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Thread: Rugby Workshop agrees to a new eight-team National Rugby Competition

  1. #1
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    Rugby Workshop agrees to a new eight-team National Rugby Competition

    Rugby Workshop agrees to a new eight-team National Rugby Competition

    Wednesday, May 31, 2006
    ARU

    A 70-man Rugby Workshop, involving Australia's Rugby leaders, has agreed on a new, eight-team National Rugby Competition starting in 2007, with the prime objectives of improving the Wallabies, the four Australian Super 14 teams and importantly, providing more opportunities for club Rugby players to take the next step up the representative ladder.

    The National Competition will involve three teams from NSW, two from QLD and one team each from ACT, Victoria and Western Australia.

    The National Competition will run from 28 July until 14 October. This playing window has been agreed based on the following:

    * It minimises the impact on Club Rugby
    * The current Club Rugby seasons will no longer be broken into two separate competitions (as is currently the case). Club Rugby will run from March until July.
    * It will begin after the completion of the Tooheys New Super 14 and the Australia A program
    * It has been scheduled to ensure the availability of Australian Under 19 and Under 21 players

    The top four teams will play in two semi finals to decide the finalists, with each team playing 10-12 top-quality, highly competitive matches.

    The NSW and QLD Rugby Unions will work with the existing clubs to determine the teams in their states.

    These two State Unions will also work with the clubs to nominate them as feeder clubs into the National Competition teams, providing two-way benefits for both the clubs and the National Competition teams.

    The clubs, with Member Unions, will be involved in providing coaching and team management personnel, providing these people with a similar pathway to higher representation that is offered to the players.

    The Victorian team will include a number of contracted players from the Super 14 teams, including Academy players.

    Each National Competition team will have 28 players, a total of 224 players across the eight teams.

    Current ARU/Super 14 contracted players- 132

    Players unavailable due to Wallaby commitments- Up to 30

    Contracted players (non-Wallabies) available for National Competition- 90 (allowing for 10 players unavailable due to injury)

    Academy players available for National Competition- 60

    Number of positions available for Club Rugby players to step up into a higher quality competition- Approx 75

    The Workshop felt that this is an economically sustainable and commercially attractive competition that will attract sponsors, broadcasters and Rugby fans.

    While there is significant additional detail yet to be announced, much of this detail has been fully discussed, analysed and committed to within the workshop, including:

    * Infrastructure
    * Commercial & financial model
    * Collaborative investment
    * Contracting and player movement
    * Player development
    * Maintaining club Rugby
    * Additional detail of competition structure
    * Vision and governance
    * Implementation plan
    * Integration model

    All participants agreed at the beginning, and again at the end of the workshop, that they are fully committed to the outcome of the workshop.

    The Workshop agreed that the three-day consultation process had been inclusive of all the major stakeholder groups and had gone through an exhaustive, and extremely cooperative and constructive process to achieve its goals.

    Rugby Workshop - stakeholder group

    Andrew Fagan -ACTRU Board

    Ray McNichol- ACTRU management

    David Usasz- ARU Board

    Gary Flowers- ARU Board

    Peter McGrath- ARU Board

    Ashley Selwood- ARU Management

    Basil Scaffidi- ARU Management

    Ben Whitaker- ARU Management

    Jill Davies- ARU Management

    Pat Wilson- ARU Management

    Rob Clarke- ARU Management

    Wayne Goldsmith- ARU Management

    Richard McKeon- Brothers

    Laurie Fisher- Brumbies coach

    Al Campbell- Contracted players

    John Roe- Contracted players

    John Welborn- Contracted players

    Sean Hardman- Contracted players

    Tim Donnelly- Contracted players

    David Oliver- Eastern Suburbs

    Scott Bowen- Eastern Suburbs - Coach

    Michael Weibler- Easts (QLD)

    Bob Shield- Eastwood President

    Tim Rowlands- old Coast

    Brad Royall- Gordon

    Rod Macqueen- Independent

    Steve Surridge- Independent

    Peter Garbutt- GPS (Qld)

    Frank Ellis- Manly

    Dan McConaghy- Non-contracted player

    Pauliasi Taumoepeau- Non-contracted player

    Ivor Davies- North QUT

    John Harkness- Northern Suburbs

    Peter Veenstra- NSW Country

    Ewen McKenzie- NSW Waratahs Coach

    Arvid Petersen- NSWRU Board

    Fraser Neill- NSWRU Board

    Ian Ross- NSWRU Board

    Tony D'Arcy- NSWRU Management

    Garry Hudson- arramatta

    Gary Ella- Parramatta Coach

    John O'Brien- Penrith

    Dick Marks- Qld Country

    David Clark- Qld Premier Coaches

    Mark McBain- Qld Premier Coaches

    Eddie Jones- QLD Reds Coach

    Andrew Cole- QRU & Aust Referee

    Robin Thomson- QRU Board

    Ross Williams- QRU Board

    Theo Psaros- QRU Board

    Alex Pope- QRU Management

    Kevin Phibbs- Randwick

    Geoff Stooke- RugbyWA Board

    Peter O'Meara- RugbyWA CEO

    Tony Dempsey- RUPA

    Rob Nelson- SARU

    Kevin Maloney- Southern Districts

    Peter Rodgers- Souths

    Neil Fawcett- Sunnybank

    Russell Sheil- Sunshine Coast

    Andrew Wennerbom- Sydney University

    Nick Stiles- University

    Dave Paull- Vikings

    Ron Steiner- VRU

    John Heffernan- Warringah

    Matt Williams- West Harbour

    John Mitchell- Western Force coach

    Joe Nowak- Wests

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    Last edited by Burgs; 31-05-06 at 17:48.
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  2. #2
    Champion Contributor no.8's Avatar
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    I think it was good that all we're consulted and a positive outlook was formed.

    Wait....we're all consulted?
    I didn't see Norman Simon Wattle - WARATAHS FAN, Alan Carl Tinkle - BRUMBIES FAN, Quentin Lesley Dunstan - MEMBER OF THE REDS ARMY and Wally Allen - A FOLLOWER OF THE FORCE.

    Who represented the people who buy the season passes, the game tickets, the programs and the club jerseys. The people who spend the money we're no invited to be represented.

    Having said all that I think they got lucky!

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  3. #3
    Legend Contributor fulvio sammut's Avatar
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    How and when did Stooke and O 'Meara get approval from the local clubs to agree to this on their behalf? When was this ever put to the W.A. clubs?
    It may be a good idea or it may not.That's not the point. Don't you think their employers have a right to have a say?This is another case of the tail wagging the dog;unfortunately it's a mighty big tail and an exceedingly small dog, too busy biting it's fleas to guard it's home. All I can say is R.I.P.to to club rugby as we know it, and welcome to Big Brother.

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  4. #4
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    Three places for NSW in national comp

    Ben Kimber, Greg Growden and AAP
    Thursday, June 1, 2006

    NSW will field three teams in a new national tournament that may threaten the future of the Sydney club competition.

    A three-day summit on the future of Australian rugby ended yesterday with the game's power-brokers declaring it a success after it endorsed the third-tier, eight-team competition for next year.

    NSW will field three sides, Queensland two, and there will be one each from Canberra, Perth and Victoria. Each squad will have 28 players.

    The composition of the three NSW sides is now in the hands of the NSWRU, but its chief executive, Fraser Neill, last night virtually ruled out a Sydney club standing alone in the new competition, as Randwick and Sydney University have sought to do.

    "I don't see how you could have a club stand alone when only three are allocated," Neill said.

    David Mortimer, president of the Sydney University club, said the funds would have been better spent on grassroots rugby. "The program as proposed will surely result in a significant loss and that's money that would be better spent on the grassroots," Mortimer said. "The fix was in. It was exactly as foreshadowed, and if they think they won't be held accountable for their decision they've got another thing coming.

    "This is a serious blow for those clubs that don't have the horsepower to regroup and fight the battle, but I'd be surprised if some of the bigger clubs weren't ready to take it to the next level."

    The third tier will push Sydney's clubs back into amateur status, becoming feeder clubs for the new entities. It could have a serious impact on the viability of the Tooheys New Cup.

    The NSW Rugby Union had forgone the opportunity to have a fourth team to ensure the inclusion of Victoria.

    The competition will cost $2.5 million to administer next year and is expected to run at a loss in its inaugural season - as a consequence it is believed the ARU will withdraw funding from current club competitions.

    The ABC has expressed interest in telecasting all matches in the new competition.

    The competition will run from July 28 until October 14. This playing window is based on:

     The club season will no longer be broken into two competitions. Club rugby will run from March to July;

     It will begin after the Super 14 and the Australia A program;

     It will ensure the availability of Australian under-19 and under-21 players;

     Each team will play 10 to 12 matches, with the top four teams contesting the finals.

    ARU boss Gary Flowers said he was thrilled Australian rugby would have a third-tier competition like New Zealand and South Africa. "It's been something that Australian rugby has been looking at for well over a decade," he said.

    "The biggest issue has always been getting an agreement from all our broad stakeholders, and I think it's great we've got an agreement. It's the next big thing in Australian rugby."

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  5. #5
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    Research supports move to National Competition

    Research supports move to National Competition

    June 01, 2006 - 4:06pm
    Story by: ARU

    Prior to this week's three-day Rugby Workshop on a National Competition, the ARU and State Unions conducted extensive quantitative research to gain a full understanding of the opinions and preferences of:

    * Contracted players
    * Non-contracted players
    * Premier Club administrators
    * Rugby fans

    Below is a snapshot of some of the key findings.

    CONTRACTED PLAYERS SURVEY

    Sample = 114 contracted players

    * 77% of contracted players believe Premier Rugby players need more experience at a higher level before they can play Super 14 rugby
    * 73% of contracted players believe Premier Rugby players do not have adequate physical and skill levels to play Super 14 rugby
    * 88% of contracted players believe an extra level of competition is needed between Super 14 and Premier Rugby

    NON-CONTRACTED PLAYERS SURVEY

    Sample = 130 non-contracted players:

    * The motivations of the players to player Premier Rugby are:
    o As a step in their development to professional level (46%)
    o For pleasure/enjoyment (26%)
    o Personal aspirations to play to best of ability, but not professionally (21%)
    * 80% of players believe that rugby needs a level between Super 14 & Club
    * 70% of Premier Rugby players are extremely interested in playing in a new tier of competition; another 21% are interested

    PREMIER CLUB ADMINISTRATORS SURVEY

    Sample = 16 administrators responded

    * 91% of Sydney Club administrators believe Rugby would benefit from a larger pool of more experienced players
    * 50% agree that we need an extra level of competition between Super 14 & Premier (the another 40% are neutral on this point )
    * 73% of NSW Club administrators believe the NPC provides a higher level of competition than Premier Rugby, and 54% believe this for the Currie Cup

    FANS

    Sample = 331 respondents

    89% of fans surveyed believe the Wallabies and S14 teams will benefit from a larger pool of players with more experience at a higher level

    63% of fans surveyed believe an extra level of competition is needed between Super 14 and Premier Rugby

    69% believe the NPC provides a higher level of competition for players than Premier Rugby in Australia, and 50% believe the Currie Cup is similarly stronger

    66% of fans think that a third tier of competition should be introduced in Australia

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  6. #6
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    More Rugby to go to.

    Makes my day.

    I wonder if we will get the highest crowds in this competition?

    This is seperate from the APC - with the Force, Waratahs, Reds and Brumbies B sides?

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  7. #7
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    This will supercede this years APC Egan however, how I can see it, the Force Gold side will be pretty much the same in next years' competition with the inclusion of any Under 21's who don't go on to make the '07 Wallaby/Australia "A" Squad.
    There is also currently some suggestion that Victorian born players already in Super 14 may be encouraged to play for Melbourne.
    For WA that may include Vitori Buatava, David Fitter, Digby Ioane and Brock James.
    Others that it may include are David Palavi and John Ulugia from the Brumbies, Rocky Elsom from the Waratahs and Lloyd Johansson and Tom McVerry from the Reds.
    This will help to balance out the likes of Canberra and Perth who would otherwise be virtual S14 Squads.

    Potential Melbourne APC XV:

    1. John Ulugia,
    2. David Palavi,
    3. David Fitter,
    4. x,
    5. x,
    6. Rocky Elsom,
    7. Tom McVerry,
    8. x,
    9. Vitori Buatava,
    10. Brock James,
    11. Digby Ioane,
    12. x,
    13. Lloyd Johansson,
    14. x,
    15. x

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  8. #8
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    Singo backs 'pub with no beer'

    Singo backs 'pub with no beer'

    By Jon Geddes
    June 2, 2006

    MILLIONAIRE businessman John Singleton is keen to get involved in the new eight-team national rugby competition - with an intention to turn the Central Coast into a rugby powerbase.

    While debate rages in clubland about the new competition, with Randwick fearing it could end up as a sub-district outfit, the entrepreneur ad-man says the Central Coast has the potential to become a rugby heartland - and that the big loser in the end will be rugby league.

    "We have the ground, the money, great support and no rugby league. We are like a pub with no beer. Someone is going to grasp that one day," Singleton said.

    Singleton said it would be a big plus for rugby, and whenever a big match is played at the Central Coast Stadium the corporate areas sell out faster than they do for rugby league games.

    "We would want the best CEO, the best coach and a proper selection criteria," he said.

    A three-day conference decided that three teams would be based in NSW, two in Queensland, and one in the ACT, Victoria and Perth.

    ARU CEO Gary Flowers said while there was a strong commitment for the teams to be rugby owned, the involvement of people like John Singleton in the sides would certainly be encouraged.

    "That is something we think is one of the positive outcomes of this summit," Flowers said.

    In other developments:

    * RANDWICK president Ian North said the decision was very disappointing. "If some of our sponsors pull out we won't be able to survive the way we are now and may end up in community rugby," North warned. (Gee, I was sure they said every Club was represented and it was unanimous?!)

    * A MOVE to make the club competition amateur again - with no match payments - appears unworkable.

    * PLAYERS sign-on fees are likely to be between $7500 and $10,000, with match payments of $750.

    * EACH Sydney club is set to be affiliated with one of the new teams to give players a pathway in pro rugby.

    * GAMES will be played at "premium stadiums."

    * BROADCASTERS have told the ARU if it is a quality competition they would be keen to give it coverage. (ABC said to be the most keen, would be an excellent thing for Australian Rugby if they do get it)

    * NEW teams could be based in the north and in the central-west and south-eastern areas around Sydney.

    The Daily Telegraph

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  9. #9
    Immortal Contributor The InnFORCEr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burgs
    For WA that may include Vitori Buatava, David Fitter, Digby Ioane and Brock James.
    Brock James was actually born in South Australia

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    In this new comp will players who come from Melbourne be encouraged to go home during the competition months? i would really hope so. Melbourne has missed out on the Super 14 team i think they should be able to have the best home-grown talent. No doubt thay will be getting afew unwanted from other states as well as a few semi professionals looking for more opportunity but i really think the Melbourne side needs to be strong and full of talent. Ioane, Johannson, Fitter, Elsom, McVerry and co all need to be in that side. that is what they need to do for Melbourne Rugby to develop like Perth's has. there is interest in Rugby in Melbourne despite what people think, look at the attendance at Wallabies games. I'm really excited about this new comp and I'm going to get right behind the Melbourne side (Im originally from Melb). I'd like to see the stars in that side.
    cheers,
    Felix

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by The InnFORCEr
    Brock James was actually born in South Australia
    Brock James was actually born to Geelong and moved to South Australia as young kid, sorry TIF

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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by felixnelson
    In this new comp will players who come from Melbourne be encouraged to go home during the competition months? i would really hope so. Melbourne has missed out on the Super 14 team i think they should be able to have the best home-grown talent. No doubt thay will be getting afew unwanted from other states as well as a few semi professionals looking for more opportunity but i really think the Melbourne side needs to be strong and full of talent. Ioane, Johannson, Fitter, Elsom, McVerry and co all need to be in that side. that is what they need to do for Melbourne Rugby to develop like Perth's has. there is interest in Rugby in Melbourne despite what people think, look at the attendance at Wallabies games. I'm really excited about this new comp and I'm going to get right behind the Melbourne side (Im originally from Melb). I'd like to see the stars in that side.
    cheers,
    Felix
    Watching Inside Rugby on Thursday night Felix, I got the impression that the Vic "Origin" players were still being encouraged to head to Melbourne for the series. I think it is in the best interest of all parties as it also allows their S14 team to stretch their depth further.
    The best possible outcome is to have all eight teams able to win the comp as it is not so much about who wins (at least in the first few years) but who is "discovered" by getting the opportunity to play amongst tougher opposition.
    This will be the competition where the likes of Kurtley Beale will have to earn their S14 stripes in the future years, rather than going straight from Schoolboys to S14.
    Apparently Melbourne have been contacted by "many" players and coaches who would like to return home for the series so here's hoping mate!
    I'm with you, I think WA was more deserving of being awarded the S14 franchise however, there is a very strong rugby community in Melbourne/Victoria as well. The sooner we can get Victorian Rugby to a higher standard the better for Australian Rugby's depth.
    If you look at the potential team I put together above and add in from the ARS Finalist Melbourne Axemen a few of the better players, Melbourne is certainly in a healthy stage at the moment already considering WA would only have Sheehan and Wallace-Harrison under the same criteria.

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  13. #13
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    The objective of the game is to make Australia, a stronger team.There are going to be a lot of unhappy rugby supporters with their nose out joint,which i fully appreciate.We have to find the middle ground otherwise we will ,never match the Kiwis

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  14. #14
    Champion Contributor tragic's Avatar
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    Match the Kiwis?

    That shows a lack of ambition

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  15. #15
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    Your right, bad word selection.Delete match, insert pummel.

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