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Micko

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Joined December 2018

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Start of February is way too early. Even start of March is way too early. Needs to start around the middle to the end of March, and finish up in August/September.

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

Cricket starts in a couple of days sheek: 1st test vs Sri Lanka. 👍 🏏

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

Not here to be diplomatic Ken. I’m here to call things as I see them. Both sides need to be pragmatic, and in particular NZR. NZ just doesn’t have the economy to fund pro sports, and is lucky Australian sport is willing to hire New Zealanders, and have NZ franchises in our comps, which has given so many kiwis a chance to be professional athletes, coaches etc that they won’t get in NZ. The problem is is that the current arrangement (heavily favoured by NZR and kiwis in general) is making less money than ever.
I’m an Australian fan who turned off SR in the mid to late 2000’s due to the boring pointless nature of it all, and the clearly compromised nature of the comp itself. We know what works in Australian sport, and the present SR model is about as far away as you can get from that. Time to get off the Titanic Ken!

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

The point is…people like what sports they like ozinsa. Your point about the Storm etc doesn’t really prove much that we didn’t know already: some sports are liked more in some geographical locations than others. Melbourne has a staggering amount of high profile sporting events and professional franchises across a whole range of sports. So what if the locals prefer other sports than what you’d prefer them to???

What is the sporting capital of the world?

Why though???!

Would Western Australia be the State of Origin surprise packet?

“Salad”? Is that what you got out of it???! I thought I articulated the problem pretty well, especially the cultural differences between Australians and Kiwis/expat Kiwis. Disappointed with you Ken. 👎

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

Fair assumptions based on history my friend. 👍

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

The overhaul I would do would be new (and more) franchises created in Sydney & Brisbane/SEQ: the code’s heartlands. The state based format would end (as pro franchises) and the “Waratahs” & “Reds” name & identity IP would disappear, and only appear as part of genuine NSW & QLD state rep teams (whether state of origin, or/and crossover provincial matches/tournaments with their NZ etc counterparts).
Either we could start from scratch (which I don’t think is feasible) or we allow some retaining of present identity. Brumbies, Force & Rebels would remain, along with a new SFS based franchise & new Suncorp based franchise, of which all five franchises are allowed to retain only 18 contracted players from the previous SR season to retain fan identity with players and competitiveness with their playing stock. The rest could either be put in a draft, or just open slather recruitment, with only one new franchise added in the first year.
A gradual process of expansion over a decade to a dozen years could be implemented, with franchises in Northern Sydney (North Sydney Oval?) & Sydney’s Northern Beaches region (Brookvale Oval?) being key heartland areas to introduce pro franchises eventually to get Sydney to at least the bare minimum 3 franchises. Brisbane I’m not sure of, so whether it has the big enough support base for the sport, so could it support more than one pro franchise, with maybe two based at Suncorp, or a geographical rivalry with a franchise based out of Redcliffe or another location around it’s metro area? Would like to hear from locals. I would focus on a franchise for Sunshine Coast first over Gold Coast as it’s currently not represented in a national comp in any footy code, and Gold Coast is dubious due to it’s renowned reputation as a sporting graveyard, and now has intense competition with NRL & AFL franchises in any case. Not sure if the market in GC is big enough to sustain a RU franchise, maybe one day?
To ensure local players get a crack, but not compromise the competition, we could put a limit of max 8 internationals per squad, that way Kiwis, Saffas, miscellaneous PI’s, Argies (& other Americans), and Europeans can be playing here if they desire.
The Wallabies Geoff? The national team should be an entirely different proposition, not linked in any way to the pro comp’s format. It can look after itself. In future all mandates and protectionism will be dropped for the national team, as players shouldn’t be punished for choosing to seek professional opportunities where they desire. This is an outdated amateur era hangover that Australia & NZ endure with. The comp would see eventual wage growth and available pro opportunities open up anyway as more teams and more fans, thus more viewers, thus more revenue, so players will have less desire to play overseas, but you’ll never be able to stop those guys. Did Mack Hansen leave because he wasn’t good enough, or because there were way too few pro opportunities in Australia for young talent like him to learn and grow his talent, and thus encourages talented young guys to leave and pledge their allegiance to a foreign country?

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

“Top ranked sides” Paulo? 😛
They’re literally most of the nations in Europe where the sport has any popularity or cultural impact. And they’re about half of the global nations for the sport full stop. Give me a break!! 😂

Life of Hamish: We should recognise what McLennan has done for Australian rugby

The point is that rugby union isn’t big enough in Australia to realistically have an international one off/multi-game format with NZ in their national sport and worshipped national team, but we all know who wanted this, and who benefited the most.
This is linked to the current failed SR format Paulo, with kiwis wanting a disingenuous weird protectionist development war format in the pro era, where Australia can’t sustain many competitive teams due to not having the player depth NZ has, but can’t really afford to have the sport only represented by just three pro franchises nationwide. Yet NZR has made no concessions in evening up the competition by dropping their mandate, and allowing NZ players to play for Australian franchises.
This parochial mentality from NZ has meant that SR is an objective failure, and bleeds money on both sides of the Tasman. Meanwhile the AFL & NRL are increasing their viewership and ratings over the past decades, and SR further sinks into an abyss!

Life of Hamish: We should recognise what McLennan has done for Australian rugby

The ARC was a development comp: an extra tier shoved in below SR and above club rugby. The ARC was ONLY going to work as the elite level pro comp for Australia, taking over from the stale and failing SR format.

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

Big difference between an amateur era state/provincial interaction, with a fully integrated pro comp. You (& RA & NZR) need to move into the 21st century of professional sport and create an engaging and dynamic professional format of the sport. Super Rugby has been a lame duck model in BOTH Australia & NZ for a decade or more, precisely because of the outdated amateur era protectionism and development focus on the national side. Any decent pro comp has to be a priority in it’s own right, and SR is compromised for these exact reasons

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

Because there’s nothing left to lose?

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

Geoff, let’s be blunt. You don’t provide an objective analysis here as you have a clear bias towards maintaining the status quo model. As a kiwi living in Melbourne, instead of seeing a local anonymous poor quality suburban comp (probably half filled with Kiwi expats & PI’s), you’ve now had an expensive new franchise created (Rebels), and an expensive anonymous national league development comp (ARC/NRC), neither of which will ever run a profit, or create much interest, but you get to see a higher quality of rugby, and with SR specifically you regularly get to travel to AAMI Park to watch NZ franchises & players. So not surprising you and the migrant kiwi population love this lame duck SR model.
Last week you disingenuously linked Netball Australia’s current woes with them adopting a national competition instead of a full trans-Tasman model, which they withdrew from a few years ago. Ironically their woes actually prove the case that being fully linked with NZ doesn’t really grow Australian sport. They panicked and paid over the top wages because of the now increasing competition for professional & semi-pro female athletes in Australia over the last decade:
1. WBBL
2. W League
3. AFLW
4. NRLW
Where is the growth in NZ to fuel increasing growth and revenue for Netball Australia??? NZ is maxed out as it is a small place and small stagnant economy where not much really happens. Hence why Australia sees an influx of kiwi migrants every year to join the staggering number (650,000+) of others that live here already (international travel permitting).
The current model of pro comp basically ensures that no profit will ever be made in Australia, with it’s outdated state based format. The AFL, NRL & A League are growing, yet Super Rugby still has only one franchise in all of Sydney & NSW, and only one in QLD after a quarter of a century! How is that supposed to drive growth in interest and revenue in the sport???
Australians (such as myself) turned off this poor comp years ago. Foxtel’s ratings showed their own subscriber base weren’t watching as much, showing even diehards were turning away. No FTA component of a broadcast deal will be successful until the competition itself is overhauled completely, but with a parochial, arrogant and stubborn crowd at NZR, is there realistically ever going to be an exciting fully integrated open recruitment trans-Tasman comp to drive growth in revenue? I say not.

The Wrap: Is Australian rugby setting itself up to sink or swim?

Didn’t realise he was Zimbabwean.

Zimbabwe's all-time Test XI

One of the best sledge comebacks too! 😂

Zimbabwe's all-time Test XI

Are we supposed to know the guy in the photo (BBL player)?

Zimbabwe's all-time Test XI

Nah, not convinced the players would agree as they’re all a bit daft (I suspect). The administrators should be on top of this, with or without the support of the players.

The AFL should send off players for violent actions that take a player out

The sport isn’t big enough anywhere to provide NZ much international competition. No matter how bad the wallabies are, Australia will still be in the world top ten. The sport isn’t big enough globally (and never will be) to constantly fret about some perceived downfall.
The problem Paulo is the kiwis have invested too much of their emotions into the success of the all blacks, as they became worshipped by kiwis after quickly proving dominant in the small global pool of nations they can realistically play in the sport (not to mention the bizarre outdated amateur obsession either, which also favoured NZ). The wallabies will never have a major cultural impact in Australia as the sport just isn’t popular enough here, and never will be. Investing all the time and resources into a relentless development war with NZ in this niche sport won’t work and never will work.

And the 6 nations Paulo? Based off a very old international rivalry and competition between most of these nations dating back longer than a century now. It’s a historic competition that really isn’t relevant to much at all really, so not sure what your point is. The Italians entered 20+ years ago, and are rarely ever able to compete with the other 5. Like Australia, the sport is just too small and niche in their country for Italy to front up every year and compete at the international level. The 6 Nations would be better served by possibly alternating with Georgia occasionally. Georgia (like NZ) is apparently a nation where it’s the biggest sport there, so far more likely to prove competitive at international level over time. The bledisloe cup was never an appropriate competition, but we all know who pushed for it Paulo! 😛

Life of Hamish: We should recognise what McLennan has done for Australian rugby

Argentina won their first ever match against NZ in a year where no SR with the Jaguares took place. England’s win in the 2019 WC SF was the most one sided dominant loss that I’ve seen the all blacks suffer in around three decades of watching. That was after an unusually long period of no games between England & NZ.
Any domestic comp could be made to be far superior than the dire SR model, which sees an uneven comp, no open recruitment of players within the comp, and an outdated state/provincial model. A lot more franchises would be in heartland areas (like other football comps in Australia do), thus more teams, more fans, more tribalism, and far more interest in general.
Worrying about what NZ do or don’t do shouldn’t be relevant. It’s NZ’s #1 sport and Australia’s #7 sport (and very geographically and socially niche to boot!), so constantly fretting about putting all their eggs in one basket and making it all about trying to be constantly competitive with NZ is a useless dead end, and has clearly been a failure for the past two decades. Time for something different as the status quo clearly isn’t working!

Life of Hamish: We should recognise what McLennan has done for Australian rugby

That’s not true Tim. England, Ireland & Argentina proved that success at international level against NZ in this sport doesn’t need to be reliant on a heavy interaction with NZ. No offence Tim, but this is a furphy that keeps being pushed mainly by kiwis and kiwi migrants, who love the inappropriate heavy cultural interaction between the two nations in this sport.
Australia needs a competitive club competition that has every pro franchise realistically being able not just to be competitive, but challenge for titles as well. This will bring in fans from all over, such as casual viewers (such as myself), but also the diehards will be fully engaged again.

Life of Hamish: We should recognise what McLennan has done for Australian rugby

Just insane that the sport doesn’t have a sending off rule! Geelong’s coach: Malcolm Blight, literally told one of his players to take out Hawthorn’s Dermott Brereton at the opening bounce of the 1989 VFL GF. Brereton bravely soldiered on (and scored multiple goals) with multiple broken ribs.
Just insane that three decades later that the AFL wouldn’t have any sending off of players for dirty cynical acts, taking out opposition players.

The AFL should send off players for violent actions that take a player out

Typical Victorian arrogance.

Would this Vic Metro team claim glory if the AFL brought back State of Origin?

Exactly! Victoria has 3 regional cities outside Melbourne with 100,000+ populations (and one of them is 250,000+!). WA doesn’t really have that many towns above 5000!

Would this Vic Metro team claim glory if the AFL brought back State of Origin?

You could have said that London traditionally has three annual tests at two separate London test venues. Now that’s impressive. 👍

What is the sporting capital of the world?

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