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Rugby League World Cup

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby grande » Thu, 12 Nov 2015, 13:43

Based on a quick google search of the Spanish National Team, nine of the 23 were born in Spain.

Beñat Auzqui - France
Juan Anaya Lazaro - Spain
Francisco Blanco - Spain
Xerom Civil - France
Jonathan García - France
Fernando Martin López Perez - France
Aníbal Bonán - Spain
David Barrera Howarth - France
Jesus Recuerda Nunez - Spain
Gautier Gibouin - France
Asier Usarraga - Spain
Jaime Nava de Olano - Spain
Afa Taulí - Samoa
Gregory Maiquez - Spain
Guillaume Rouet - France
Mathieu Bélie - France
Christophe Ruiz - France
Fabien Grammatico - France
Thibault Visensang - France
Sergi Aubanell - Spain
Sebastien Ascarat - France
Julen Goia Iriberri - Spain
Brad Linklater - New Zealand

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Zhenya_Zima » Thu, 12 Nov 2015, 14:22

Rowan wrote:I didn't bring it up, Victorsra brought it up, so get your facts straight on that point to begin with.

Calm down there boy, wipe the froth away. At no point did I accuse you of bringing it up. You are banging on about it though.
My point is, Union shouldn't point at Lebanon and laugh - Spain are the most likely non-RWC2015 country to be in Japan and they are also importing on heritage en masse with that aim in mind. If my opinion on that isn't enough for you, perhaps Chris Thau's is?
http://www.rugbyeurope.eu/article-743.htm

Rowan wrote:Now I'm looking at the current Spanish team sheet and they all have Spanish (or Euskera) first and last names. Unless you can prove otherwise - which you've glaringly failed to do so despite your bizarre accusations - I think it's safe to assume you're filling the thread up with garbage.


I don't know how to point this out to you, but having a surname from somewhere doesn't automatically mean you're from there. If you're not familiar with immigration, perhaps the events of this summer may show you the porous nature of borders. Also, I wonder if there are any Spanish (or Euskera) first and last names on any South American football teamsheets. If so, they must all be Spanish too!

Rowan wrote:I lived in Spain for 5 years and used to do translations from the national fefederation for an Australian rugby web-site. The Spanish team certainly wasn't full of "foreigners" then. It wouldn't be too difficult to disprove what you're bizarre accusations, but at the end of the day it's for you to prove it - not for me or anyone else to disprove it.


I also lived in Spain, so what? I played in the league structure. I can tell you firsthand there are plenty of French Spanish players in it. Interesting you're bringing up "foreigners", because you know (I hope?) both nationality and eligibility are infinitely more complex than such a convenient parochial label.

Anyway, as I pointed out, it wasn't my claim - it came from totalrugby.de. I even quoted it. In case you don't know totalrugby.de, it is the leading rugby news source in German(y) and has been for at least 15 years. They are what you would call a reliable source. It's not for me to prove THEIR claim, but according to Internet sources (lnr.fr, espn, itsrugby, etc.) here are the nationalities by birth (yes, I know it's far more complex than that) of the matchday 23 to which they were referring as far as I could find out in my lunchbreak.
Match sheet: http://www.rugbyeurope.eu/upload/file/1427075495_150321%20ENC1A%20ES%20DE%20Game%20sheet.PDF
(Couldnt quickly find the game sheet with passport nationalities and dont have the time to try and navigate rugbyeurope's archaic website to find it)
(edit, post made while doing this is from a different game, not sure which?)

1. Franck Jean Labbe - French
2. Benat Auzqui - French
3. Jesus Moreno Rodriquez - SPANISH
4. David Gonzalez - French
5. Jesus Recuerda Nunez - SPANISH
6. Mathieu Roca - French
7. Mathieu Vinsensang - French
8. Jaime Nova de Olana - SPANISH*
9. Guillame Rouet - French
10. Christopher Ruiz - French
11. Sergi Aubenell - SPANISH* (played for Catalonia, too)
12. Daniel Snee - New Zealand
13. Fabien Grammatico - French
14. Julen Goia - SPANISH
15. Bradley Linklater - New Zealand
16. Fernando Martin Lopez Perez - French
17. Juan Anayo Lazaro - SPANISH
18. David Barrera Howarth - French
19. Lorenzo Ortiz Crivelli - Argentine
20. Thibaut Visensang - French
21. Pablo Fontes de Castro - SPANISH*
22. Silvio Casteglioni - Argentine
23. Sebastian Rouet - French
* players with contradictory and/or no reliable info, given benefit of the doubt

I make that 7 Spaniards, 2 Argentines, 2 Kiwis and 12 Frenchmen (possibly more). The number of Spaniards is well up on the Totalrugby.de Tweet, but it's not much better than the Lebanese four you mentioned, is it?

Rowan wrote:A "Lebanese" team comprised mostly of Australian citizens and four actual Lebanese players is a joke. That's not a glass house scenario because rugby union doesn't operate on such a farcical basis. World Rugby actually has fairly comprehensive rules to prevent this, and certain teams - from Hong Kong to Azerbaijan (union's equivalent to the Lebanese league team) - have suffered because of it.

The Lebanese national rugby league team is farcical. Rugby League as a 'world sport' comprising anything more than half a dozen credible national teams is farcical.


Yes, it is. And whilst I'd rather we don't see Spain field a South France team, I have no issue with the FER doing it so long as its within the rules and the rules are followed.
But to suggest it is somehow different from what you've described with Lebanon/Australia seems to be based on the difference in geographic proximity rather than modus operandi.

PS the glass house comment was not to you, it was to the DRV (German rugby) who in the same game totalrugby complained about fielded a former Argentina U20 player and at least one South African.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Rowan » Thu, 12 Nov 2015, 16:27

Hmmm. I am very surprised about this. Was that official Spanish national team? Who did they play? & if it was the official national team of Spain is this a regular thing nowadays?

Btw, I'm not suggesting only Spanish people have Spanish first and last names. I was only suggesting that when I looked at the current squad that's all I saw, which tended to indicate it was mostly Spanish. South America is a lot more multicultural.
If they're good enough to play at World Cups, then why not in between?

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Zhenya_Zima » Thu, 12 Nov 2015, 17:08

Rowan wrote:Was that official Spanish national team? Who did they play?

It was the team against Germany in this year's ENC, as noted and with a link to the game sheet!

In the RWC19 qualification thread, olivier said Spain know the easiest way to get to Japan is to beat Tonga.
He's wrong. Spain know the easiest way to get to Japan is to essentially "do a Lebanon" and pick a load of second/third generation Frenchmen and claim Europe 1.

It's a totally feasible scenario.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Armchair Fan » Thu, 12 Nov 2015, 18:51

I did not expect to see a discussion on Spanish rugby in a topic about rugby league. And yes, it is true that Spanish XV is full of players born in France, although the example of the match against Germany is exaggerated, as if I reckon well there was no French league that weekend and a larger share of players playing in France could attend the match (as it will be the case with imminent test match against Chile, when furthermore VRAC players cannot play as they face Timisoara the same day).

The decision to bet on French players eligible to play for Spain was made by Régis Sonnes, then scrapped by newly elected FER president and retaken after abysmal results in the first half of 2012-2014 ENC and two changes of head coaches. The latter, Santiago Santos, is a Spaniard formed in Liceo Francés (a French school in Madrid which always had a rugby tradition) and decided to follow Sonnes path, so 7s team could be completely separated from XV (as IOC rules would not allow for so many foreign-born players in the Olympic tournament) and young players could be developed in the meantime.

There has been a huge debate on this strategy in Spain, as it is not supported by every single fan, but the idea is to to have a national senior team full of professionals, and as this is not possible under current Spanish league semi-pro structure, efforts are being made to allow young prospects to leave the country and play in France.

What I mean is... Yes, Spain is doing "wrong" by calling lots of French players, but it is part of a long-term strategy. If Spain relied by 2025 on a squad formed by 75% of French-born players, I would be hugely disappointed. On the other hand, I must warn you that in the following years family names will no longer be a good guess on where was a player born: there already are Spanish young players of British or Romanian origins due to immigration and expat colonies.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Rowan » Fri, 13 Nov 2015, 10:27

This is not even remotely comparable to the Lebanese rugby league team, which was actually formed before rugby league was even played in that country. That occurred precisely because the players were not Lebanese, they were Australian. & although a very minor amateur rugby league competition between a few university teams had got underway in Lebanon in recent years, it is evidently capable of contributing no more than a few token players to the national squad.

That's more comparable to the Armenian rugby team (which apparently folded after being denied entry to official competitions by World Rugby - because it had failed to meet elibility requirements) than it is to Spain.

Spanish rugby union involves more than 50,000 players and more than 220 clubs playing at various divisions spread right throughout the country. It has almost a 100 years of history behind it, and has been a member of World Rugby board for over quarter of a century. If they're stacking their team with French-born players of Spanish origin I'd say that's more akin to Pacific Island teams calling upon their diaspora in NZ & Australia than it is to a bunch of Aussies deciding to 'create' a Lebanese national team because they weren't good enough to make the 'Roos.
If they're good enough to play at World Cups, then why not in between?

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby thatrugbyguy » Fri, 13 Nov 2015, 12:18

Really, who cares? The Lebanese Rugby League team may have been a joke back in 2000 when there was no domestic league but they've gotten their house in order in that regards. The thing that bugs me about the RL world cup is the format. Pools with different numbers of teams in them just seems farcical to me. I get it there isn't the depth for 16 teams but 14 is such a strange number. I really don't know why they don't just stick with 12, at least you get even pools that way.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Rowan » Fri, 13 Nov 2015, 15:05

Have they got their act together when only four Lebanon-based players are in the squad?

At the very best, I'd compare them to the current Algerian rugby union team, which is apparently pushing for affiliation to World Rugby at present, despite fielding an almost exclusive French-based national team.

I've said it before, but I think State of Origin and NRL are fantastic competitions. It's just the global pretensions which annoy me. It's entirely deceptive, designed solely to combat the inferiority complex created by the success of the parent code's World Cup, and should more realistically be confined to an absolute maximum of eight teams.
If they're good enough to play at World Cups, then why not in between?

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Canadian_Rugger » Fri, 13 Nov 2015, 23:04

When are we going to stop pretending Rugby League is an international sport, it's not.

It's played seriously in Northern England, The East Coast of Australia, Auckland and Basque France. It's not a legitimate International sport and it makes it self look stupid every time it tries to claim it is.

Rugby Union isn't perfect but it is definitely an international sport with a serious following in many countries. Even ones outside the Top 20 teams in the world.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby thatrugbyguy » Sat, 14 Nov 2015, 03:01

I don't have an issue with them having a world cup. I really do think too much is made about its legitimacy however. If they want to have a World Championship then frankly it's not hurting anyone. That said, if the people running the game were honest with themselves they probably know they don't have any more than 10 teams they are capable of fielding. The problem is I think they have been trying to give off the illusion the game is bigger than it is instead of just accepting that their talent pool is limited and simply building a World Cup around that. The RL World Cup has been in a constant state of flux for as long as I can remember. If they had just stuck with the same format for more than one tournament maybe the could have developed things better.

What annoys me isn't the sport, it's RL fans who are jealous of the RWC because they deem it an inferior sport and think RL is the better sport, an opinion that is purely subjective. It boggles my mind how many RL fans I've talked to simply think all you've got to do is show the difference between the two sports and people will be converted to RL. The truth is the only ones they can blame for RL's place in the global sporting order are those running the game. They had 30 years head start over the RWC and frankly did absolutely nothing to develop their game internationally. Only now are the RL administrators trying to take the international scene seriously but given how big the RWC has become it's going to be nigh impossible for RL to ever reach a similar level, it's taken the RWC almost 30 years to get to where it is now on the back of tens of millions of dollars, maybe even hundreds of millions of dollar worth of investment. There's no quick fix for RL, if they want a bigger international game it's going to take decades of work and a truck load of money, and even then the fact is it will always struggle to entice people to the game when the RWC offers a bigger international showcase.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Rowan » Sat, 14 Nov 2015, 08:21

Australians could make even the Americans appear erudite on international affairs and to grow up on the East Coast of Australia is to acquire the perception rugby league is the most import sport on the planet while rugby union is a forward-oriented novelty version, amateur until recently, confined mostly to toffs at the private schools. They may also attain some vague cognizance of its importance across the creek in the 'Shaky Isles,' but this only serves to enhance its image as an inferior specimen and poor immitation of the 'real game.' For them 'footy' is chiefly a domestic sport, the NRL its focal point and State of Origin an additional highlight. The international game means tests with Britain or New Zealand. No one else is to be taken seriously. So imagine their confusion when twenty nations, including their own, line up for a World Cup tournament that fills stadiums and draws televsision viewers by the millions from all over the world. Imagine their stupefication as the sports news is dominated for a bewildering month or so not by the game they are accustomed to, but its forward-oriented novelty version, with high quality teams from all corners of the globe participating. Then imagine their envy and sudden sense of inferiority. That's why rugby league had to manufacture a bunch of 'national' teams and throw them together in what is supposed to be its own "World Cup." That's their affair, of course. I'm not calling for its prohibition. But recognize it for what it is - a total charade.
If they're good enough to play at World Cups, then why not in between?

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby thatrugbyguy » Sat, 14 Nov 2015, 08:53

I wouldn't call it a charade, I just think they need to be honest with themselves. If they want a bigger World cup then spend the time and money and do it properly. Start small and work your way up. I can't help but think they've always been trying to simply catch up to rugby, the problem being rugby has a stronger foundation in all but two nations where RL is played.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Canadian_Rugger » Sat, 14 Nov 2015, 17:10

I personally like a Rugby League and the emphasis on passing and ball handling makes you a better Union player but the sport isn't even in the same league as Union. In a lot of ways, Australia's obsession with Rugby League reminds me a lot of Canada's obsession with Ice Hockey before a bunch of other countries got on board and started taking the sport seriously.

We used to talk about how we were the best, how nobody could beat us, etc... We used to basically think we could step on the ice and the game would already be decided. Fortunately for the sport, while we sat on our laurels and paid little attention to anyone else the rest of the world got serious about it and now almost every European country has their own pro league and there are close to 10 nations that have a serious chance of winning international tournaments.

Rugby League is too commercial and too self-absorbed to ever become a serious sport anywhere else though. In a lot of ways, it reminds of American Football. Rugby Union is becoming increasingly commercialize but the sport still feels bigger than the money behind it, I just don't feel the same way about League.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby victorsra » Sun, 15 Nov 2015, 20:17

I didn't bring it up, Victorsra brought it up, so get your facts straight on that point to begin with.


Yes, but in fact I think very interesting that they indeed have 4 players in local RL. As far as I could find Lebanon has a serious RL scene, even if it is small. I sent the players list to a Lebanese-Brazilian friend that could identify by the names of the guys and the teams that is is probably becoming a sport linked to rich Christians. I wonder if it is slowly changing from a mere curiosity for people with family in Australia to become something more tahn this.
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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Rowan » Sun, 15 Nov 2015, 21:54

I've been to Lebanon, and I have a Lebanese housemate. Trust me. They don't know what rugby - league or union - even is.
If they're good enough to play at World Cups, then why not in between?

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby victorsra » Mon, 16 Nov 2015, 00:43

Of course the majority of the population doesn't know nothing about RL, and it means nothing about local RL scene. The same way the majority of Brazilian population don't follow rugby union (remembe another discussion). The some way the vast majority of countries in the world about rugby at all. It is not because it is a minor sport that it doesn't exist or it doesen't have life.
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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Rowan » Mon, 16 Nov 2015, 09:05

It is not because it is a minor sport that it doesn't exist or it doesen't have life.



If you're referring to its public image, I would respectfully argue that it is. Incidentally, I've also been getting the Lebanon News feed on my Facebook page ever since writing a blog for them a few years ago, and I've never seen any mention of rugby or league in the sports pages. Some time ago I took a look at the domestic scene for both codes in Lebanon on Wiki, and both are really very minor - basically still at 'novelty' level. There is a bigger club rugby scene here in Turkey, and the vast majority of Turks have no ideas about that...
If they're good enough to play at World Cups, then why not in between?

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby victorsra » Sun, 03 Jan 2016, 21:41

Updating, USA is qualified for the RLWC.

Americas Zone (played in Florida):

Dec 4th: USA 20-14 Jamaica
Dec 8th: Canada 18-18 Jamaica
Dec 12th: USA 34-24 Canada
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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby gambass » Mon, 11 Jan 2016, 16:46

Canadian_Rugger wrote:When are we going to stop pretending Rugby League is an international sport, it's not.

It's played seriously in Northern England, The East Coast of Australia, Auckland and Basque France. It's not a legitimate International sport and it makes it self look stupid every time it tries to claim it is.

Rugby Union isn't perfect but it is definitely an international sport with a serious following in many countries. Even ones outside the Top 20 teams in the world.


Catalan France ;) and you forget PNG. But that's pretty much it. There are probably more RU players in Canada alone than RL players in the world except for these five nations.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby victorsra » Tue, 02 Feb 2016, 20:50

http://rlif.com/rugby-league-internatio ... eam-format

RLIF anounce a 16-teams Rugby League World Cup for 2021.
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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby RugbyLiebe » Mon, 08 Feb 2016, 16:05

victorsra wrote:http://rlif.com/rugby-league-international-news/article/1629/rlif-announces--team-format

RLIF anounce a 16-teams Rugby League World Cup for 2021.


"The growth of rugby league internationally is reflected in the expansion of the tournament to four pools of four," Collier said.

Is there any? I just speak for world number 19 Germany and well there is no league, no clubs (if you don't count the odd fun match in summer from union clubs) and the national team is made up entirely of union players on their summer break (+the Keinhorst brothers).
So I would have to say for Germany: there is no growth and hardly the game itself present at all.
How to grow rugby worldwide?
Look at the world ranking in July. Teams ranked 1-10 have to play one team from 11-20 (they don't play in a regular competition) away the next year. 11-20 play 21-30 away and so on. Yes, it really is that simple.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby victorsra » Mon, 08 Feb 2016, 20:01

Yes, it is completely artificial. RL would be much more serious promoting something smaller that reflects it's spread. I don't care, in fact.

What I find interesting to think about is their propose to make Women's World Cu together with Men's World Cup. Sometimes I question if wouldn't be better to have the Women's Rugby World Cup together with Men's Rugby World Cup too, to allow the women's game to take a stake of the tournament's popularity. Maybe it could benefit women's game as it probably would generate more attention and public than the current Women's World Cup. Of course many women won't like the idea because it sounds women's game if a minor thing. For me we should think in a more pragmatic way, because if World Rugby promotes the women's matches the same way I don't see a problem. Just like Rugby World Cup Sevens.

Besides, Women's Rugby World Cup money comes anyway from Men's World Cup profit, so the costs impact wouldn't be a point.
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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby Coloradoan » Mon, 08 Feb 2016, 20:46

I guess the question is whether or not World Rugby can turn the WRWC into a self-sufficient standalone competition. If so, playing it alongside the men would detract from the women's event.

That potential might be there for self-sufficiency in North America, where women's sports tend to get a bit more coverage and interest than in Europe. Possibly the same in NZ and Australia. The women's soccer WC got a ton of interest in North America last year and while soccer is far more popular than rugby in North America, I think the potential is there, especially as there is no other women's contact sport counterpart like there is in football on the men's side. Already sometimes we see women's rugby stories get publicity like the Rugby Warrior Goddess: http://www.buzzfeed.com/stephaniemcneal ... ar-goddess

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby RugbyLiebe » Mon, 08 Feb 2016, 21:09

Hey, you forgot about lingerie football :lol:

I love the idea to see a women's world cup game ahead of a men's wc-game. But logistics and TV times (would be unfair to let the WRWC-game be played at the very same time another RWC game is on).

But will it do the women's game any good? 7s has taken a large toll on the women's 15s game and tbh I'm not sure if a curtain raiser style would rise the profile.
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Look at the world ranking in July. Teams ranked 1-10 have to play one team from 11-20 (they don't play in a regular competition) away the next year. 11-20 play 21-30 away and so on. Yes, it really is that simple.

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Re: Rugby League World Cup

Postby iul » Mon, 08 Feb 2016, 21:18

I think it would raise its profile, specially if the world cup was marketed as the world cup instead of the world cup and the women's world cup. I mean the olympics aren't marketed as the womens' olympics, etc...

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