Caesars Season Ends With Near Misses

The 2022 season may well be over, but thoughts for Head Coach Vanden Warner, and his Nottingham Caesars British American Football team, have already shifted to 2023, and that elusive push for promotion.

Having gone undefeated in the unofficial 2021 campaign, the only blot on the copy-book that season being against the Manchester Titans (coincidentally, winners of the 2022 Premiership North), the Caesars went into the campaign just finished with promotion on their mind.

It wasn’t to be however, falling short with an overall, 7-3 record.

An opening day defeat against Chester Romans certainly didn’t help proceedings, Warner’s side going down 62-28 on the road, along with two defeats against Midlands rivals, Leicester Falcons – 21-7 ( 19 June) and 54-21 (30 July) – eventually cost them, losing out by virtue of the Chester Romans gaining a better head-to-head record (points, Romans 75, Caesars 44) .

Speaking of the season finished, Caesars’ Vanden Warner said: “Starting preseason by having to replace damaged club equipment and team uniforms was a huge concern; however, we have the generosity of the public, former players, and new sponsors to thank for getting us out of a hole.

“Without their kind donations, we would have struggled to have kitted out a large number of our playing squad.

“As the saying goes, every cloud has a silver lining, with our plight providing both the club and the sport in the UK, with more exposure by appearances on BBC East Midlands Today, BBC Radio Nottingham and even BBC Radio 2, in addition to the Nottingham Sport website.”

After the opening day loss, the Casears picked up four successive wins, defeating Birmingham Bulls (34-19), Shropshire Revolution (34-7), Halton Spartans (54-6) and Shropshire Revolution (30-7), to go into the first, Midlands derby, 5-1, before losing for the second time.

Another three wins would be collected as the hunt for the play-offs heated up, Warner’s side defeating the Romans (16-13), Bulls (48-14) and the Spartans (30-6), to head into the final game 7-2.

That last victory of the regular season, at home to the Halton Spartans, was the game in which they paid homage to #51, and fallen comrade Stephen ‘Beef’ Brittle (Beef’s widow, Diane, was made honorary captain for the Spartans captain, and presented with the #51 jersey by Warner afterwards).

Warner said at the time: “It was great to have Diane at the game as an honorary captain, and to see some of our old boys come to support us.”

The season as a whole though, the Caesars having their best record since 2017, would come to nought in that final game – but they enjoyed the ride.

“Starting the regular season with a big loss to a play-off rival was less than ideal,” continued Warner, looking back on how the season panned out.

“But we dusted ourselves off and went again, putting together a winning run that got us back in the hunt.

“This run included a win in the reverse fixture, which put us in a great position to keep our fate in our own hands.

“With the new additions to the existing talent in the squad, we knew that we had a great shot at post-season football.

“But, for the second time in recent seasons, we fell just short of our target despite recording the same record as our nearest rival.”

It would be the Romans, alongside the undefeated NFC1 South Leicester Falcons, 10-0, that progressed to play-offs, and the Casears, it is tails between their legs, dust-down, and get ready for next year.

“I just want to say a huge thank you to all that have made this season possible; the players, coaches, committee members, volunteers, sponsors, our game day hosts… without all your hard work, dedication and generosity, we would not be where we are now.

“We’ll take the positive experiences and the lessons learned to continue moving forward; and, sadly, farewell to the players and coaches that are moving on; you will always be members of the Caesars family!”

In addition the Caesars would like to provide thanks to all that have supported them this past season; whether supporting in person, or from afar, their hosts at the University of Nottingham Sport and at Ilkeston Rugby Club, and to all the incredible people that helped them in their time of need meaning the resources were there to continue bringing American Football to Nottingham, Nottinghamshire and the East Midlands.

If you would like to be a part of the Nottingham Caesars 2023 season in ANY capacity; playing, coaching or volunteering, then please message the club on Instagram, Facebook or email

Information on training and fixture schedules for 2023 will be announced in due course.

Keep up-to-date with all things Nottingham Caesars via their socials on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

*Article provided by Peter Mann (Senior Correspondent).

*Main image @CaesarsFootball the season concludes with Nottingham just missing out on the playoffs.

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