury. This is a good thing.
On past form, we should be okay against Worcester - but I'm not yet sure how the new lineup are settling down, so things are a bit uncertain.
I'm hoping for a win, of course, but I'm nowhere near as confident as I was when we faced Worcester at home last year (when we won 49-12 - my worry there was that a string of wins were needed for a good premiership finish and any slip would have been the end of it).
On the topic of the new season, I'm not overly enamoured with the ELVs. The one about pulling down the maul is positively dangerous and in the lineout we can see people held up in the air ready to catch the ball - which to me negates some of the opportunities in the lineout. I'm reasonably happy with the referee able to use the touch judges (or assistant refs as they're called now) in any way he sees fit, and the quick throw in rule. I do hope that the ELVs are just that, Experimental, and they get a good review - not just a rubber stamp.
The match starts at 3pm. Audio streaming is available for free. It's also on Sky, and highlights will be on ITV4 at 6:30pm.