Channel Island rugby rivals Jersey and Guernsey have confirmed the 2017 date for the annual battle for one of the game's oldest trophies, the Siam Cup - sponsored by Ipes.
Jersey Reds will play host to Guernsey Raiders at St Peter on Saturday May 6th as the Siam Cup, first contested between the two Islands in the 1930s, once again takes its place as a highlight of the Channel Islands' rugby calendar.
The two clubs have agreed similar eligibility criteria for the 2017 contest as those brought in for the 2016 Siam in order to achieve a more competitive event between the Reds, who are part of the professional Greene King IPA Championship, and the Raiders, whose players are amateur and compete in National Three South-East, three steps removed from the Championship.
The agreed criteria involve a three-season residency requirement for professional Jersey Reds' players: the host club will name a maximum of six players in the match-day squad and, barring injury, have pledged to only field five on the field at any one time.
The 2016 Siam Cup, played under the same residency requirement, was one of the most evenly-contested for many seasons. Hosts Guernsey were leading the match going into the final 10 minutes, but 15 late points for the Reds secured a 19-33 win.
Jersey Reds Chairman Mark Morgan said: "The Siam Cup is a unique event - I'm proud to have played in it and am now looking forward to my first Siam as Chairman. I'm very pleased that we can confirm the 2017 date and other details following constructive discussions with Guernsey."
Guernsey Raiders Chairman Martin Belcher added: "The heritage of the Siam Cup is something that is vitally important for both clubs to maintain, and we were pleased to see a really close game in 2016 - now our squad will be really motivated to go one better and get the green ribbons back on the trophy for the first time in many seasons."
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