The Roar
The Roar

Working Class Rugger

Roar Guru

Joined June 2009









Not actually suggesting that they should just that I could see them being the most likely destination for a second Qld team.

I actually agree with you regarding the whole sporting graveyard argument.

The five moves that would revive the Big Bash

I think the biggest factor CA needs to address in the BBL and what has lead to its decline in viewership is the talent issue. I’m not suggesting in anyway that the blokes who play Shield and One Day Cricket domestically outside of the BBL aren’t talented. Nor do I believe they aren’t entitled to be stars on a bigger stages even if for only 1 month a year. More that the BBL is suffering from a talent recognition issue.

By that I mean both in terms of attracting the better international talent but also involving our most recognisable names. For the BBL to begin to claw back viewers it needs to develop a means of drawing in the best possible international talent while carving out a window in the summer schedule to allow for all of our Top 25 contracted players to participate for the entirety of the competition. Not just make the odd cameo here and there. I think that if people start seeing names of players they know and view as elite in terms of quality those that have tuned out may begin to once again tune back in.

I’m not even sure the expanded schedule is that big of an issue if there’s a guarantee that you’re watching the best talent available anywhere in the world playing in family/viewer friendly time slots in the summer.

As for the number of teams. Well, I agree that if they looked to reduce the window in terms of size then they should looking at the number of teams. But instead of two I’d go with just the one. Either Canberra or a 2nd Qld team. Likely the Gold Coast. Surely the GC locals can be bothered to turn up for 4 games a season. Though, my preference would be Canberra.

The five moves that would revive the Big Bash

Would have be great if they’d have managed to get the Drua/Lautui involved as well.

July start for an Australian domestic comp, and it can’t come a moment too soon

Imagine having 20 weeks of Rugby all in favourable time zones. What a world. I find the NZ surprise at its appeal here a little odd. The ratings have strongly suggested that it would be the preferred choice for quite some time now.

SANZAAR wanting to keep the status quo sounds like the musings of the Sth African head if you ask me. Many in Sth Africa would welcome the door being opened to go north. I’ve believed for a number of years now that SANZAAR needed to reassess how it operates it’s competitive structures. The RC being key in that. Staying in place. But beyond that there’s a geographic imperative to sort out our domestic league structures.

My ideal scenario would be a TT competition featuring at the least 5 teams from each Aus and NZ with either a Fijian and combined PI squad or if not at least 5 roster spots open for PI players and 3 Argentine in each squad.

Would also like to see them look at Private Equity. But instead of in individual teams in an entire league concept.

Structure would be key as well. I like the single entity concept taken by Major League Rugby. Where each franchises buys into the league and while the franchises sign talent the league ultimately holds the contracts and enforces cap restrictions to ensure parity. Or as close to parity as possible.

Momentum clearly building behind trans-Tasman solution

A revision. Look to develop each 3×8 largely domestic leagues. Home and away plus finals. That’s 16 weeks. Then a post season Championship Cup like strucutre played after the July Test wondow either involvong a selection of teams from each say the Top 4 from each split into 2×6 pools or all 24 split into 4×6 pools. Playing each of the pool opponents once for another 5 games.

Either winner of each pool or the top 2 progress to the knockout rounds. Grand total 8 weeks. But importantly a minimum of 19 games each with at least 9 home games.

Super Rugby's simplest way forward

Probably should have detailed the structure a bit more. Each team would hold a seat and therefore a vote in the leagues operations. The unions being RA and NZRU would also have a seat and a vote. They just wouldn’t actively operate it.

The unions directly controlling it would likely only result in a simialr situation as we have now. That being SR being treated as secondary to the the Test team and being nothing more than an extended trial system. It needs to be treated and operated as a commercial going concern. The national Unions will have a link and a vote but they will only be one of a number of voices. Instead of the only one that really matters.

This way, they could then refocus their efforts on the national team and community game. Looking to boost things like governance and participation. While the professional game operates unto itself.

Tim Horan's way forward for Australian rugby

1) Yes.
2)Don’t know if one from the govt. is likely but WR could be an option.
3)Yes, but if the Sunwolves aren’t possible than perhaps the Lautui could be an option.
5) If this were to occur it would require a significant shift in how things are run and operated. It would need to be removed from under the direct auspices of the national Unions. Instead being run as a separate single entity league.

This would allow for clubs to sign players but they would be contracted to the league and this paid centrally. This would mean the bulk of thebroadcast revenue would be held by the league to pay players and cover operational costs. Clubs would derive their revenues via sponsorship and game day operation and gate takings.

This would also allow for things like eligibility to be widened within the competition in order to assist teams like say the Sunwolves or the Tigers (Hong Kong) to attract talent while making the participation of PI squad more of an option. A player could play for either the Sunwolves or Tigers while remaining eligible for the ABs or Wallabies.

Regarding the PIs. The only one capable of hosting a stand alone would be Fiji while Samoa/Tonga would need to likely be a combined squad based in either NZ or Aus taking games to the Islands. As above. The single entity structure would make this more workable but it would also require WR to come on board regarding covering a % of the travel and accommodation costs of both operations. Which considering they have being doing so with the Drua in the NRC and were doing so with the SLAR in South America it isn’t too much of a stretch to see them coming on board.

Tim Horan's way forward for Australian rugby

Super Rugby was arguably best when it was at 12. And perhaps we should have stayed with exactly that number. And instead looked for ways to expand the schedule.

Super Rugby not working for Australia – Moore

And we should have stuck to that. Instead of going with the nonsensical route we did.

Super Rugby not working for Australia – Moore

Ratings suggest that the Australian derbies are the biggest drawers.

I think SR needs to charge from the primary driver to a Champions Cup like structure. With the first part of the season being dedicated to domestic play with a second phase involving a broader Cup competition.

Say, the first phase would involve each SA, NZ and Aus running an 8 team league largely based around domestic boundaries running independently with finals. Followed by a Cup competition that would see all 24 teams split into 4 pools of 6 to play 5 games with the top 2 from each pool moving forward to the finals.

Super Rugby not working for Australia – Moore

Do you know the average TV ratings for the Shute Shield were last season? Because I do. Don’t let 5 games a season fool you into thinking the situation is far, far rosier than it really is. People aren’t watching club rugby in the numbers you’re assuming. Not even close.

A new path for Australian rugby

We need to give up this whole back to the future BS. Club Rugby will never be what many wish it to be. It just isn’t oriented in the manner needed. Simple.
I do agree that we need an alternative to SR. But I disagree with scrappign the NRC or at least the concept of it. If we were to cut ties with SANZAAR at this level (I think SANZAAR needs to re-evaluate how it competes within itself. And I tend to lean more towards independence at the domestic level and continuing with the RC at the Test level).
What I would like to see is the NRC become a single entity administered league that calls for bids from interested parties much in the same vain as Major League Rugby in the USA. In order to be awarded a licence bids would need to meet the financial criteria in order to even considered as well as demonstrate the ability to meet the annual cash calls the league would make in order to maintain operations.
A single entity league would mean that the successful bids would as part of the awarding of a licence receive an ownership stake in the league while not directly adminisitering it. They’ll get to vote on matters of course but day to day their only operational inout would be directed toward their own clubs.
The central office would control things like player payments held within a set salary cap (which would be determined according to several factors) for each team. They would also manage the operational costs of the league via funds raised by the initial licence fee and annual cash call. Major League Rugby also has a revenue sharing arrangement in relation to gate takings. That could or could not be implemented depending on a vote. Note.RA would automatically have a seat on the board of the league and as such would have a right to vote alongside the bids but like the bids that vote would only represent 1 in the overall total. Not like not where some states have mulitple votes. One seat. One vote.
I tend to think putting things like sponsorship and gate revenue in the hands of the bids would drive them to push harder to market their club in order to see greater returns.
In terms of this structure I’d aim for no more than 8-10 teams playing a double round robin format. Plus finals. So roughly 20 weeks.
As above. While RA would have a seat and a vote they won’t be adminitering the league and would be left to instead focus on the Wallabies and the community game. No more player top ups either when it comes to the Wallabies. Just match payments. This could very well lead to some players looking offshore. Well, then so be it. An amendment to the Giteau law could be made with a requirement for players to have played X number of games in SR or this new structure to remain eligible. Either way, they’d still only receive match payments to turn out for the Wallabies. And that would involve a winning bonus.
In regards to the community game. There would be a streamlining of the various bodies that compete among one another at that level. More more fiefdoms. All that would remain would be RA, the State Unions and that’s it. RA would run the Wallabies and provide funding to the state unions and those unions would then directly fund community rugby with the bulk of the fundign going to junior development and clubs.
This could be done with the district clubs involved in the process. Monies provided would be used to employ community development managers at each of 16 (yes, 16) club/zones. Based around the respective city and larger regional zones in each state. So in the case of NSW that would the 11 current Shute Shield clubs plus selected zones in the City including Penrith and the Macarthur regions alongside the Illawarra, Hunter/Newcastle and Central Coast.
The goal would be for each of the clubs/zones to build toward having 12 active junior clubs with at least 1 boys and 1 girls team operating at every age group at each clubs from ages 6-18. The Sydney clubs could either look to foster clubs (and form self contained district based competitions) or unite them all under their banner (so instead of say Eastwood having 12 individual clubs they’d just Eastwood but with as many as 12 boys and girls teams at each age group) and compete in a far more expanded Sydney based competition.Which would also include Penrith and Macathur at the junior ranks all the way up to the seniors as those areas develop.
A key element of this is that in terms of registration fee’s the clubs/zones will be able to keep everything but the insurance fee’s. This will be done in order to manage the junior competition as well as work toward the ultimate goal of each club having two boys and girls teams at each age level from 6-18.
It’s very ambitious. I know. But we should be ambitious. Fro there. A post season National Club Championship could be formed with the Top 4 from each competition split into pools.

The rugby calendar of the future

I’m somewhat conflicted. While it’s great we’ll see more Rugby I’m not sold on whether this is the right decision considering the current environment. I’ll watch of course. Providing it actually happens.

Force to make comeback as Rugby AU announce domestic comp for remainder of Super Rugby season

Which is why moving to essentially the SR franchises alongside the Force and Drua/Latui would work out better.

A national cup competition is an idea worth exploring

I agree with the structure and format of pretty much everything you’ve outlined above. Local comp – NCC – NRC featuring all of our pro franchises plus Fiji minus Wallaby squad members when not available is exactly how it should be.

The trick will be getting everyone on board. I tend to think the best option would be align the local competitions with SR. Have the NCC run during the Test window and the NRC from August.

A national cup competition is an idea worth exploring

I quite like the the concept of a National Cup competition. Which would be the best way forward assuming they don’t opt for the divisional set up. Mainly becuase I believe if they’re going to go down that path they need to commit and make it the core structure across the country and not some add on.
There’s also apparently interest from the likes of Townsville to participate and with the recent noises from the Hunter I’d imagine Newcastle would also be keen. Which going eith the Cup concept would make their participation possible.
So, if they do go with the Cup then may I suggest expanding the field from 24 teams to 32. This would allow for the current 21 Shute/Hospitals Cup teams plus two from Canberra. Either being the top 2 from the Canberran club comp. or say the Vikiings plus a rep. based squad made up of the rest of the clubs and Melbourne. I would like to see Perth involved as well depending on costs. But assume they aren’t for now.
You could then open up participation to regional and state based rep squads such as the aforementioned Townsville and Newcastle. Perhaps the likes of the Darwin Mozzies and Adelaide Blackfalcons might be interested. Even squads like Sydney Subarban could be given a look in to get to 32.
From there two most of the obvious format choices would be 8×4 pools with everyone playing 3 games and the top seed progressing. Or a straight knockout whittling down teams from 32 to 2 over 5 weeks.
Though a variant of that could be to run not only a Cup but also a Shield, Plate and Bowl. So in the first week the winners of all games remain in the Cup competition while the losers automatically move into the Plate. In the second week the losers from the Cup then fall into the Shield and the losers in the Plate fall into the Bowl. FRom there in each competition it’s a straight you lose you’re gone format. This would give every participate at least 3 games and provide each game with something on the line.
Crap. This would have been the perfect solution for the World League issue.

A national cup competition is an idea worth exploring

When it comes to sport. FTA is still a major player. And will likely to remain so for the foreseeable. It allows a level of access that streaming platforms are still yet to achieve. There will be a day were either that isn’t true or we see the FTA stations work together to develop Freeview platform further to incorporate a similar business model to that of Hulu in the STates where you can still watch for free but with ads or subscribe and be ad-free.

RA boss expects Fox Sports broadcast bid

Except in the article by Panda where he discusses it in more detail he sets out the teams that would feature in the two divisions and would you believe it. Both Canberra and Melbounre feature.
Perth doesn’t. Which sucks. But I think that has to do with it being somewhat restrictive on these clubs to pay for flights, accomodation etc to Perth let alone expecting a Perth based club to do that multiple times in a season. Unless Andrew Forrest is willing to foot that bill as well.

RA boss expects Fox Sports broadcast bid

They have 10.1m mobile subscribers. Assuming every account is doubled up that still 5.05m. Alomst double Foxtel’s 2.3m (and falling) subscribers. Also, I would like to assume that Optus would have done at least some research into the viewing habits of their customer base before entering negotiations.

RA boss expects Fox Sports broadcast bid

The academies and Uni links for the Arrows has little to do at least primarily with building attendance. Rather a pathway and funnel for aspiring players.

The NRL can’t stand idle while the AFL takes America

A tie in with the Uni’s Rugby program. Quite a few of their squad have come from Life. They are looking or at least we’re looking to renovate a stadium that was used during the 1996 Olympics. But that’s likely a few seasons away.

Wrapping up Round 1 of Major League Rugby

What money? They currently pay for their broadcast and all Foxtel was offering was to not charge them to do that. They are essentially getting the same deal via RA.

From grassroots to the Wallabies: Rugby Australia to pitch broad package

There will also be two more franchises joining the league next season in LA and Dallas. LA is owned by Loyals Rugby LLC who recently purchased Austin and have poured a fair bit of money already into marketing that team with many more plans in the works. So LA should be solid.

Dallas’ owner has just received the go ahead to build a 2.5k seat stadium in the centre of Dallas.

According to the League commissioner there are 6 groups vying to likely two licences for the 2022 season where the league is expected to put a 2-3 season freeze on expansion. No indication of who but Las Vegas and Miami have been in the news of late. There’s been talk of a renewed push from Chicago. Apparently there has been interest in Ohio specifically Columbus where a purpose build 6.5k stadium would be the likely home. From there it’s anyone’s guess. A left of field one could be Mexico. Tijuana to be exact. The local soccer club colloquially known as Los Xolos have expressed interest in a licence in the past.

Wrapping up Round 1 of Major League Rugby

No, that wasn’t a great game. In fact, it was the worst game of the lot. Not helped by having two east coast teams playing in a massively oversized stadium in Las Vegas.

But the Championship re-match between San Diego and Seattle certainly was. It’s the first game of the season with most teams only playing 1 pre-season game. Same last season. By week 4 things clicked into gear and the season really took off.

Wrapping up Round 1 of Major League Rugby

The Warriors stadium ‘Zion’ has a capcity of 5k. Houston’s stadia currently sits at 3.5k (as does Seattle’s) but has room to grow. Which is part of the plan. Colorado’s hold 4-5k depending on configuration. San Diego hold 6k as standard. Both the Arrows and New Orleans play out of 10k.Austin has just moved to Bold Stadium which holds 5k. NY holds around 8k. The three expansion teams are playing out of temporary facilities holding 2.5-3k.

As for three franchises being owned by Australians. LA which is set to come online next season and Austin are owned by the same Australian backed group but I’m unaware of who the third one is.

Wrapping up Round 1 of Major League Rugby