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World Cup Momentum

Discussion in 'International' started by ozenzud, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. ozenzud

    ozenzud Juniors

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    The RLWC 2013 seems to be exceeding everyones expectations in terms of crowds, publicity and competative games.

    Has our international game finally turned a corner?

    I remind myself and everyone who will listen, of the time I was living in Sydney in 1987. Two mates asked me if I wanted to go watch a rugby match the next day. I said what match was that? Oz v France, it was a World Cup semi at (if my recollection is correct) Concord Oval. They did not have tickets and were buying them on the day. The 1987 Rugby World Cup back then, had less interest than the league world cup has now. BTW, I didn't go, I wasn't interested. Neither were many people as the crowd was about 17-19,000 (I haven't looked it up as I couldn't be bothered but thats within cooeee.) It was not much of a big deal at the time, not as far as I could work out.

    Give Rugby its credit, it is well managed. In my view it has to be, because its a c%ap game, but administered extremely well. League is a great game whos administration is appalling!

    We might have earned some respect, some fans and some money out of this tournament. If we invest that back in the internation game, we can finally move in the right direction.

    I don't think we can grow as fast as the Raa Raa world cup. By 1991, I was in England and it seemed a big event there. I increasingly wish I was in Europe for this event. It would be a fantastic experience and thats a real good achievement to have people thinking like that.
     
  2. taste2taste

    taste2taste Juniors

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    This cup has so far exceeded expectations, i wasnÂ’t really fussed to start with, but have enjoyed waking up and flicking on the tele to watch some fantastic games, the NZ v Samoa game was a ripper.

    League has a long way to go to catch Union, it is a very small fish in Uk and France.

    While i love league i am extremely jealous of their global reach, while Union is struggling in Australia it seems to be going great guns in Europe.

    Its a pity we didnt kill off Union 100 years ago when we had the chance!
     
  3. The Voice of Reason!

    The Voice of Reason! Juniors

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    Where Union was lucky is that the rise of their WC has coincided with the rise of big money from TV rights. Things seem to be a bit more entrenched now, I think, and we would be lucky to rise as far as they have.

    All of that said, this tournament is outstanding, so far. The 95 World Cup I didn't pay *that* much attention to, but I contemporaneously watched every game of the 2000 and 2008 tournaments. While there was some bright spots in the 2000 WC (Aus v Wales for example) there weren't that many. League was on the arse of its pants back then, post-SL, and there was a LOT more negative publicity about low crowds and "fake" national teams. I remember one W. Sailor even wrote in his biography that his was cranky about playing in front of 30000 people in the final (really 40000+... he got that wrong) while the Wallabies were in front of a sell out at Murrayfield.

    2008 was the reboot of the World Cup, and given the low base that they were coming off (and the momentum that international league had got from the 2004-6 tri-nations) I think it was pretty good. Didn't hurt that NZ won.

    This I year I was a bit gloomy. If you spend too much time lurking on RLFANS you can't help but feel depressed about every aspect of the English game at the moment. Instead, every game has been a cracker, the crowds have been fantastic and the vibe amazing. And while I am ranting, I want to applaud the scheduling that sees just about every game during the week kick off at 6am (AEST). Nothing better than watching some great footy then going to work.

    Here's hoping the next few weeks are even better.
     
  4. Misanthrope

    Misanthrope Moderator Staff Member

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    Are you referring to the non national team? :lol: The Maori side being there was an utter farce. New Zealand B.
     
  5. undertaker

    undertaker Coach

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    That sums up my feelings towards Union and AFL in a nutshell: crap product that is very well promoted by their governing body

    And you're right re: League
     
  6. Perth Red

    Perth Red Immortal

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    Would have been nice if Wales had of signed to the Northern Union like they were originally going to!

    The Int game will not grow yntil the NRl and SL allow it to. Regular top flight fixtures, decent competitions, decent support from the media and NRL/SL clubs in other countries are what is needed but the self interest of clubs will always get in the way unfortuantely.

    We only need to get another 2-3 countries up to Eng,NZ standard (Aus are always going to be ahead of the pack sadly) to make for extremely competitive 6 nations, ashes tours, World cups.
     
  7. Bronco Rob

    Bronco Rob Juniors

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    The tournament so far has greatly exceeded my expectations and while I have been slightly critical of some nations picking sides that look like an Australian B & C sides, I have warmed a little to the fact given the high standard of play and I haven't missed one minute yet thanks to my Foxtel IQ.

    But we need to capitalise on this success and I really believe that we have as a sport already started to change our philosphy on how important the International game is to the future sustainability of Rugby League. David Smith has already stated how important having a thriving International presence is and it's refreshing to hear.

    I think it's very important to limit the spots available for automtaic inclusion for the WC's to just the semi-finalists and have all other places open for qualification. Qualifiers will make the lead-up to the WC's more interesting and will encourage heritage players to play for their nations of heritage earlier than the actual tournament by participating in the qualifiers. I would like to see a tier system based on a nation's development and rankings for the qualifiers based on these tiers, give nations who are intent on developing their domestic comps a leg-up and some advantage over nations who heavily rely on heritage players alone.

    Another process to make the International game stronger is for the NRL/ESL to give salary cap exemptions for players from developing nations if they are to stick with their nation of origin. This will kill 2 birds with one stone, clubs will spend money on development within these nations and at the same time providing depth of talent within the respective comps. Developing nations will benefit from having quality players play in the strongest RL competitions as in reality we will not see any more than 2 or 3 professional competitions in the next couple of decades so we can't rely on nations improving by them relying on players from domestic comps.
     
  8. undertaker

    undertaker Coach

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    Unfortunately, whilst State of Origin is the ARL's cash-cow (I say ARL rather than NRL because the ARL are responsible for organising the rep fixtures), it will always take precedence over the international game in Australia.

    I do miss the mid-year test series Australia and New Zealand used to play every two years, rather than playing the ANZAC test and then having to wait until October for more test football. 1995 was the last time a mid-year 3 test series was played. Now that the domestic season in Australia has become longer since then (and the game much more faster and physical with more players on full-time professional wages), players are reluctant to commit to all these additional games during the season.
     
  9. Kurt Angle

    Kurt Angle First Grade

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    We have the next 4 years locked it by the looks of it.

    But an full oceania cup of

    Pool A
    Australia
    Fiji
    Tonga

    Pool B
    New Zealand
    PNG
    Samoa

    Should be looked at right now for 2019, with all the structures to be implemented now to ensure it's as successful as possible.

    The NRL/ARLC needs to hire a coach to lend out the ther RLIF, or their own development, to improve international sides.

    Fiji are obviously a small gap to being up near England's level of competitveness. Even remotely NRL journeyman quality players in their halves would see them a very good side. PNG just needs a little bit of polish throughout.

    6 years can accomplish that.
     
  10. ek999

    ek999 First Grade

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    I like that idea and think it would work quite well. I would like the Cook Islands in there somehow too. Perhaps expand it to a Pan-Pacific tournament with a qualification tournament in 2018. Australia, NZ, Fiji and PNG are automatic qualifiers and Canada, USA, Russia, Cook Islands, Tonga and Samoa play in the qualification tournament which can be expanded as new countries come up to scratch.

    At the same time to a European Cup with England, Ireland, Wales and France as automatic qualifiers (or even just England and France). Have a qualification tournament with as many Euro teams as possible in 2018 too.
     
  11. Kurt Angle

    Kurt Angle First Grade

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    Well I think they are the top 6, and in the followig 4 years leading up to 2023, the C.I can play off for qualification with the 6th placed team of the 2019 tourney... or perhaps 5 & 6 play off vs C.I for 2 spots, or something along those lines.

    But this is what is crucial, so very crucial... Tonga and Samoa need more games to keep players drifting to NZ or Australia as to remain competitive and develop combinations, and Fiji has openly declared they want to play big 3 teams... and 2 of them would play in the tournament.

    If Fiji is playing big 3 teams every 2 years in either a WC or oceanic cup, we'll have a nice number 4 fitting in.
     
  12. ek999

    ek999 First Grade

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    Absolutely agree with what you said re Fiji, Tonga and Samoa. Fiji are only going to become more competitive in the next few years and with the development stuff Joey and Freddy do each year and trying to identify talent. The biggest problem is that a lot of the talent in these countries are playing Rugby Union. Give the NRL clubs salary cap concessions to sign Rugby Union players who will make themselves available to play for these countries and not Australia or NZ and you could make Rugby League more popular then Union pretty quick. Players like Rupeni Caucau would have killed it in League
     
  13. The Voice of Reason!

    The Voice of Reason! Juniors

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    Actually, if I were to be a historian about it, the Maori team is very literally a national team, as are the "home nations". As are (the former?) Catalonia team. But none of them represent states, and the halfwits that pass for journalists in this country think that nation = nation-state = country, which of course we all know it doesn't. Nation <> Country or State (in the Westphalian sense).

    :sarcasm:

    But anyway... Lebanon was also very controversial back then as well, not least of all because they game didn't really exist in the country. Now the game is going gangbusters in Lebanon, and it was because of the springboard provided by the 2000 RLWC, so we shouldn't really be harsh on Italy and the USA. IMHO.

    On Qualification Tournaments:
    I really hope the momentum keeps up in the coming years. It was disheartening to be promised regular Pacific Cups, only to have them disappear after 2009. Hopefully the locked in 4 year cycle will allow this to happen. The RLEF strategy document certainly seems to indicate thus.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2013
  14. Dav0c

    Dav0c Juniors

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    You sure? NZ is catching up fast and league is growing in popularity here. We will dominate both codes eventually and then we will start hearing the "we don't care about league anyway" line from you Aussies. :cool: ;-)
     
  15. The Voice of Reason!

    The Voice of Reason! Juniors

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    I think those two to three countries to get up to (close?) to our standard will be all Pacific Islands. Can't see France improving massively, sadly.

    And fort he improvement to happen (to the PacIs teams) regular meaningful, full strength Tests are a must.
     
  16. coldhardbitch

    coldhardbitch Juniors

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    I think ultimately I'd like to see Fiji, Tonga, Samoa and the Cook Islands merge into one national 'Pacific' team, much like the West Indies in Cricket. Like the West Indies, the pacific nations are simply too small to ever be consistently competitive internationally.

    But if they pooled their players together, I have no doubt they could be a VERY strong side, and play a 3 match series v NZ every year when SOO is on.

    I think a merged pacific team would be a match for the 'big 3'.

    I know it was tried and failed in union, but much of that has to do with self-interest from NZ and Aus RU. If the ARLC allow this and promote this (i.e. players receiving the same pay as SOO players), then I think it could really take off where Union failed.
     
  17. adamkungl

    adamkungl Immortal

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    No no no no no no no
     
  18. vamosrafa

    vamosrafa Juniors

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  19. vamosrafa

    vamosrafa Juniors

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    Plus shows a good structure for next few years
     
  20. clarency

    clarency Juniors

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    I don't see why not. Perhaps not as a full time time but a specialised team that can play outside of official tournaments and whatnot.

    Would be fantastic for development and public interest.
     

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