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Thread: Fox Sports is set to walk away from rugby union

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    Tong Master Dry July! 141 Club Award TWF Competition Runner Up! MO-vember Donator TWF Contributor!
    As predicted here over 12 months ago by The InnForcer!

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    Legend Contributor Alison's Avatar
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    Time for Andrew Forrest to step in and change the face of Australian rugby!!

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    Legend Contributor .X.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alison View Post
    Time for Andrew Forrest to step in and change the face of Australian rugby!!
    Isnt he doing that already?

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    Exile
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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    Wow it seems to be common that RA take a mature approach and just don’t talk to people when they don’t get what they want! Seriously WTF

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    Legend Contributor Alison's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by .X. View Post
    Isnt he doing that already?
    Only in WA so far....

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    Legend Contributor .X.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alison View Post
    Only in WA so far....
    Mission accomplished then.

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    Veteran valzc's Avatar
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    So they tried to play hardball with their only supplier with a shit product that’s losing money and no real business plan..Way to go RA. Couldn’t do pissup in a brewery, absolutely useless bunch of idiots.

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    Legend Contributor Alison's Avatar
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    I noted this in the article in the Australian:

    “The first round matches averaged just 33,000 viewers last weekend, down 19 per cent on round one last year and more worryingly, games with Australian teams were down 35 per cent.”

    No business is going to spend millions of dollars buying the rights to Super Rugby when so few people are interested in watching it.

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    Legend Contributor Alison's Avatar
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    This is the text of the piece in The Australian:

    “Fox Sports is set to walk away from rugby union, ending a 25-year broadcasting partnership that began when the game turned professional.

    Months of talks between Fox Sports and Rugby Australia came to a halt on Wednesday, and the struggling code will likely have to make a deal with Optus.

    Sources revealed RA chief executive Raelene Castle and Foxtel boss Patrick Delany have not spoken face to face in weeks, although emails had been traded.

    The stunning development puts major pressure on rugby, with the game needing an extraordinary new deal to stay afloat.

    The existing television deal, signed in 2015 and running through to the end of this year, was worth a total $285 million, giving RA $57 million a year.

    However, that deal was bolstered by investment from Britain’s Sky Sport, who added millions to show southern hemisphere rugby. Sky has now pulled back on their level of interest.

    Fox Sports and Network Ten are the domestic broadcasters, with Fox showing all Super Rugby games and both screening Wallabies Test matches. With Fox out of the equation, the most likely outcome is for RA to sign a deal with Ten and Optus, who would show Super Rugby on subscription as they do the English Premier

    Fox Sports is owned by News Corp, publishers of The Australian. With News Corp’s backing in 1996, rugby went professional and Fox Sports broadcast the first season of Super Rugby, and the partnership with the game has continued unabated until now.

    Signs of unrest emerged last year when RA failed to finalise their television deal for 2021-25, despite partner nations New Zealand and South Africa signing theirs.

    In attempting to gain more money for rugby, Castle refused Fox’s initial offer, which is when Optus emerged as a candidate. Problems were clear when just before the season kicked off last week, Fox released highly respected rugby commentator Nick McArdle and former Wallaby Drew Mitchell from their roster, and cut their weekly rugby show.

    The first round matches averaged just 33,000 viewers last weekend, down 19 per cent on round one last year and more worryingly, games with Australian teams were down 35 per cent.

    In their attempt to pitch a multi-layered package, RA has blocked Fox Sports’ offer to broadcast the Shute Shield and Queensland Premier Rugby this year. The Sydney club competition, owned by Club Rugby TV, is broadcast by Channel Seven, who are paid by Sydney Rugby Union to show the match of the round each Saturday.

    Fox Sports offered to pick up the $300,000 annual fee to show Shute Shield matches and Queensland club rugby games, with Seven — who have the rights until the end of 2024 — agreeing to the proposal.

    But RA want club rugby as part of their entire package and blocked the move, presumably so if they could not make a deal with Fox Sports, they could sell it to Ten and Optus.

    Club Rugby TV can either sell to Fox Sports or RA, at which point Castle can take RA’s broadcast package to the open market.

    An RA spokesman said the package would go to the market within a fortnight.

    “Rugby Australia’s preparations for the next five-year rights period have led to a key focus on creating alignment across the rugby competitions in Australia,” he said.

    “Our strategy is to provide an integrated whole of rugby presentation to our fans and, importantly, we are confident that there is real interest from the market in this content. We are preparing to take the package to market early this month.”

    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/spo...5487fb5b0b6a72

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    It really seems like Karma for this lot but I hope it’s not at the expense of the sport we love 😳

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    Legend Contributor Alison's Avatar
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    I think the RA AGM is being held on 30 March. Should be an interesting meeting.

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    Immortal Contributor The InnFORCEr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by travelling_gerry View Post
    As predicted here over 12 months ago by The InnForcer!
    Best everyone starts buying Perth real estate right now too, market is about to BOOM, you have been warned.

    If you need any help buying, or even selling for that matter, I know one that can help

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    Last edited by The InnFORCEr; 05-02-20 at 21:42.
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    Champion SPaRTAN's Avatar
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    This is going to cripple Foxtel and Kayo too. I would imagine a fairly large chunk of their users have signed up specifically for Rugby, I can guarantee if there is no rugby next year I am dropping Kayo like a hot potato. Many others will too I presume.

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