We had P&R for years, It was disastrous
We have had licensing for a handful of years
It has improved the competition for the better
It has improved the player pool immeasurably
It's improved the marketability of the game and allowed its expansion beyond the m62
It has succeeded on every level that P&R had failed on.
I really agree with this post but IMHO you have missed the rest of the story out.
Under both the principles of licensing Leeds & Wigan followed before it came along, and Hull and Warrington met when it did come along and Catalans and Saints have met under licensing, it certainly has "worked" and it has improved matters.
Under licensing now Bradford have a new business minded board, and Wakefield have a possible new stadium so I'd hope it will work for them. Also Salford have the money and the owner has the drive to meet the licensing terms on all counts.
But you can see the problem. After what?? Seven years of licensing we have a six club Superleague.
Sure there's three clubs who remain "work in progress" after seven years but we've hit a point where we are looking at the next round of licenses and as it stands we can't fill 10 spots let alone 12 or 14.
OK you may say persevere with licensing as clubs will get there??? Not on the evidence I see?
London - can't get anywhere under licensing and even with RFL help are going backwards
Cas - No ground and the owner has given up and will allow team to disintegrate
HKR - owner also given up and will allow team to disintegrate
Widnes - Chairman steps down from the board and invites others to invest
Huddersfield - crowds gone nowhere in over six year a point made by the chairman!!!
One can only hope Featherstone and Halifax are up to filling the spots, but will they grow to be "A" grade licencees? Or just be propped up in the same way Cas, London, Widnes, Fartown and HKR are???
Maybe Toulouse can shore things up.
But whilst licensing has improved several clubs and is pushing a couple more to get there there are not enough resources for the others to have any hope of making the standards licensing sets, and so you see them talking "glass ceilings" and giving up.
Let's hope we aren't going to continue the debate on Licensing.v.P & R because IMHO neither works.