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Thread: Australian rugby is incapable of creating its own national comp

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    Australian rugby is incapable of creating its own national comp

    Some of you may be interested in this discussion:

    Australian rugby is incapable of creating its own national comp
    Quick Quiz: which of the top ten rugby nations doesn’t have a national comp of any consequence? Don’t know? Let me make it easier.

    Which of the big four Southern Hemisphere nations doesn’t have a national comp of any consequence - South Africa, New Zealand, Australia or Argentina?

    Still don’t know?

    Try Australia.

    It’s a damning indictment of Australian rugby that, firstly, we don’t have enough participation players of a particular standard to play in a national competition. And secondly, that we haven’t yet been able to inaugurate a national comp. Although it hasn’t always been from lack of trying.

    Consider the following:

    2007
    The ARU under Gary Flowers implemented an 8 team national club Australian Rugby Championship (ARC). It lasted just the one season.

    The 30 leading WRC squad players were deemed ineligible, robbing the comp of its very best players. High player relocation costs and ground hire fees, and poor location allocation of franchises contributed to the downfall of this competition.

    2006
    The ARU implemented the four team Super franchises Australian Provincial Championship (APC). It also lasted just the one season.

    I’m still not sure why this comp was canned. Maybe the media and sponsors just weren’t interested, which is a pity.

    2000
    The ARU implemented a six team second tier national region Australian Rugby Shield (ARS). Despite changes in both the name and location of teams, and format of structure, the comp still survives.

    1996
    ACT Brumbies was created as third Australian Province to join NSW Waratahs and Queensland Reds in S12. In 2006, WA Force joined expanded S14 comp.

    To this day, New Zealand rugby and South African rugby are subsidizing Australian rugby, because without the Super 14, we would be totally lost. Maybe it suits New Zealand and South Africa to help us out?

    1968/77
    Ambitious national competition titled ‘Wallaby Trophy’ implemented, involving wight unions in two divisions. First Div - Sydney, NSW Country, Queensland, Victoria. Second Div - WA, SA, Tasmania, Qld Country.

    The concept of this comp was sound, but the timing was lousy. Australian rugby was both very amateur and weak all-round in the period 1968/77. Whether perseverance would have succeeded is something we will never know.

    1930s
    Victoria emerged as genuine “third force” in Australian domestic rugby. At least once each between 1930-39, it beat NSW and Queensland.

    WW2 stopped the development of Victorian rugby dead in its tracks, much to the detriment of the national rugby game as a whole.

    1882
    NSW played Queensland in first inter-state rugby match. Apart from two world wars, the collapse of rugby in Qld (1919-28), and the odd other year, these two states have a tradtion of sporting rivalry dating back over 125 years.

    So there you have it.

    This will be the 127th year since NSW played Queensland in our first inter-state match. And apart from our four Provinces meeting each other in the Super 14, we still have no national comp that we can call entirely our own.

    Argentina is the only country among the ‘top 10 combined player quality and economic wealth’ powers not to belong to an annual international tournament of some description. Yet they have a domestic set-up that shames Australia.

    Firstly, they have the Zona Campeonato (Zone Championship). This involves 24 provinces throughout Argentina. The top eight Provinces form the ZC, which is a promotion and relegation comp.

    The remaining 16 Provinces play in the Zona Ascenso (Zone Promotion). They are divided into two equal pools, a north and south pool, each of eight Provinces.

    And that is not all.

    There is also a 16 national club teams comp known as the Torneo National de Clubes (National Clubs Tournament). This comp works on a quota system depending on where clubs finish in their regional comps (equivalent of our Premier Rugby district comps).

    Eight clubs are drawn from Buenos Aires Province and the remaining eight from the rest of the country. The 16 clubs are divided into 4 pools.

    Yet Australian rugby continues to drag its feet on the issue of a national comp. Part of the historical problem has been a lack of depth of quality players and numbers. Part of the problem is the tyranny of distance. Part of the problem is the cost associated with transferring players to non-rugby regions.

    A big part of the problem continues to be the intractability of Sydney and Brisbane Premier Rugby district comps to place the national interest ahead of their self-interest.

    In a scenario that reads a bit like landing a man on the moon but not finding a cure for the common cold, we read stories about the Wallabies playing Bledisloe Cup matches in Tokyo or Los Angeles, and expanding the Super 14 to include not only Argentine Provinces but also Japan.

    Yet, Australian rugby appears entirely incapable of creating its own national comp.


    By Sheek @ The Roar.
    http://www.theroar.com.au/2009/01/16...estnut-apcarc/

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    Champion KenyaQuin's Avatar
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    As Gigs or somebody suggested previously, me for the idea of having an expanded S14 that would involve the Australian sides playing each other on a home-away basis.

    Moving on with that, having as a curtain raiser for each of these matches, a sort of Australian A-team/developmental/academy game. If Melbourne is not part of the expansion, then a provision be made for them to be included in this developmental league.

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    Player innocent quokka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenyaQuin View Post
    As Gigs or somebody suggested previously, me for the idea of having an expanded S14 that would involve the Australian sides playing each other on a home-away basis.
    So a part of the super 14, or as a stand alone comp, say an extra 8 games + another finals series after the season is done with if we play each other twice?

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    My feeling that it has been a combination of club self interest in the sydney/ a lack of parity between club standards and the killer is distance, fuel costs to fly teams around in a sport that requires large sqauds has been crippling the nbl with teams of half the size. to keep a melbourne team of quality the aru lost an arm and a leg in shifting players from sydney to live in melbourne.

    the npc is within a hairs breadth of going under as it is something of a financial disaster. unfortunately fox has no interest in paying the rights for a national comp.

    the currie cup and the npc are tied in with the deals and so those countries get a bigger peice of the sanzar pie.

    as the player drain continues overseas players could play in japan or the uk for A150,000 or $A10,000 in an arc.

    the australian rugby shield is a 5 round competition that has been successfull in developing club players but has been of great expense to the aru and so has also been scrapped.

    the crowds in the arc last avaraged about 2,500 and was kept up by the excellent support of the west australian community.

    in general australia is trying to keep a tiny population supporting 4 different footballs.

    i have a few options

    a)keep expanding the super 14 , slowly.

    b) start an arc again and take a hit to the tune of $4-5 million a year and hope for the best.

    c) ban rugby league and afl and have all their resources pushed into a rugby comp.

    i like the last one.

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    Veteran beige's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenyaQuin View Post
    As Gigs or somebody suggested previously, me for the idea of having an expanded S14 that would involve the Australian sides playing each other on a home-away basis.

    Moving on with that, having as a curtain raiser for each of these matches, a sort of Australian A-team/developmental/academy game. If Melbourne is not part of the expansion, then a provision be made for them to be included in this developmental league.
    That would be koff koff John O'Neill koff koff that came up with that idea And yeah, that's also my favourite... and probably the most likely to happen too...

    I do like the idea of a shadow competition as curtain raisers.

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    Veteran mudskipper's Avatar
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    And what a difference the ARC made in just one year... imagine if was was a regular fixture. If the S14 goes adapts to the conference model S14 will be around 23 weeks... depending on the finals series... we could even have a wield card weekend like the NFL... to mix it up a little...

    Australian rugby is just silo-ing talent which hardly ever takes the field. its doesn't make them better players...

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    Veteran TOCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudskipper View Post
    And what a difference the ARC made in just one year... imagine if was was a regular fixture. If the S14 goes adapts to the conference model S14 will be around 23 weeks... depending on the finals series... we could even have a wield card weekend like the NFL... to mix it up a little...

    Australian rugby is just silo-ing talent which hardly ever takes the field. its doesn't make them better players...
    what difference did it make?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOCC View Post
    what difference did it make?
    exciting rugby.

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    highlighted a number of fringe players that would not have previously had the opportunity to show their skills.

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    And thereafter drift quietly back into the fringes?

    Just who was "discovered" by the ARC?

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    weren't a few of the Paly boys in the ARC side........just as the finals started here in the local comp?

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    Veteran mudskipper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TOCC View Post
    what difference did it make?
    Plenty of young talent got a chance to develop at a professional level which paid off in the following S14... Other young players who were silo-ed at S14 provinces got to have a run week in week out which brought them on earlier... Quade Cooper, James Horwill, Ben Hand, Burgess, Lealiifano, Josh Holmes, Kimliln, Ben Alexander, Kurtley Beale, Alfi Malfi...just to name a few…

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    as great as the ARC was to watch, it didnt exactly discover any new players who wouldnt have come through the ranks anyway. The one benefit it did give was giving players a semi-professional avenue towards the Super14.

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    Veteran mudskipper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TOCC View Post
    as great as the ARC was to watch, it didnt exactly discover any new players who wouldnt have come through the ranks anyway. The one benefit it did give was giving players a semi-professional avenue towards the Super14.
    It gave them game time and game time at this level in Australia is infrequent... It was a big step up from local club matches...

    Players will thrive earlier if they can develop with game time against quality oppositions... That’s one big advantage NZ and SA unions have on us in OZ…

    You don’t get it training, in the gym or watching countless game tapes or having the best coach in town; only through encountering an opposition on the field and making decisions and testing your skills…

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    Quote Originally Posted by mudskipper View Post
    It gave them game time and game time at this level in Australia is infrequent... It was a big step up from local club matches...

    Players will thrive earlier if they can develop with game time against quality oppositions... That’s one big advantage NZ and SA unions have on us in OZ…

    You don’t get it training, in the gym or watching countless game tapes or having the best coach in town; only through encountering an opposition on the field and making decisions and testing your skills…
    which isnt really a whole lot in essence...

    Me personally, I like the concept of a national competition....

    but, it was created in such a bad way, i mean the teams in Perth, Melbourne and Canberra might have worked because the lesser level of club rugby there.

    But in Brisbane and Sydney, the ARC was a artificial level of rugby was inserted in between two levels of traditional rugby. It was a slap in the face towards clubs who have worked quite hard to improve themselves, only to be consigned to drop down a tier. Now i know some of the Sydney clubs played a large part in the downfall of the ARC, but if the ARC was created properly then they wouldnt have needed that.

    Yes i was dissapointed to lose it, but Gary Flowers created it in a way that made it extremely difficult to be succesful financially. Having the ARU losing $5million/year just for the sake of giving players a 2month exposure to semi-professional rugby does not make sense to me.

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