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Page last updated at 16:30 GMT, Friday, 16 April 2010 17:30 UK

Bristol captain Jason Spice criticises play-off system

Jason Spice
Spice joined Bristol from Cardiff Blues in the summer

Bristol captain Jason Spice has criticised the introduction of play-offs in the newly-formed Championship.

Paul Hull's men are almost at the halfway point in what will be a nine game campaign if they are to get promoted back to the Premiership.

"If these things were done for the right reasons it wouldn't worry me, but it's not," Spice told BBC Bristol.

"It's certainly not for the player's well-being, but it's just something we've got to get on with."

It seemed to work for every other year but they [the RFU] are trying to generate extra income for other clubs

Jason Spice

Bristol finished top of the table at the end of the regular season, which in previous years would have seen them automatically promoted.

But now they have to play six pool games, a semi-final and a two-legged final if they are to bounce straight back.

"It seemed to work for every other year but they [the Rugby Football Union] are trying to generate extra income for other clubs," said Spice.

"I guess it's home game gate takings is the main reason why this things happening. If they think it's going to create more interest in the game then good."

Bristol's form of late has been indifferent, after having gone 13 games unbeaten in their league campaign.

They started slowly in the play-offs with a defeat and two unconvincing wins before hitting their straps against Plymouth last week when they ran out 38-7 winners.

"Two or three months ago we were riding high and we're trying to get back to that form," added the 34-year-old Kiwi.

"It's quite hard to get your timing right for these sort of things because it's been quite a drawn-out process.

"As a squad we're just trying to build our intensity up and have as much confidence going into these last few games."

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