Tier 2 & 3 Rugby Forum

Future powers from Tier 3

Poll

Algeria
9
26%
Zimbabwe
8
23%
Poland
5
14%
Colombia
8
23%
Other (name below)
5
14%
 
Total votes : 35
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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby 4N » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 17:06

olivier wrote:
4N wrote:Already covered. You add nothing as usual.

You're first answer is stupid. Putting Poland instead of the Netherlands is a proof of big lack of knowledge. Participating numbers, union plan of development, national teams improvement, quality of coaches aren't comparable. Poland shouldn't even be noticed...


WGAF. This is about potential as a rugby nation. Two things matter most: general popularity/access to benefactors (usually correlated), expats from developed nations to choose from. Rugby is not popular in the Netherlands, there is no big Dutch diaspora developed abroad.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby iul » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 19:06

Rugby is not very popular in Romania either, yet we do OK. The Dutch have more players than we do. Their problems are low quality coaching and the lack of a pro setup domestically.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby 4N » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 19:51

I had the decline of Romania in mind but didn't see the point of saying it. That's why I see more potential in Poland building up their team via a domestic league. Their clubs seem to have a solid following now. Plus they actually have lots of diaspora players they could pick like Spain do. Their selection policy seems to change at times, again similar to Spain a few years ago. So you could see where they could make a similar run. There isn't much precedent for Netherlands in rugby. In the case of Romania the game was actually a lot more popular there when you rose through the ranks back in the 70s. In a different era, granted, and I know amz and others have covered why things declined there post 1989.

Algeria would just need Boudjellal and WR to help them pick their strongest team and they could play somewhere in France, at Toulon even. They could play vs a Pacific Island or T2 nation in November. Whether it would be self-sustaining is another question, but it would help to have a different nation challenge for Africa 2 at the RWC. I don't think Namibia's matches get much of a TV bump either, that's the reality. And Algeria's probably would in France. It's something WR factors in. Does rugby have an audience in the Netherlands? I honestly don't know.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Bulbash » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 20:11

I can say that the best polish team Budowlani Łódź wants to play in Continental Shield at least in 2019. And something about national team. We have a lot of players playing in France and England (of course lower divisions but still semi profesional) and if we could choose them all for a Rugby Europe Trophy we would be in top 3 in this competition i think.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Tobar » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 21:23

I'm super biased but put in Colombia. I don't know much about the other places so this is more a case of "I know about X so won't vote for Y" than anything else, though they have shown very encouraging progress. They moved up to play in the new Sudamerica 6 Naciones and are playing in a new competition - the ARC B (or Americas Rugby Challenge). They also had the most amount of Get Into Rugby participants, tied with South Africa. I think it was around 120k or so - Get Into Rugby numbers are basically just flag rugby for youth and not actual rugby participation numbers but for a Tier 3 country any awareness of the sport is huge.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Blurandski » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 21:30

Tobar wrote:I'm super biased but put in Colombia. I don't know much about the other places so this is more a case of "I know about X so won't vote for Y" than anything else, though they have shown very encouraging progress. They moved up to play in the new Sudamerica 6 Naciones and are playing in a new competition - the ARC B (or Americas Rugby Challenge). They also had the most amount of Get Into Rugby participants, tied with South Africa. I think it was around 120k or so - Get Into Rugby numbers are basically just flag rugby for youth and not actual rugby participation numbers but for a Tier 3 country any awareness of the sport is huge.


I heard some rumblings about putting Pro/rel into the Americas Rugby competitions (i.e. loser relegated, winner promoted), it'd be good to see it get opened up.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Tobar » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 21:42

Yep, they are going to review whether or not they want pro/rel. I think it depends on how the best team plays and if they think they’re at a similar level as Brazil/Chile.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby victorsra » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 21:44

The competition is closed until 2020 AFAIK (it was anounced in 2016 that the ARC would be the same for 5 seasons). Therefore ARC can have P/R from 2020 to 2021 seasons. The second division is set to kickoff now, August 2018, between Colombia, Paraguay, Mexico and Guyana.
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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Tobar » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 22:18

And of course my luck I’m in Colombia literally 2 weeks before it starts....

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby welshdragon2000 » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 22:29

It's very difficult to predict who will be a power emerging from tier 3 and I'm not gonna pretend that I know all about the Polish union or the Colombian union, I'll leave others who know in depth about these nations to cast judgements.

For a country to rise up the rankings and become a 'future power' then they must have certain factors: good coaching, solid financial backing, high participation numbers (which is growing each year), good attendances to matches (showing growing interest from public leading to more money perhaps being made available) and also good facilities. Now what country qualifies under these factors? My first thought was Brazil but seeing as we have them listed as tier 2.5 it's impossible for me to say. Poland does certainly sound like it has potential to do well and I read a few articles this evening about rugby in Poland and I'm amazed by the attendances they get to their games. Should Algeria qualify for the gold cup then they will likely make that step up the rankings. I know that rugby in South America has been growing at a phenomenal rate and it wouldn't surprise me if they emerge from tier 3 soon although I believe that they will be a slower project as they have to build from the bottom up and have to build grassroots style. Paraguay I hear have been doing well lately, perhaps someone could explain to me their position and how it differs from Colombia. Mexico are being targeted by world rugby but I doubt we will see anything from them at least in the next 20 year if at all.

I like the thread though, a very entertaining and exciting one to read. I will certainly be looking out for Poland, Colombia and Algeria in the future.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Blurandski » Tue, 26 Jun 2018, 22:35

Poland will also have a lot of UK based players coming through in the next few decades, of course how helpful that is to grow rugby back in the home country is definitely up for debate.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby victorsra » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 00:05

Paraguay I hear have been doing well lately, perhaps someone could explain to me their position and how it differs from Colombia.


Paraguay is much more traditional than Colombia. They play the South American Championship since the 1970s (while Colombia only debuted in the second division in 2001) and Paraguayan rugby has strong ties with Argentina and have offered strong oposition to Brazil and Chile in the past. Rugby how been for long time a upper-class sport in Paraguay and their main clubs (CURDA, San Jose, Santa Clara, Luque) are strong institutions, with their own fields and clubhouses.

Colombia is more like Brazil, with a fast recent development. The difference is that while Brazilian rugby is much older and the main clubs are from the 70s, 80s and 90s, Colombia has a more recent development focused on youth rugby.
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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Tobar » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 01:38

Also Paraguay and Colombia are currently evenly matched, however historically Paraguay has been the better side. Colombia has never beaten Paraguay and that’s one of their top goals this year. Though going with what Victor has said, Colombia has a lot more people than Paraguay and since they’ve focused so much in their youth I would imagine that Colombia overtakes them.

Mexico is interesting. I don’t know much about them but apparently their playing numbers grew by 90% over the last few years or so...I got an email from RAN stating this fact but lost it. I do know that most of it is played in Mexico City and it’s very hard for them to get field space down there.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby victorsra » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 02:01

I agree with you that Colombia has everything to go up, but I always think that rugby in Paraguay could follow Uruguay's steps and definitly become Paraguay's second sport. It is possible to widespread rugby there. Like Uruguay, Paraguayan rugby in centred in one city - Asunción - and rugby's links to the upper classes could help finding money, which is Paraguayan rugby's main problem. Paraguay is poorer than Uruguay. However, if rumours are right and Paraguay do find a way to make a South American League franchise viable their perspectives change for good. Paraguay is NOT dead.
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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Sables4EVA » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 07:02

I am impressed with what I see happening in North Africa but historically those nations only start taking things serious around World Cup qualification time. I hope that Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria continue with the Mahgreb Cup and play a few games against European sides considering their location, much closer than South Africa.

Colombia and Poland I have no knowledge of except for the results and comments posted on this forum and I wish them all the luck too.

I know what the plans are to grow the game in Zimbabwe and if they continue then by the next world Cup cycle the team will be much stronger. There are 3 youth programs running which are collectively bringing over 100 000 (one hundred thousand) boys and girls into the game, those figures are true they are just not registered with World Rugby for some reason (The programs are Tag Rugby (10 000+), Old Mutual (50 000+) and Community clubs (30 000+). There is also a drive to increase the competitiveness of Secondary schools rugby.

If it continues uninterrupted the next 5 years should see the fruits of those labours.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby qwerty » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 07:04

Why does nobody mention Madagascar?

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Bogdan_DC » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 07:15

Sables4EVA wrote:There are 3 youth programs running which are collectively bringing over 100 000 (one hundred thousand)


OK, i will back Sables :).

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby amz » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 08:11

iul wrote:Rugby is not very popular in Romania either, yet we do OK. The Dutch have more players than we do. Their problems are low quality coaching and the lack of a pro setup domestically.


The numbers of other countries are greatly inflated. Even if one counts all the kids who touched one time a ball at tag rugby it is still unrealistic. This being said, for kids our numbers are pretty good. The issue is after 14-15 yo when most parents prioritize school and studies. People wants to see their kids as doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers and truth to be told, with decent technical Uni you can find a well paid job anywhere in Europe nowdays. After 1989 sport is the Cinderella of school curiculum and not a priority and since it is only club based parents may see it as endangering for their kids future careers and university chances. This is common for all sports, not only rugby. Still, the structure Romania have is still very strong compared with most T3 countries.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby thatrugbyguy » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 08:56

The thing about the current tier system is that the lines have been well and truly blurred over the last few years. Before it was pretty easy to divide the tiers, but now that the likes of Japan, Fiji and the US are able to not only complete but to genuinely cause an upset means we've basically got nations who fall in between the each level. The breakdown at present to me looks like this:

Tier 1 - Rugby Championship and the 6 Nations teams
Tier 1.5 - Fiji, Japan, Tonga, Georgia, Romania and maybe the USA now
Tier 2 - Samoa, Canada, Uruguay, Namibia
Tier 2.5 - Spain, Russia, maybe Brazil and possibly even Hong Kong

With the T3 nations it starts to become a bit of a coin toss about who is in the best position to be elevated to the next level. If I was to hazard a guess based off the current information it would probably be Chile by virtue of the professional league that's being created in South America as well as their involvement in the Americas Rugby Championship. More professionalism is going to be the key for many of these nations. If the Spanish League evolves to become fully professional it's obviously going to help Spain and possibly Portugal, and if the new Russian/Eastern Europe league gets off the ground it could help development all around Europe depending on where teams are located. The possibility of Belgium and Netherlands teaming up to form something pro as well would be obviously beneficial also. I would say nations in Europe would be in the best place to evolve should any of these professional leagues develop.

Africa is an interesting one though. Namibia have clearly benefited from having a team in the South African domestic competition, so perhaps this is something Zimbabwe, Kenya and Uganda should consider also, granted the SARU allow it. I don't know what the likelihood of a professional league getting established in Africa is, but if there's a way to get teams into the South African environment it's going to help enormously. North Africa I'm sure what's possible up there currently. Distance would be a huge issue for Morocco and Tunisia if they wanted to send teams.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby RugbyLiebe » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 08:59

qwerty wrote:Why does nobody mention Madagascar?


Since they beat Namibia in 2012 (oh boy time runs) basically nothing happened. Apart from being rugby-mad, they are an extremely poor nation AND apparently lack a bit of the physique you need for rugby.


Edit: nice find, with flags for non-German-speakers:
https://www.laenderdaten.info/durchschn ... oessen.php

Madagascar apparently has the 6th smallest population of the world with an average of 1,63m and that's even more surprising the 3rd lowest weight with an average of just 57,1 kg :shock:
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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby qwerty » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 09:22

Being a country where rugby is so popular is a very rare asset, and they should be candidates on virtue of that.

Also even though they are small, there must be a few big Malagasy lads. It's a country of like 20 million people I think.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby RugbyLiebe » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 09:35

qwerty wrote:Being a country where rugby is so popular is a very rare asset, and they should be candidates on virtue of that.

Also even though they are small, there must be a few big Malagasy lads. It's a country of like 20 million people I think.


You are probably right. But still 8cm in average smaller than lets say Japan is a problem. They are one of the richest countries in the world, have 127 million and still struggle in the forward positions, bad nutrition could also be a problem, but maybe I am wrong on that. This combined, with apparently next to none immigrants to other countries + next to none ethnical Europeans, makes it tougher.

Still a very interesting country. How big is rugby in Madascar actually? We all remember that famous win in front of a full-house, but since then another qualifier they had lower attendances and I haven't read much else since then.
Last edited by RugbyLiebe on Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 10:03, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby thatrugbyguy » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 09:46

Nutrition is a big factor. Part of why Japan was able to finally compete with higher ranked opponents was because Eddie Jones changed their diet to be more western based. The players got substantially bigger as a result, and whilst they were still smaller in height on average than other nations they weighed more and had more muscle mass. You only have to look at how the Japanese players look today compared to how they looked back at RWC 2007 to see how much bigger they are.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Tobar » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 13:29

victorsra wrote:I agree with you that Colombia has everything to go up, but I always think that rugby in Paraguay could follow Uruguay's steps and definitly become Paraguay's second sport. It is possible to widespread rugby there. Like Uruguay, Paraguayan rugby in centred in one city - Asunción - and rugby's links to the upper classes could help finding money, which is Paraguayan rugby's main problem. Paraguay is poorer than Uruguay. However, if rumours are right and Paraguay do find a way to make a South American League franchise viable their perspectives change for good. Paraguay is NOT dead.


Yes - definitely not suggesting it’s dead, they’re still improving. Colombia is just moving at a faster pace. I’m also American so take everything I say with a grain of salt.

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Re: Future powers from Tier 3

Postby Tobar » Wed, 27 Jun 2018, 13:33

thatrugbyguy wrote:The thing about the current tier system is that the lines have been well and truly blurred over the last few years. Before it was pretty easy to divide the tiers, but now that the likes of Japan, Fiji and the US are able to not only complete but to genuinely cause an upset means we've basically got nations who fall in between the each level. The breakdown at present to me looks like this:

Tier 1 - Rugby Championship and the 6 Nations teams
Tier 1.5 - Fiji, Japan, Tonga, Georgia, Romania and maybe the USA now
Tier 2 - Samoa, Canada, Uruguay, Namibia
Tier 2.5 - Spain, Russia, maybe Brazil and possibly even Hong Kong

With the T3 nations it starts to become a bit of a coin toss about who is in the best position to be elevated to the next level. If I was to hazard a guess based off the current information it would probably be Chile by virtue of the professional league that's being created in South America as well as their involvement in the Americas Rugby Championship. More professionalism is going to be the key for many of these nations. If the Spanish League evolves to become fully professional it's obviously going to help Spain and possibly Portugal, and if the new Russian/Eastern Europe league gets off the ground it could help development all around Europe depending on where teams are located. The possibility of Belgium and Netherlands teaming up to form something pro as well would be obviously beneficial also. I would say nations in Europe would be in the best place to evolve should any of these professional leagues develop.

Africa is an interesting one though. Namibia have clearly benefited from having a team in the South African domestic competition, so perhaps this is something Zimbabwe, Kenya and Uganda should consider also, granted the SARU allow it. I don't know what the likelihood of a professional league getting established in Africa is, but if there's a way to get teams into the South African environment it's going to help enormously. North Africa I'm sure what's possible up there currently. Distance would be a huge issue for Morocco and Tunisia if they wanted to send teams.


We always refer to teams in tiers but I’m pretty sure World rugby / IRB scrapped the tier system years ago. Regardless it’s still helpful for us. I think you’re assessment is pretty accurate - Tier 1 are the obvious ones and I consider Tier 2 basically any country that is a somewhat regular at the RWC, maybe qualifying for at least 2/3. Uruguay is a good example, they’ve qualified for 1999, 2007, 2015 and now 2019 so they will only have been to 2 consecutive RWCs once. I think they’re a good cutoff for Tier 2 (despite being ranked higher than Canada).

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