World Series Rugby no gimmick, says coach

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    Western Force coach Tim Sampson says people are starting to realise World Series Rugby is no gimmick, and he expects more star players to sign on next year.

    The Force’s squad was bolstered this week by the signing of former All Blacks lock Jeremy Thrush on a two-year deal.

    He joins World Cup-winning Springbok Jaque Fourie in the Force line-up.

    Sampson said Thrush’s arrival was more proof that players were taking a growing interest in World Series Rugby (WSR).

    “I think it’s out there now that it’s not a gimmick,” Sampson said.

    “We’re fair dinkum here. What the club is doing and aspiring for – we want to go all the way with this.

    “Jeremy has played under some of the best coaches in world rugby, alongside the best players in the world.

    “I think it gives our club and World Series Rugby some credibility, that such a player wants to come and be a part of it.”

    World Series Rugby kicked off with a bang last week, with a sellout crowd of 19,466 watching the Force beat the Fiji Warriors 24-14.

    Six more exhibition games will be played this year, before a six or eight-team competition is formed next year taking in teams from Asia and the Pacific region.

    Billionaire mining magnate Andrew Forrest is the mastermind behind WSR, and he intends to grow it into a powerful competition.

    The Force’s next match is on Sunday at nib Stadium, where they’ll take on a Tongan representative side.

    Thrush will arrive in June in Perth, and is expected to suit up for the June 22 clash with the Crusaders.

    The 33-year-old made 12 appearances for the All Blacks from 2013-15, earning man-of-the-match honours in 2014 in a 24-16 win over Scotland.

    Thrush made 110 appearances for the Hurricanes in Super Rugby. He has spent the past three years playing for Gloucester in the English Premiership.

    “He’s a natural leader,” Sampson said.

    © AAP 2018
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    The Crowd Says (19)

    • May 11th 2018 @ 8:06am
      I miss the force said | May 11th 2018 @ 8:06am | ! Report

      Amazing he would say that
      In other news, coach thinks his team can win this week

      • Roar Rookie

        May 11th 2018 @ 11:18am
        piru said | May 11th 2018 @ 11:18am | ! Report

        yeah but you have to take it with a grain of salt when it’s Gibson eh

    • Roar Guru

      May 11th 2018 @ 10:18am
      Timbo (L) said | May 11th 2018 @ 10:18am | ! Report

      Thought experiment:

      Will Chieka start naming Force players like Deegan in the Wallaby training squad so they are unavailable for games around the June test window?

      • May 11th 2018 @ 2:23pm
        Ken Catchpole’s Other Leg said | May 11th 2018 @ 2:23pm | ! Report

        So many questions, Timbo. So much unpredictability.
        Oz rugby is unpredictable everywhere except the scoreboard.
        Freedom of speech, a rogue comp with a new indigenous war dance,
        inclusion policies, transgender pioneering into elite sport, a CEO facing her toughest challenge yet, amateur theologians and volunteer civil libertarians both from within Oz and from a helpful nation nearby 😉.
        Who needs a winning culture on the paddock when we have so many games off the field?

        • Roar Guru

          May 11th 2018 @ 3:45pm
          Timbo (L) said | May 11th 2018 @ 3:45pm | ! Report

          Sorry, I am still a little bitter, Billy Meakes, Mat Phillip and Rona were in the squad all year, played no games in gold, yet with the exception of the Bokke game in Perth were unavailable for the Spirit.

          It was a great opportunity for the next batch of players like Clay Uyen and Jooste to step up and showcase their skills.

      • May 11th 2018 @ 2:26pm
        Ex force fan said | May 11th 2018 @ 2:26pm | ! Report

        If it does he gives a strong endorsement for the competition and Aunty Raelene may not be happy as she sees the Force as a parthway to Superugby teams. Force supporters still does not get the respect we deserve from RA and takes exception that our hard work to invest in the Future Force and local rugby will be undo in an annual raid of our locally developed players to crop up the failing Aussie franchises. I hope the Force gives preference to local players that want to stay at the Force and not those that want to use the Force as a stepping stone. We need a team that we connect to.

        At Sunday’s Mothersday game against Tonga, the local Tongan community will put up a show including sharing their culture, kava and dances near Gate 3. Please make sure you also get to experience those whole package and that we continue to applaud our visitors as we did with Fiji. In the end we want to set-up a competition that other teams will want to play in.

        • Roar Guru

          May 11th 2018 @ 5:40pm
          Timbo (L) said | May 11th 2018 @ 5:40pm | ! Report

          It’s funny that you say this.
          In my experience, With the exception of TJ Perinara’s Oscar winning performance last year, Perth Rugby crowds are normally respectful and supportive of the opposition players.

          We don’t really need to be told. The reminder is good though.

          Thanks in advance to our Westo-Tongan community for their efforts.

          I would also like to note that the Force and Hong Kong Women are the first half of the Doubleheader, kicking off at 2pm Western Twiggy Time.

          If anyone is interested in seeing what an actively inclusive Rugby organization really looks like….. Tune in or come on down on sunday.

          • May 11th 2018 @ 11:17pm
            Ex force fan said | May 11th 2018 @ 11:17pm | ! Report

            See there us a free manicu

    • Roar Pro

      May 11th 2018 @ 2:37pm
      Crazy Horse said | May 11th 2018 @ 2:37pm | ! Report

      As crowds contract in East Coast Rugby contingency plans are under way in Perth to possibly move the Crusaders game to the new 65,000 seat Optus Stadium as nib might be too small.

      • Roar Guru

        May 11th 2018 @ 3:40pm
        Timbo (L) said | May 11th 2018 @ 3:40pm | ! Report

        Is this genuine or some fine under the bridge work?

        The Fiji game felt “Intimate” at NIB to a near sellout crowd

        Perhaps the No-Shows on freebie tickets shouldn’t get them next time around.

        I have heard rumblings from Resident Cuzzies that they are already securing their tickets at full price for the game.

        I would have thought that NIB would be trying to recoup some money for the lost events and would be keen to host. That said, WA gov owns both stadiums, they are a significant benefactor either way and will do what is best for the city.

        June 22 vs Crusaders
        West coast are playing Thursday night, there isn’t anything on the next evening so it is plausible
        https://optusstadium.com.au/whats-on/

        • Roar Pro

          May 11th 2018 @ 3:48pm
          Crazy Horse said | May 11th 2018 @ 3:48pm | ! Report

          Yes we’ve already ascertained that Optus is available and that around 30,000 are needed to make it a viable proposition. Anything beyond that is cream.

          It also provides a further opportunity to test the rectangular configuration of the stadium.

          You are also correct that VenuesWest owns both stadiums so don’t have a problem with using the otherwise empty bigger stadium if enough tickets can be sold as they’d make more money.

          • Roar Guru

            May 11th 2018 @ 5:28pm
            Timbo (L) said | May 11th 2018 @ 5:28pm | ! Report

            I would like to see NIB’s Logo Emblazoned on the advertising hoardings.

            Off all the financial stakeholders involved in the “exiting” of the Force, they are probably the most aggrieved party. – Name sponsor of an empty stadium.

    • May 11th 2018 @ 5:15pm
      MarkfromCroydon said | May 11th 2018 @ 5:15pm | ! Report

      I’m not a Rugby officianado, but I’ve been watching a few games with a mate who is.
      Talking of experimental rules in this comp, I reckon there’s a few they could try to broaden the appeal of the sport.
      1. Change the scoring so a try is worth 6 points and a conversion 1. The overall score is the same, but you get more value for the effort of the try. It should encourage more teams to go for the try instead of taking a penalty or trying a drop goal.
      2. Pack the scrum in a different order. Get the two opposing front rows in first, then the two second rows etc. This should speed up the scrum and also lessen the chance of it collapsing or wheeling before the ball goes in.

    • May 11th 2018 @ 6:05pm
      Go the Force said | May 11th 2018 @ 6:05pm | ! Report

      One of the few articles I have seen on The Roar about WSR.

      But The Roar is east coast based, so not surprising.

      Interesting moves afoot (pun intended) in rugby.

      Saffa’s looking at more teams in Pro 14 after 2020. Bound to happen for so many reasons.

      Useless east coast Aussie teams playing NZ teams and being flogged week after week not so appealing to TV broad casters.

      Twiigy’s WSR gaing more momentum…..Adam Coleman and rest of the Force crew will be back sooner than we think.

      Interesting times in rugby.

      Not so many east coast comments on here though…..they wouldn’t want us west coasters to fail would they?????

      Maybe we need a west coast version of The Roar as well?

      • Roar Pro

        May 11th 2018 @ 7:15pm
        Crazy Horse said | May 11th 2018 @ 7:15pm | ! Report

        Write an article yourself.

        • May 11th 2018 @ 10:46pm
          Go the Force said | May 11th 2018 @ 10:46pm | ! Report

          Thks for the tip coach. I am working in Ivory Coast. I hope to make it to 2 games. Maybe you could write an article on the games you attend. Was there one on the Fiji game. Any help appreciated!

      • Roar Rookie

        May 11th 2018 @ 8:17pm
        Die hard said | May 11th 2018 @ 8:17pm | ! Report

        I am curious .

        Is there really that kind of money floating around in this to pay Coleman at al.

        Will this only ever be an adjunct to SANZAAR And never a replacement. After all the real strength is the RC

    • Roar Pro

      May 11th 2018 @ 7:18pm
      Crazy Horse said | May 11th 2018 @ 7:18pm | ! Report

      Note that the mysterious black line through the words “World Series Rugby” in my profile picture is still there it’s not in the original photo, nor in the one on my profile page. Just everytime I post.

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