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Thread: Minnows to cash in

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    Minnows to cash in

    I think this is a bit rough, I agree with the principle that it is generally the Tier 1 Nations (hard to argue Italy v Samoa/Fiji etc though) who draw the crowds and add to the spectacle, but I think the discrepancy between Tier 1 and Tier 2/3 is far too great.
    Something more along the lines of every Country recieving Aus $1-1.5m and then the Tier 1 sharing the surplus would be a fairer way to go and would be a more proactive way of developing the Code around the globe.

    Minnows to cash in

    John Daniell | September 15, 2007

    EVEN before the first ball was kicked in Paris, 10 teams knew they would finish in front of their rivals in at least one respect at the World Cup.

    In a new profit-sharing agreement, the IRB will make payouts to each of the tier-one nations (England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, France, Italy, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa) in recognition of their "substantial contribution to the tournament and the world game".

    The IRB considers the exact figure confidential, but a source places the sum at pound stg. 3million ($7.2m) each.

    Tier-two and tier-three nations competing will receive only the pound stg. 150,000 participation fee. Travel and accommodation expenses are met by the IRB.

    "The senior unions lose significant revenue due to the cancellation of November Test matches," said IRB director of communications Greg Thomas, although this applies only to the northern hemisphere which hosts the southern hemisphere unions during the (northern) autumn.

    "One country should not benefit from the tournament every four years ... this way there is an equalisation of the surplus to the key stakeholder unions," Thomas said.

    Samoa moved from 11th to 10th place in the world rankings before the World Cup when Scotland, which receives 20 times more than Samoa's payment, slipped to 11th after a defeat by South Africa at Murrayfield on August 25.

    It is not, though, about competitiveness but who represents the biggest draw for sponsors and broadcasters.

    The tiny Pacific nation has benefited over the past two years from the high-performance structures put in place by the IRB. But Michael Jones, the former New Zealand flanker now coach of Samoa, is still frustrated at a perceived lack of support.

    "We're grateful for what the IRB has done, but we need more," Jones said. "If rugby really wants to become a global sport, countries like ours need to have the opportunity of making it to the next level."

    Some of the minnows have punched above their weight over the past week, despite an enormous disadvantage in talent and experience. Namibia, Portugal, Romania, Georgia, Canada and the United States will have taken heart from courageous showings.

    Still, the fact remains that, apart from Wales in 1987, and Scotland in 1991, the tournament semi-finalists have come from a pool of five nations: England, New Zealand, Australia, France and South Africa.

    The Times

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    Well let's hope the improved performances from the tier 2/3's bring on a better divvy-up. I don't think it's a given that the tier 1 nations alone will necessarily draw the biggest viewer numbers at least in the pools.

    As an example, after England's woeful performance last night they will still draw pretty good numbers for the rest of the pool matches. But that will probably be because people will tune in to see if Samoa or even Tonga can stitch them up. If I were betting I'd back Samoa.

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    This idea of profit sharing is great, tho in my opinion, completely twisted.

    The "minnows" should be the ones receiving the bulk of the cash, after all they are the ones that are doing it tough. The Tier One Unions are cashed up quite nicely thank you and really don't require more money.

    I have been saying for a long time that it should be the responsibility of the Tier One Unions to help develop the Minnows, by sending touring squads of "A" teams or Under 19's etc to the minnows for Matches and training camps, and if while they are in the minnows home countrys the Tier One Representative sides happen to leave behind their training equipment at a local club - "oops so sorry, no no, you keep it - it would cost waaaay to much to freight it back, have a nice day."

    By supporting the Minnows the competition whether during the RWC or not can only benefit by having stronger teams world wide.

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    Got to agree with you exile, on all counts...

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    Not so sure I would go that far - you are basically saying that the Tier 1 countries should not be receiving money from the RWC and should also be responsible for developing the Tier 2 countries. On that basis, improving to the point of being considered a Tier 1 nation would be the worst thing that could possibly happen to any of the Tier 2 countries. It would essentially make "Tier 1" a designation of financial viability, not sporting competitiveness.

    I think I would be more inclined towards one or the other - the Tier 1 countries receive money from the RWC, but specifically for sending development tours. What I'd like to see for instance is both Australia and Australia A doing end of year tours, with the Wallabies doing the usual and Aus A taking on teams like Georgia, Spain, Romania etc. But it won't happen if it all has to be funded from ARU income which, it should be noted, ran in the red this year at least in part because of the RWC.

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    Aways a good idea! Maybe the northern hemiphere should take note of our pacific nations cup to develop the miniow nations up there. The big problem is getting the financial backing for these teams at home and when on tour.

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