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Thread: Things can only get better for rugby in 2018 - Wayne Smith

  1. #31
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    I think it’s more to do with labor trying to stitch up libs about road safety sponsorship but could be wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by vulcan View Post
    just read on ruck.co in club world rugby rankings the Force r the 2nd highest aussie club and some of the comments from fans around the world r interesting
    How do i find this?

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  3. #33
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    Came across this Wayne Smith article from August. Disagree on two things. Firstly de Clyne and Pulver aren't honourable men, secondly the Rebels aren't viable.

    WAYNE SMITH
    The Australian12:00AM August 15, 2017
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    Dear Sirs,

    You both are decent, honourable men and you must hate the position that you find yourselves in at present. You believe you are killing off the Western Force in order to save Australian rugby. I am asking you to consider that in the process you may be killing the very soul of the game.

    It is not entirely your fault that Australian rugby is in this mess, though you have contributed to it through decisions you made in the past. Well-meaning decisions, decisions based on the proposition that bigger is better. We, all of us involved in this ambitious experiment known as SANZAAR, have come to realise that bigger, in fact, is not always better, which is where the backtracking comes in and the Force go out.

    Perhaps you can’t conceive of any rugby life bar one spent in the company of New Zealand and South Africa. One partner the more powerful on the field, the other more powerful in a financial sense, off the field. And over time, you have allowed them to dictate terms to you. It’s flattering being in such company, with two of the greatest rugby nations on earth, but don’t forget that Australia itself won two World Cups and played in two other finals. OK, we might have fallen off the pace, pretty severely this year especially, but Australia will rise again. There are too many good people putting their shoulders to the wheel for it not to happen.

    You clearly know what a dreadful thing you are doing in condemning the Western Force to death. It’s written in your faces at press conferences. You outline the reasons it is necessary but perhaps not so much to convince us, but to try to convince yourselves. All those reasons you give — the needs of the many outweighing the needs of the few or of the one, et cetera — they may belong in Star Trek movies but they don’t belong in a team sport. The needs of the one do count, or at least they used to count when I was growing up.

    READ MORE
    Force start fight for survival
    We’ve all seen those movies, where a bunch of survivors are drifting for days and weeks in a lifeboat and the food and water running out. And eventually someone turns to the weakest member and says: you must die so that we might live. In the dark of night they do the deed and in the morning there is one less body in the lifeboat. But now their eyes are all watching each other nervously. And the next likely victim shifts uncomfortably in his seat. Doesn’t he, Melbourne?

    So, Mr Clyne, Mr Pulver, please don’t speak of how you are only following the decisions made at the AGM and EGM. Those votes were taken by nervous men, men who could see no way out of their own dire predicament. They tell you to proceed and then they avert their eyes and lower their heads. And in the morning there is one less body in the lifeboat and, curiously, no one ever mentions the horrific deeds done in the dark. But that should not be the way things are done in this game. Where are the voices defending the one singled out?

    If Geoff Stooke, who until Friday was a member of your company until he resigned as an ARU director when you ordered the Western Force on to death row, acknowledges that the financial situation is grim but it can be worked through, why is no credit given to him? Presumably he is operating from the same set of (unseen) numbers as you. How can sensible people, working from the same script, arrive at such totally different conclusions. Yes, he was once chairman of the Force but rather than block him out because of obvious bias, why not tap into his experience of working through the hard times.


    One last thing, something that has mystified me. The Force and, indeed, the Melbourne Rebels have largely sorted out their financial problems. They proved what could be done in a crisis and are becoming viable again. Which begs the question: why terminate one of them now? There was a time during the lengthy lead-up to the arbitration process when you were reconciling yourselves to being stuck with five teams. Reluctantly, you were looking at ways to make it work. So why stop now, just because you’ve had a win at arbitration? Please tell everyone, but especially the people of Western Australia, that you are not doing this to honour your word to SANZAAR.

    Well-respected colleague Paul Cully, writing yesterday in the Fairfax newspapers, said Australians want to know why opportunities for Australian players have been reduced by 20 per cent in part to fit a SANZAAR model they no longer like, and whose leaders they barely know, never mind respect. SANZAAR, I might add, was forced to adjust its model to correct the mistake it made in expanding to 15 teams, so the Force are paying for a mistake they didn’t make. “Quite simply,” Cully wrote, “they want to know if being part of Super Rugby is still serving the interests of Australian rugby.”

    That raises questions for another day, of whether Australia should stay in Super Rugby or go off on its own, or in company with New Zealand. But you have enough problems on your hands at present. One of the few advantages of this process having lasted 127 days is that the landscape has changed since you started down this path. The Australian rugby public and most especially the WA rugby public have been energised by this crisis. Things may be possible now that weren’t possible before.

    You know what you have to do. Look inside yourself.

    Use the Force.

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    'I may be a Senator but I am not stupid'


    https://omny.fm/shows/the-alan-jones-breakfast-show/cameron-clyne

    Link to Senate Report http://www.aph.gov.au/senate_ca

    https://www.change.org/p/rugby-australia-petition-for-cameron-clyne-to-resign-as-chairman-of-the-rugby-australia-board

  4. #34
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    Another good article from Wayne smith. The lack of foresight and planning from those losers is just mind blowing . Be good news for the IPRC though

    French Rugby Federation president Bernard Laporte.
    WAYNE SMITH
    The Australian12:00AM January 8, 2018
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    Australia was well into sleepy Christmas-New Year mode when things began to stir in French rugby.

    In the final week of 2017, Guy Noves, the former champion Toulouse mentor, was sacked as coach of the national side. For all the talk of French volatility, Les Bleus have had only four coaches this century — Australia have had five, England, South Africa, Scotland and Wales six apiece — so a change at the top had to be regarded as *significant.

    Much has been made of South Africa’s dismal fall from grace since Allister Coetzee took over from Heyneke Meyer, with the Springboks’ success rate dropping from 66 per cent to 44, but in fact the French fall has been even more dramatic.

    When Marc Lievremont was terminated after “taking” France to the 2011 World Cup final against the All Blacks — by that stage his influence as coach was minimal — France’s success rate stood at an average of six wins out of 10 Tests. Under Philippe Saint-Andre it slumped to 44 per cent and then, under Noves, it went into free fall, with Les Bleus only capable of winning seven Tests out of 21, just 33.3 per cent.

    Now French Rugby Federation president Bernard Laporte — one of those four French national coaches at the dawn of the new century and clearly one of the great survivors of world rugby — has installed his former assistant Jacques Brunel as boss of the national side. It’s a disturbing appointment, given that it raises issues about who will really be in charge of the side, especially since Brunel’s record as coach of the Italian side was a horrendous 11 wins out of 50.

    We now come to the part where Australia should stir from its slumber and start paying attention. The diminution of South Africa and France as international rugby powerhouses are but two sides of the one coin. The Springboks have suffered from losing way too many players to overseas clubs, the French because those players — plus a host of others from Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands — have so dominated the French Top 14 clubs that too few French-eligible players are now available to the national coach.
    Once, French props were regarded as the world’s best and would strike terror into the opposing side. Now, the Top 14 sides all boast Argentinians or Georgians in their front row, leaving barely a handful of French props to fight it out for selection in Les Bleus.

    That’s good news for the Wallabies, who have been embarrassed more than once by French scrummaging might at Stade de France, but it’s a sad development when one of the world’s great set-piece nations effectively gives the game away.

    Laporte may have delusions of Napoleonic grandeur about him but he commendably is marshalling his forces to take action against the takeover of French rugby by foreigners It’s been calculated there are 257 foreigners out of 596 players in the Top 14 — that’s 43.12 per cent. Four clubs, Brive (53.60 per cent), Oyonnax (53.40), Pau (52.60) and Montpellier (51.40) have more foreigners than Frenchmen and indeed Oyonnax could field an entire 23-man match squad made up entirely of overseas imports. It’s Laporte’s aim to reduce the overseas component.

    He wants to cut the number of foreigners in the match-day 23 to just five. The billionaire French owners are prepared to cope with seven. The battle lines are being drawn, but Laporte cannily has also changed the rules. Previously any club going over the limit on foreigners would merely be fined, which scarcely bothered the billionaires at all. Now, however, clubs are being docked competition points and the crackdown is starting to bite.

    For at least a decade, the wealth of the northern hemisphere clubs — and the miserable exchange rates affecting not only the South African rand but the Aussie and Kiwi dollars — has been distorting world rugby, yet nothing has been done. Only now that France has been brought face-to-face with the impact of foreigners is something being attempted.


    Even if Toulouse, which has only 13 foreigners on their books out of 38 players, cut back to seven on match day, that still leaves six overseas players who will get no game time each week. And you can bet it will be the same six. Suddenly French rugby will begin to lose its glamour and appeal. Yes, the players will still be well paid, but at the end of the day rugby players want to play the game.

    Whether anything can be done in England to reduce the power of the clubs, who rule the roost and have done so since the dawn of professionalism, remains to be seen. The fact that Bath were recently fined more than $100,000 by Premiership Rugby for releasing Toby Faletau to play a Test for Wales outside the approved northern hemisphere autumn window must surely have sounded the alarm that the entire system is out of kilter.

    At present, Exeter are about the worst of the English clubs in terms of foreigners, with just less than 30 per cent of their playing roster being drawn from overseas — including Aussies Greg Holmes, Nic White, Dave Dennis and Lachie Turner. But not until the strength of the England team is affected will there be any attempt to cap the number of imports from overseas.

    As for Japan, they surely won’t start reining in on foreigners until after they have staged next year’s World Cup.

    Australia should be fighting tooth and nail to halt the player drain. Instead, Rugby Australia is actually encouraging players, specifically Melbourne Rebels players, to head to overseas clubs to reduce the pressure on the salary cap.

    One of the two reasons the national body gave for jettisoning one of its five Super Rugby teams, the Western Force, was the benefit to the other four teams of the Force talent being spread around. Instead, with a couple of exceptions for the Brumbies and Waratahs and none at all to the Queensland Reds, they’ve all headed to Melbourne to be coached by Dave Wessels, the former Force boss.

    Understandable, but the end result is that Rebels players such as Nic Stirzaker have been forced offshore to Saracens on a short-term contract. He won’t be back until March but it’s not regarded as a great loss because the Rebels have also picked up the Test halfback in Will Genia. That loud bang you hear is the salary cap exploding.

    It’s a mess on which Rugby Australia is desperately trying to keep the lid. But is it too much to ask that rugby in this country start taking charge of its business

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  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jules View Post
    (from Wayne Smith of The Australian)
    One of the two reasons the national body gave for jettisoning one of its five Super Rugby teams, the Western Force, was the benefit to the other four teams of the Force talent being spread around. Instead, with a couple of exceptions for the Brumbies and Waratahs and none at all to the Queensland Reds, they’ve all headed to Melbourne to be coached by Dave Wessels, the former Force boss.
    ...
    That loud bang you hear is the salary cap exploding.
    ...
    It’s a mess on which Rugby Australia is desperately trying to keep the lid. But is it too much to ask that rugby in this country start taking charge of its business.
    Did anyone in ARU/RA have a game plan for post Western Force?
    Does anyone in ARU/RA know what the f*ck they are doing?

    It can all be summarized in a single word: incompetance.

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    Last edited by FingerTips; 08-01-18 at 08:49.

  6. #36
    Champion Bakkies's Avatar
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    One word to answer both questions no.

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    https://omny.fm/shows/the-alan-jones-breakfast-show/cameron-clyne

    Link to Senate Report http://www.aph.gov.au/senate_ca

    https://www.change.org/p/rugby-australia-petition-for-cameron-clyne-to-resign-as-chairman-of-the-rugby-australia-board

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    I sometimes wonder whether Wayne Smith is the only Rugby scribe who has any idea what he is talking about and who takes time to analyse things things properly. Or whether he just lurks TWF a lot more than the other lazy bastards who just seem to regurgitate whatever spin Rat's Arse passes them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shasta View Post
    I sometimes wonder whether Wayne Smith is the only Rugby scribe who has any idea what he is talking about and who takes time to analyse things things properly. Or whether he just lurks TWF a lot more than the other lazy bastards who just seem to regurgitate whatever spin Rat's Arse passes them.
    He may have to tread a fine line. Journalists who are too critical of the governing body may find their credentials rescinded, or other journalists get the scoops. Can RA piss off The Australian's main rugby journo? It is owned by News Corp, after all; but you never know with a group who fairly obviously have their finger so far off the pulse they can't tell the state of rugby in Australia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheikh View Post
    He may have to tread a fine line. Journalists who are too critical of the governing body may find their credentials rescinded, or other journalists get the scoops. Can RA piss off The Australian's main rugby journo? It is owned by News Corp, after all; but you never know with a group who fairly obviously have their finger so far off the pulse they can't tell the state of rugby in Australia.
    True. He was treading on egg shells right through the Senate inquiry. His boss already has a very damaged product and would obviously be wanting to limit the damage. Could be interesting how much News would want to pay for the next broadcast deal. Should IPRC go ahead I think there's a possibility that Murdoch will not be the least interested in ZA ( his customers sure aren't) and may be more likely to negotiate with Andrew Forrest and the NZRU while paying lip service to Rat's Arse (but in reality actually side-lining the bumbling idiots). Unless Super Rugby does a spectacular "Lazarus" in the next 2 years.

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    Murdoch has never put money in to Super Sport so he personally isn't worried about selling subscriptions there. The issue with him now is the direction of his company. He must be getting close to his 90s, the industries he has vested interests have changed rapidly and his children don't look like they are interested in taking it over.

    Nick Taylor has also filled his boots through this saga as Senator Reynolds has taken note of the emails he sourced from the RA that have now gone one off to ASIC per her Twitter feed.

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    https://omny.fm/shows/the-alan-jones-breakfast-show/cameron-clyne

    Link to Senate Report http://www.aph.gov.au/senate_ca

    https://www.change.org/p/rugby-australia-petition-for-cameron-clyne-to-resign-as-chairman-of-the-rugby-australia-board

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bakkies View Post

    Nick Taylor has also filled his boots through this saga as Senator Reynolds has taken note of the emails he sourced from the RA that have now gone one off to ASIC per her Twitter feed.
    I probably didn't do justice to Nick with my comment above. Not intentional. I was referring to the tossers over east of course.

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    Good story about DHP, which is worth a read.
    https://www.playersvoice.com.au/dane...UZ7BjgOQDtb.97

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    The last bit about the Rebels sticks in my throat though, JSJ

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alison View Post
    The last bit about the Rebels sticks in my throat though, JSJ
    Also the bit about Perth raised boys having to leave their recently widowed mother on her own in Perth, if they want to continue playing professional rugby. Good one ARU!

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  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alison View Post
    The last bit about the Rebels sticks in my throat though, JSJ
    Then how do reckon you'd go with a Kiwi bro in law who thinks it's hilarious to e mail you the Rabble season preview?

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