KPM, I know you’d say Adelaide and I’ve explained to you before why that won’t work now and for the time being. Yes there’s a million people there but the rugby market is nowhere near mature enough to support a professional team.
Considering Sydney is currently represented by 1 professional rugby team let’s take baby step and add one at a time. 3 is a bridge too far for now.
8 teams for each country is a solid platform and provides adequate representation considering where we are and where we will be for the next TV deal or 2 (5 to 10 years). Already that proposal is jumping from 5 to 8 professional rugby teams in each country which is a major change not to mention a major cost to establish those new areas. Let’s not get too carried away and just ensure that our major rugby heartlands and population centres (with some level of rugby following... not Adelaide) are being successfully represented and we’re not p#ssing away money by setting the bar too high. Our coffers don’t have the depths that some of our rival codes do.
In Australia this TTL provides 7 of our 8 largest cities with a professional rugby team and directly represents 6 very important rugby heartlands. In NZ it represents their 7 largest cities/statistical areas that all have over 100,000 people. It also provides Auckland (arguably the capital of world rugby) with a second team. This league takes population and rugby popularity into account.
Johnno, I’m very aware of the difference between Australia’s and NZ’s populations but what you and your mock-up league don’t take into account is the differing levels of rugby’s popularity between the two countries. As I said, we’re now fourth in the pecking order nationally. And yes we have a population of 23 million, but rugby’s only a niche sport in half of the country.
Meanwhile across the ditch they’re all rugby nuts and although they’re one fifth our size, rugby has far greater levels of penetration in the NZ market. Hence NZ’s ability to be able to successfully support a similar number of professional rugby teams financially.
It’s not as simple as plopping a team in Adelaide or 2 teams in Melbourne because there’s a significant amount of people there.
This is my TTL (Trans Tasman League... it’ll become a thing).
Gold Coast (Skilled)
East Sydney (Allianz)
West Sydney (Parra Stad.)
Newcastle (Hunter Stad.)
ACT (Canberra Stad.)
Auckland (Eden Park)
North Harbour (NH Stad.)
Hamilton (Waikato Stad.)
Bay of Plenty (Tauranga/Rotorua)
Hawkes Bay (McLean Park)
Christchurch (AMI when it comes back)
Dunedin (Forsyth Barr)