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Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby ihateblazers » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 03:33

Chester-Donnelly wrote:
ihateblazers wrote:
I’m also wondering about what’s going to happen to South Africa.

Would joining the Pro 14 actually benefit them financially? I have doubts about the European Cup as well, it’s not exactly a lucrative competition in itself. The two South African sides in the Pro 14 was a very pragmatic decision to get those 2 fully pro teams into another competition when there is no other within South Africa (currie cup in its current form does not count).

Maybe the best would be to go down the domestic route of a South African Premier League/Currie Cup whilst competing in a Super Rugby Cup. Really don’t see the attraction of European money because it doesn’t exist. Could position itself as the shining light of Africa perhaps.


The Currie Cup, in its current short format, is 10 week tournament played in the middle of the South African rugby season. I think that has commercial value for broadcasters in Europe because it's in the right time zone and it's on when there's no rugby being played in Europe.

More South African teams in the Pro 14 is not the way forward in my opinion, because someone has to play in the wrong season. June, July, August in Europe, and December, January, February in South Africa are not suitable for playing rugby, and people like to watch summer sports at those times.

I think all parties should take another look at this proposed "rainbow cup" from 2005, to be played at the end of the South African season and the start of the European season.

https://www.wru.wales/2005/05/rainbow-cup-planned/

There would be a requirement for a competition at the start of the South African rugby season March to June, so I think an 6 team South African Super Rugby Championship with 2 teams qualifying for the 8 team Super tournament proposed by Australia would be the best way to start the season.

6 team Super Rugby - 8 team Currie Cup - 16 team Rainbow Cup (4 from South Africa)


My point about European money was more in reference of the Pro 14 and moving to Europe full time, Currie Cup would apply as well though. Remember that the tv rights expansion for the Cheetahs and Kings came from Super Sport, probably for more content in South Africa. It had not effect on the rights package in the existing Pro 14 markets. But since the South African market is so lucrative it ended up increasing the pie for the celts/italians.

Unless CVC has definite interest from European broadcasters for the South African teams to join the Pro 14 and Champions Cup full time, I think they are barking up the wrong tree. South African's don't care about European rugby and Europeans don't care about South African rugby. The South African's would be selling themselves short by pooling their broadcast money with the Celtic Nations and Champions Cup.

I read this argument on reddit i think regarding the value of South Africa to European broadcasters, and basically the poster was saying that the pull of the New Zealand teams (allblacks and super rugby franchises) playing in the European time zone is what drove those rights. I tend to agree with that, i think there is reverence for New Zealand rugby in the main rugby markets in Europe which isn't there for South Africa or Australia.

Now, the South African market itself is one of the largest in the world and they should try to leverage that as much as possible. That's why I think staying out of European club competition and going full on Currie Cup with a Southern Hemisphere Heineken Cup is the way to go. Rugby Championship or 6 Nations? that's a different story.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby ihateblazers » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 04:00

TheStroBro wrote:
victorsra wrote:So, this the end of Aussie NRC as we know https://www.rugby.com.au/news/2020/08/1 ... p-2021-nrc


Kind of dumb in a sense. Who is going to fund the travel in a National Club Competition? NRC was supposed to be like the Mitre 10 and Currie Cup, now you lose a minor league bridge. The problem being that Australia never aligned it like that, and then again NZ is attempting to make the M10 Cup an amateur product now.


It's hard to tell what Australia should be doing. The Currie Cup and NPC competitions work so well as a pathway because they have a strong underlying development program in their schools. The two competitions are basically just showcases for guys to show off their talent, much in the way that college sport is in the US i guess. Whilst in Australia they are simultaneously having to get these guys prepared and upskilled for senior level rugby and showcasing the shallow pool of talent they have because the schools system is nowhere near as competitive as SA or NZ. New Zealand and South Africa basically don’t even need academies in the European sense because they trust the schools and pathway to get players up to scratch.

In the Northern Hemisphere the Celts are the most similar to the Southern Hemisphere in their structures. But they don't really have a development competition like the NPC or Currie Cup. Instead what they've focused on is investing in their academy programmes to get young guys up to speed and prepared for pro rugby as quickly as possible. Their showcase club competitions are also pretty crap to be fair yet they've managed to win against Australia fairly regularly now. Maybe they need to look at something more like that with an emphasis on efficiency of resources or the English system with a mix of private and union investment.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby Working Class Rugger » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 04:49

thatrugbyguy wrote:Not sure how I feel about it to be honest. Would need to see a better breakdown of the proposal.


I'd imagine the top 2 or 3 club teams from Sydney and Brisbane and the respective winners from the other club competitions in the other three SR bases. I'd prefer it if they look to a hybrid club/rep competition allowing the Melbourne, ACT and Perth competitions to enter rep squads and a squad from each of Sydney and Brisbane featuring players from the clubs that miss out plus pro contracted players not affiliated with the participating clubs. Then take the top 3 from Sydney and two from Brisbane (based on number of total clubs) and run a single round robin with 10 teams. But a lot will be dependent on broadcaster interest and value.

Apparently, according to Ben Whittaker beyond that they are looking to expand the A program schedule.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 05:46

I always thought Australia should basicaly have a second semestre competition with the same SR franchises, with young new players replacing the Wallabies and departed players. Maybe also involving Fiji and an extra RA-operated side with a development approach. More or less what you said I guess, maybe simplified.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby thatrugbyguy » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 10:58

Working Class Rugger wrote:
thatrugbyguy wrote:Not sure how I feel about it to be honest. Would need to see a better breakdown of the proposal.


I'd imagine the top 2 or 3 club teams from Sydney and Brisbane and the respective winners from the other club competitions in the other three SR bases. I'd prefer it if they look to a hybrid club/rep competition allowing the Melbourne, ACT and Perth competitions to enter rep squads and a squad from each of Sydney and Brisbane featuring players from the clubs that miss out plus pro contracted players not affiliated with the participating clubs. Then take the top 3 from Sydney and two from Brisbane (based on number of total clubs) and run a single round robin with 10 teams. But a lot will be dependent on broadcaster interest and value.

Apparently, according to Ben Whittaker beyond that they are looking to expand the A program schedule.


I don’t know. I’m just not a fan of this weird hybrid competition thing. I would much rather build a permanent competition involving the 5 SR teams, plus NSW Country, Qld Country, and Western Sydney. 14 weeks plus 2 weeks for finals, with Super Rugby playoffs against New Zealand, South Africa, Japanese and South American clubs at the end of the season. We need to develop a local competition that can produce rivalries and a weird hodgepodge of teams that rotate every year just isn’t the answer IMO.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby thatrugbyguy » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 11:09

victorsra wrote:I always thought Australia should basicaly have a second semestre competition with the same SR franchises, with young new players replacing the Wallabies and departed players. Maybe also involving Fiji and an extra RA-operated side with a development approach. More or less what you said I guess, maybe simplified.


We’ve never been able to get the structure right since the game turned professional. Super Rugby was originally a playoff competition played over 5 weeks before it was transformed into a proper league with 12 permanent teams. I sometimes wonder if we ultimately paid a heavy price for that decision.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby Chester-Donnelly » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 12:05

thatrugbyguy wrote:
victorsra wrote:I always thought Australia should basicaly have a second semestre competition with the same SR franchises, with young new players replacing the Wallabies and departed players. Maybe also involving Fiji and an extra RA-operated side with a development approach. More or less what you said I guess, maybe simplified.


We’ve never been able to get the structure right since the game turned professional. Super Rugby was originally a playoff competition played over 5 weeks before it was transformed into a proper league with 12 permanent teams. I sometimes wonder if we ultimately paid a heavy price for that decision.


I think you have. Even now it's still unclear what the structure should be. New Zealand and South Africa have always had a strong domestic championship. South Africa, another large country, has club competitions within provinces. It has 14 provincial unions, each union covering a province or half a province (roughly), each with a representative team. The NRC was starting to be something like that. It even had a division 2, like the Currie Cup. It seems a shame to abandon it as this seemed like a sensible structure.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby thatrugbyguy » Thu, 13 Aug 2020, 12:39

Australia’s biggest problem has always been its geography. Its biggest rugby communities are limited to certain areas of the country, which means we’ve never been able to properly establish the game nationally. Yes, the sport is played in every state, but the gap between the biggest rugby states and the smaller ones in terms of appeal of the sport is gigantic.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Mon, 17 Aug 2020, 17:30

I believe this will be the last RFU Club Competition/Premiership Rugby Cup final ever, if Premiership realy expands to 13 clubs in 2021-22: https://twitter.com/SaleSharksRugby/sta ... 6115537921

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby Chester-Donnelly » Mon, 17 Aug 2020, 19:02

victorsra wrote:I believe this will be the last RFU Club Competition/Premiership Rugby Cup final ever, if Premiership realy expands to 13 clubs in 2021-22: https://twitter.com/SaleSharksRugby/sta ... 6115537921


Why do you say that? The cup is for squad/academy players. Surely there will still be a need for such a competition. There is also an A team competition for those players.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Mon, 17 Aug 2020, 20:54

IIRC the Saracens proposal for a new Premiership/Championship had this idea...

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Wed, 19 Aug 2020, 16:46

Italy defending CVC in 6N https://federugby.it/index.php?option=c ... Itemid=117

CVC-6N deal is still to be concluded, right?

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby Figaro » Thu, 20 Aug 2020, 08:30

Ideally for a top level domestic system to work you need to have three things:

1) enough local public interest to sustain it
2) enough local cash to sustain it by keeping enough locally based players to sustain it
3) favourable geography

Arguably in Rugby only England and France have all three, whilst Japan and the US may grow 1&2 to the point that they do.

If you have too little of any one of those three, you have to cut back on one of the others to improve it: either by teaming up with other countries, which brings cash at the cost of interest and geography; or by cutting costs, which basically means letting your best players go overseas.

South Africa have the interest and geography to sustain a national competition but not the cash. They already struggle to retain their best players domestically.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby RugbyLiebe » Thu, 20 Aug 2020, 08:50

Figaro wrote:Ideally for a top level domestic system to work you need to have three things:

1) enough local public interest to sustain it
2) enough local cash to sustain it by keeping enough locally based players to sustain it
3) favourable geography

Arguably in Rugby only England and France have all three, whilst Japan and the US may grow 1&2 to the point that they do.


What exactly makes you think, that Japan didn't have all of this for years? They are the biggest tv market in the world, have very good attendance figures and 2) is probably the best in the world. Also their cities are very well connected. They've offered prominent Kiwi players well paid contracts for decades now.
Last edited by RugbyLiebe on Fri, 21 Aug 2020, 07:14, edited 2 times in total.
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: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Thu, 20 Aug 2020, 17:46

And the Japanese Top League has 16 clubs averaging more than 5.000 supporters/match - and before RWC success. Which means around 50.000 people in the stadiums every round. This is better than most T1 nations. Plus their varsity rugby with the same sort of attendance, some passing 5 digits.

Japan was never a T2. Let's not mistake national team level with domestic rugby. They sould "new" because, like Argentina, they had the extremely amateur mentality and suffered from the isolation because of rugby's British-centrism.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Thu, 17 Sep 2020, 16:59

I didn't know, but the (United) Irish national football team before independence weared blue, not green. Very interesting artcile about Irish football kits: http://www.historicalkits.co.uk/interna ... -1921.html

What about the rugby national team? They always weared green or they were once blue?

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby Figaro » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 01:26

So this image
https://images.app.goo.gl/xTqKBuew6wgRLLxZ7

Which seems to be dated to 1920s - suggests that the home Nations shirts were as they are now, at least by that point.

Interestingly the Australian shirt is blue!

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 01:35

According to this article it was green https://www.irishpost.com/news/oldest-i ... tion-74286

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby thatrugbyguy » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 06:14

Figaro wrote:So this image
https://images.app.goo.gl/xTqKBuew6wgRLLxZ7

Which seems to be dated to 1920s - suggests that the home Nations shirts were as they are now, at least by that point.

Interestingly the Australian shirt is blue!


This was because the Wallabies for the longest time were effectively the New South Wales rep team. In fact before Australia became a federation in 1901 New Zealand and New South Wales matches were considered test matches because New South Wales was an independent colony at the time. I think about twenty Australia v New Zealand tests as recognised by the ARU are actually All Black matches against New South Wales, but I don't think New Zealand recognises these games. Can't remember exactly. But the blue shirt carried over to the national team for years much to the annoyance of Queensland. Wallabies eventually switched to a mostly green shirt, before changing to gold in the 50's/60's to avoid jersey clash with the Springboks.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby Figaro » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 10:40

How many examples are there of international rugby teams whose strip is a different colour to the national teams of other sports?

New Zealand (play white in football)
Japan (play blue in football)
Germany (black in rugby, white in football)

What are the reasons for these discrepancies?

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby thatrugbyguy » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 10:55

Keep in mind that although the main jersey may be different there's usually still commonality across other sports. New Zealand soccer may be called the All Whites but they still have black accents in their jersey, the reverse of the All Blacks. Japan's alternate rugby jersey has always been blue just like in soccer. All Australian teams are Green and Gold, but it varies across each sport which is the dominant colour.

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby RugbyLiebe » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 11:29

Germany wore apparently black-red in the Olympic games 1900 (1880 Frankfurt colours until today btw, which basically played there as Germany).

Image

Image

Notice that France played in white.

Germany plays in white with black accents in soccer, because Prussian's colours were black and white. Maybe rugby chose black because of the tradition of the Olympic games another reason might be that rugby wasn't that established and there was no white in the German national flag left after 1946.
Also black is not well established. When we beat Romania 2017 at home we played in white with yellow/red accents.
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: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 14:03

thatrugbyguy wrote:Keep in mind that although the main jersey may be different there's usually still commonality across other sports. New Zealand soccer may be called the All Whites but they still have black accents in their jersey, the reverse of the All Blacks. Japan's alternate rugby jersey has always been blue just like in soccer. All Australian teams are Green and Gold, but it varies across each sport which is the dominant colour.

Japan's second kit was black or navy, in only changed very recently to the soccer's blue. Japan's soccer team used in the past white and also red as main kits, but I would say Japan is the main county that has a clear difference between soccer and rugby shirts. Rugby uses the flag, while the reason why soccer uses the blue is more of a mystery, with many theories, ranging from supersticion to aesthetics.

South Africa too uses now in soccer the reverse of rugby: yellow shirts, green shorts.

Georgia is also reverse if I'm not wrong, more white in soccer.

Belgium also used the reverse of football, with black shirts as the main kit, instead of red. But they changed now to red second kits, right?

Brazil's main shirt is yellow, like soccer, but our second kit is green, different from soccer's blue. Brazil never weared green in soccer, BTW, but many sports use green (volleyball, basketball, handball...). I think green is more iconic to make a difference from soccer. Blue is not the best choice in South America, packed with blue countries. Soccer only adopted blue shirts in the 1958 WC to be different from Sweden in the final and that worked, with the kit being kept for supersticion ("Virgin Mary colours that led Brazil to the first world title", something like this).

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby victorsra » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 14:18

Other interesting cases:

- Zimbabwe: yellow in soccer, green and white in rugby, red in cricket;

- Sri Lanka: yellow and maroon in soccer, white and green in rugby, blue in cricket;

- South Korea: red in soccer, white/blue in rugby.

- Cyprus: blue in soccer (hellenic colours), white and yellow (flag) in rugby;

- Bolivia: green in soccer, red in rugby now;

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Re: Growing rugby in Tier 1 nations

Postby Chester-Donnelly » Fri, 18 Sep 2020, 14:37

Romania

Soccer team wears all yellow (all red for second kit).

Rugby team used to wear yellow shirt, blue shorts, red socks, but now first kit is all white and second kit is all black.

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