With many people interested in hearing news about the upcoming National Rugby Championship, things are starting to heat up.
Details and announcements have been thin on the ground so far, and people have been worried about the competition, but it looks as though the NRC train has been set in motion.
Roar expert Brett McKay will be writing a two-part series, starting next Tuesday, with more detail on the NRC in which he’ll outline info from all nine clubs. There will also be a follow-up a week later from a competition/ARU level to add some more overall context.
Next Tuesday will be the Queensland, Perth, Melbourne and Canberra sides, and then on Wednesday it’ll be the three Sydney sides and NSW Country.
The Roar received this comment from Andrew Fagan, who is the GM – National Teams and Rugby Operations at the ARU in response to this article published today on the site, providing a little more clarity on what to expect from the NRC.
“Hi all – thanks for all the interest in the NRC – there is certainly a lot going on and over the next two months you will hear all about it. Given this competition was only formally established a little over 3 months ago, the 9 teams and the ARU have undertaken an enormous amount of work to ensure that not only does the competition deliver on its stated goals but importantly (particularly given the history of the ARC) that it is sustainable and viable. That is where much of the focus has been since mid-March and I am pleased to say that on Monday this week that the ARU Board formally endorsed all of the major component pieces that have been developed to underpin the NRC.
The 9 teams have been focussed on establishing their financial security, as well the establishment of corporate identities, venues and related agreements, staffing, sponsorship, player contracting, club alignment, fan engagement, ticketing structures and much more. I have been extremely impressed with the their contribution, passion and output.
The ARU has been focused on the plethora of formal Agreements that provide rigour to the team’s participation in the NRC (and security for the competition’s future), the establishment of the draw and associated travel and logistical arrangements, the development of marketing, communication and media plans, development of the law innovations, tournament rules and procedures, broadcasting and streaming arrangements, kit design and production, player contracting rules, competition sponsorship and the like.
With Super Rugby nearing the pointy end, the France Series successfully completed, ARU Board sign-off received and the work referred to above complete we will now focus on a strong 7 week campaign of promotion that will have the teams profiled (this has already started on Rugby HQ (the Macquarie Uni North Harbour Rays were on last week and the Sydney Stars tonight) and all major elements of the NRC launched (draw, team kit, broadcasting, sponsors, law innovations, venues, ticketing etc).
I hope this has helped provide a little background for you. There was a lot to get done to get this right and ensure it will deliver on its strategic imperatives for many years to come. We didn’t want to start releasing details until all the detail was squared away appropriately. With that now done, look out for the first series of announcements next week!
I will try and jump on regularly to answer any other questions that might pop up. Thanks again for your support and interest in the NRC. It will be a cracking season!
GM – National Teams and Rugby Operations, ARU”