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ⓘ 2019 Bill Beaumont County Championship Division 3. The Bill Beaumont County Championship Division 3 was the 15th version of the competition that is part of the ..




                                     

ⓘ 2019 Bill Beaumont County Championship Division 3

The Bill Beaumont County Championship Division 3 was the 15th version of the competition that is part of the annual English rugby union County Championship, organised by the Rugby Football Union for the tier 3 English counties. Each county drew its players from rugby union clubs from the fifth tier and below of the English rugby union league system. The counties were divided into two regional pools with the winners of each pool meeting in the final at Twickenham Stadium, London.

At the end of the group stage, Cumbria won three out of three to stop Pool 1 ahead of Oxfordshire, who they defeated in the final game, while Dorset & Wilts made their second successive final by also winning all three of their games. In the Twickenham final it was Cumbria who emerged victorious, defeating Dorset & Wilts convincingly, 23-13, with tournament top scorer, Mark Ireland, kicking 13 of their points. For Cumbria it was their first Division 3 title in three attempts and first county championship silverware since 1997, while Dorset & Wilts failed to retain their title and make it a fourth win in the competition.

                                     

1. Competition format

The competition format is two regional group stages divided into north and south with four teams in each group. This means that two teams in the pool had two home games, while the other two had just one. The RFU have taken fixtures from the previous year into account so that county sides that only played one home game in that competition now get two games and vice versa. The shield competition has increased from six to eight teams as two counties, Middlesex and Notts, Lincs & Derbyshire, have returned to the county championships after an absence of several years. At the end of the pool stage the top teams with the best record from each pool advance to the final held on 26 May 2019 which will once more be held back at Twickenham Stadium in London, having been held at the Athletic Ground in nearby Richmond the previous season.

Promotion occurs every two seasons, with accumulated points taken into consideration. At the end of the 2017–18 season, Essex and Sussex were promoted to tier 2 with Cumbria and North Midlands dropping down to replace them in tier 3. There will now be no promotion until the end of the 2020 competition.

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