For me, the single biggest tragedy in Rugby League is the fact that we no longer have tours to Australia. Unfortunately, I'm not old enough to have seen any of them, but when you look at the attention and media coverage that the Lions, and from all four countries at that has generated, just think of the benefits that they would have on Rugby League in general.
Just to be clear, none.
Compared to a rugby union Lions tour, the hype and national interest a rugby league Lions tour would generate would be to the same extent that our world cups generate in comparison their ones.
The rugby union Lions only tour Australia every 12 years, the hype is in part because of is scarcity. It is also because it is in effect an all-star team, drawing on the four nations of the British Isles to form a team at a level higher than the normal world cup, Six Nations, and autumn international ones.
If we toured that infrequently it would offer nothing we could build on, while our team would be just the England team with maybe one or two others. What makes the rugby union Lions of interest just do not apply to us. We practically play Australia every year, a test series could add an extra dimension but it will not even approach the level of media coverage the Six Nations receives.
The Six Nations annually records television audiences of up to 7.5m for England matches. The hype the rugby union Lions are getting is not simply because it is a "proper tour" with midweek matches against club sides. It is because, no matter what we may think of the it, the sport has a very popular international game and the interest in the Lions builds on from that. A rugby league Lions would be starting from a much smaller level that even a commensurate increase for us would still leave us struggling in the media.
I am not saying a rugby league England or GB tour of Australia would be a bad thing, it just would not the panacea it is being made out to be.