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The Roar

Conor

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Joined March 2020

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Premier Rugby is already streamed by the QRU, so they would just have to purchase the rights.

The solution going forward for trans-Tasman rugby

Do you feel this is the way forward for most young players Nic? Throughout this article I kept thinking about the Reds under Thorn constantly changing 9, 10 and 15 and swapping the back row/second row. I get the feeling for all those young players it would be better to get them into a position and let them feel comfortable to get the most out of them, and for them to get the most out of their careers.

Will Dave Rennie remember Australia’s forgotten man?

I appreciate the sentiment JB, but I think you have largely missed the point of the article. The major point being that there are underlying problems within the game, but that the primary issue that has driven dwindling crowd numbers and TV viewers (which in turn hurts revenue) is poor on-field performance. There is just way too much focus on the governance and tournament structure in rugby at the moment.

Nowhere in the article does it state that rugby shouldn’t change, and I started in 2013 (not the 90’s) for a few reasons, things were pretty rosy at that point financially, all the current issues were well entrenched and on-field performance was solid at Super and National level. In fact, looking at the Reds from 2010-2013 they had higher average attendances over that period than the Broncos or Lions (above 30k), they won the comp and things looked very bright, but high turnover of coaches and players led to disengagement, and now they are averaging 11k per game. If you want to break the cycle of failure you need revenue, if you want to increase revenue you need on field performance, if you want to change the cycle of on field performance you need stability in the coaching and playing ranks.

On a side note, as a student in biological evolutionary studies I appreciate the first sentence. However, it’s generic and largely incorrect. Intelligence does lend itself to increased survivability of species and, depending on what type of strength you are looking at, strength does as well.

For Australian rugby's current woes, look back to 2013 for the problems and solutions

Regardless of who picks the side, it’s tough being a ten when the pack is being dominated. That’s a fair enough comment.

Foley (like a lot of Australian players) had a tough time between 2016-2019, but he has still won a super rugby competition and played in a World Cup final at 10. He just isn’t the right 10 for the helter skelter game plan that Cheik wanted to play.

Why Dave Rennie will have to build his Wallabies from the ground up

That is light, he made his debut quite young, so hopefully an old stat. I really rate his one on one defence. If he were sitting in-between a midfield of Toomua and TK it might be a solid unit, if a bit stodgy in attack.

Why Dave Rennie will have to build his Wallabies from the ground up

It would be great to see a lot of these coaches come back into senior roles. Have any particular coaches in mind that could make the step up into a SR senior or assistants role?

For Australian rugby's current woes, look back to 2013 for the problems and solutions

Succinct! Yes, the endless reviews seem to produce very little actual change. At the moment there seems to be a heavy focus on the structure of Super Rugby, RA and international competitions, when I think the way to get the most immediate turnaround in the game is by keeping the same coach and 23 players in the squad for a few seasons.

The argument between strengthening the heartland and supporting the expansion areas is fascinating, and the status-quo might get tested if external investors are more heavily involved in the game

For Australian rugby's current woes, look back to 2013 for the problems and solutions

I was a big fan of Morahan and it was sad to see him leave.

For Australian rugby's current woes, look back to 2013 for the problems and solutions

Thanks Nick, great article again! I think the side he will pick will be fairly stable. But I see the midfield and second rows as problems to be resolved. How do you see Hamish Stewart at 12? He has a good work rate, solid in defence and a long kicking game.

Which of the young brigade in the midfield/loose forward/second row do you see as getting a wallabies jersey this year?

Why Dave Rennie will have to build his Wallabies from the ground up

I really like Toomua. I think Foley was harshly judged at times, as he was playing behind a dominated pack, Toomua is able to make a difference through his strength both in A and D even when the forwards were getting pushed backwards. I also liked his tactical kicking game earlier this year. He seems to be growing as a player.

Why Dave Rennie will have to build his Wallabies from the ground up

Thanks JC, winning and hope are crucial for the public, otherwise as we have seen, people switch off. There are frameworks in place for coaching/referring at each state. However no centralised model as of yet. I think the problems largely sit with putting in, and then sacking inexperienced coaches and having the correct pathway for them to make it. The NRC hoped to bridge that gap, but it looks like it won’t continue.

The guys who have been successful at Super level in Australia recently tend to have had experience overseas (White, McKenzie and Cheika). This might be a good proposition for Larkham to return to a head role and make the most of it. I am optimistic for the first time in a while now. McKellar looks the goods, the Reds have good back room staff, and I think Wessels is a good prospect. At Wallaby level I really like the assistants and head coach. Plus the under 20’s coming through look fantastic. It’s not all doom and gloom!

For Australian rugby's current woes, look back to 2013 for the problems and solutions

Yes, Corne, South Africa have really been the canary in the coal mine for Australia and New Zealand in this regard, South Africa losing so many players overseas before the other two nations. Australia and New Zealand now feeling the full force of the European and Japanese club recruitment drive. I don’t want South Africa to leave Super Rugby, but it’s looking like they might have to look after their own domestic rugby sustainability.

For Australian rugby's current woes, look back to 2013 for the problems and solutions

Some interesting points Muglair, I completely agree that the governance structure is seriously flawed. Also on the success of the Brumbies being driven by stability, particularly in contrast with the Reds over the course of the professional era. The major problem I see is, a lot of these issues are thrown around as the cause of Australian Rugby’s woes, but they were all in place when we were at our most successful. In terms of putting international quality players out on the park and getting behind those teams in the crowd, we have done well at times.

Interesting side note, the problem of installing parochialism on the field and in the stands but leaving it behind in the board room is a challenge for every sport!

For Australian rugby's current woes, look back to 2013 for the problems and solutions

Agreed, an Australian one would be great. So I will have a dig!
1. Harry
2. Kearns
3. Crowley
4. Eales
5. Connors
6. Elsom
7. Waugh
8. Kefu
9. Whittaker
10. Flatley
11. Latham
12. Horan
13. Herbert
14. Tune
15. Burke

A New Zealand XV that hasn't won a Super Rugby title