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Thread: IRB planning rugby World Series

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    Legend Contributor Flamethrower's Avatar
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    IRB planning rugby World Series

    IRB planning rugby World Series
    By DAVID LONG - Sunday News | Sunday, 21 September 2008
    IRB planning rugby World Series - New Zealand's source for sport, rugby, cricket & league news on Stuff.co.nz

    The All Blacks could play a test for a purse of $27 million at Wembley Stadium in London in 2010.

    The massive prize money said to be on offer will be put up by the International Rugby Board for the final of a World Series.

    The IRB are desperate to add some meaning to the rugby calendar outside the World Cup and have devised the idea of a biennial World Series which would involve the world's top 10 nations - New Zealand, South Africa, Australia, Argentina, England, Wales, France, Ireland, Scotland and Italy.

    According to UK newspaper, the Daily Mail, the World Series would begin as a round-robin competition, the sides playing each other once, with all Six Nations games and some Tri-Nations results counting towards the World Series

    Argentina would play Sanzar nations when they're not involved in Tri-Nations tests.

    For example, Argentina would play the All Blacks the same week the Wallabies play the Springboks.

    Tests between the northern and southern hemisphere nations would take place in the June and November test windows.

    At the end of the two-year period the top-placed nations would play each other in a one-off game to claim the title of World Series champions.

    Wembley Stadium is being eyed as the venue for this game because its 90,000 seats make it the most financially attractive.

    The IRB would like to get the ball rolling in 2010 and will push for this to happen at a meeting of rugby nations in November.

    An IRB spokesman told the newspaper: "A lot of goalposts will need a lot of shifting if the World Series is to get off the ground before the next World Cup in 2011.

    "It's a complex jigsaw with a lot of obstacles to be overcome but the idea is taking shape."

    Proposals for the bonus point system to include an extra one for an away win, to compensate those with only four home fixtures, are under consideration.

    Of course the All Blacks would have to make the final to have a chance of capturing the huge windfall. But as the No 1 ranked side in the world, few would back against them making it.

    The huge money generated from the fixture would have massive spin offs for the NZRU which has been running at a loss for the past couple of years and has been losing the fight to keep star players in the country because of its inability to pay the high wages clubs in Europe can.

    Despite calls to the NZRU by Sunday News, no one was made available to talk about its views on the World Series.

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    Except that we won't be playing tests in June much longer. Interesting idea though - all it will take is for the IRB to force European clubs to release international players.

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    Veteran beige's Avatar
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    What if a team like Fiji makes it in to the top 10 - would they have to miss out in favour of a 6N team?

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    It would certainly make Fiji, Samoa and Tonga vs Italy, Scotland and Ireland interesting...

    Good point though - more rugby and money for the "Haves".

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    Veteran beige's Avatar
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    It's a bit ambiguous actually...

    Right now the top 10 just happens to be the 3N & 6N nations along with Argentina, so I guess they'd play in the first edition. I'm wondering what happens in future - whether it will always be those same teams or if other countries will get the chance to compete if they crack the top 10 as well.

    If it will always be those same teams then I'm not really a fan, but if it's purely based on the world rankings then it could be a good thing...

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    Legend Contributor Flamethrower's Avatar
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    I'd say there would have to be a cut off date each season and the top 10 on that day would be the teams that compete. It's the only way it would be fair and offer any chance of other Nations getting in.

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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamethrower View Post
    I'd say there would have to be a cut off date each season and the top 10 on that day would be the teams that compete. It's the only way it would be fair and offer any chance of other Nations getting in.
    you would have to say that acut off date would have to be used, venues would need to be booked and travel plans finalised for those matches that are not apart of 3N or 6N.

    these are the top 15 nations in world rugby

    1(1) NEW ZEALAND 92.04
    2(2) SOUTH AFRICA 87.75
    3(3) AUSTRALIA 85.69
    4(4) ARGENTINA 83.36
    5(5) ENGLAND 83.16
    6(6) WALES 80.12
    7(7) FRANCE 78.99
    8(8) IRELAND 77.18
    9(9) SCOTLAND 76.92
    10(10) ITALY 75.57
    11(11) FIJI 75.24
    12(12) SAMOA 72.57
    13(13) TONGA 70.05
    14(14) GEORGIA 69.43
    15(15) CANADA 68.81

    looking at this you would have to imagine that Fiji are the only nation capable of getting in at the moment, at risk of dropping out would have to Italy and possibly Scotland as well

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    Immortal GIGS20's Avatar
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    Yeah but it'd be bloody hard work for Samoa to climb 4.5 points back of scotland, that'd take the best part of a season unless there wasa spate of unusual results!

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    C'mon the

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    Champion NTT's Avatar
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    Maybe there should be a play off between the 2 teams that finish 9 and 10 in the tournament and 11 and 12 in the world rankings. It would give some of the financially struggling nations the chance to earn some of the spin off dollars.

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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    possibly relegation/promotion? That would definately get rid of the possibility of the same 10 nations going head to head

    Teams 9 & 10 face the drop and 11 & 12 get promoted, have a 2nd tier world series happening with teams 11-20. Gets some of the other nations, such as the US and Canada and Georgia etc into regular competition
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    Veteran beige's Avatar
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    I actually didn't mind just using the rankings (gives them some meaning) but just thinking about it - if the top 10 countries are all playing each other they'll be earning more rankings points than the other countries, right? So the top 10 would stay the same

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    It would be the same ten but the opportunity is there for the order to change dramatically.
    Using Jargs' ladder, if say Scotland pulled off a win over Argentina (hope no-one is looking over my shoulder!) then they exchange points and Scotland on one result could potentially rise to say sixth.
    It is far easier to have large moves at the middle to bottom of the top ten than at the top.
    That is, it is far easier to move from say 10th to 5th than it is from 3rd to 1st.
    Undecided if I like the idea but it is worth pursuing if there is a potential of more meaningful International competition every other year.
    It would bring in bigger squads I imagine as National teams would need to "peak" twice in a World Cup cycle.

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    Veteran beige's Avatar
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    Yeah, I'm sitting on the fence too

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