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Jersey Numbers

And Ray French

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#1 Griff

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:26 AM

"I can't resist the opportunity to mention the fact that the many fans, regular or new, watching the World Cup matches over the next five weeks will note that the numbers on the back of all the jerseys will initially be numbered 1 to 13.

 

"Yes, the traditional numbering system for rugby league, the numbering system used by the biggest league in the world, the NRL, and by international teams.

 

"Easy for recognition of players and easy for recognition of positional play.

 

Ray French, League Weekly, 28 October 2013.

 

Well, I take issue with Ray, there.  Nice for him to be sitting in the commentary box, sussling tea, whilst perusing his team sheet which some kind soul has typed out after gleaning all the details from the dressing room doors.

 

We lesser mortals have to listen to tannoy announcements, jotting down notes whilst some latecomer squeezes past, teeming his ale over us.

 

Up till now, I haven't had much of a preference between squad and traditional numbers.  Either was fine.  But there are so many unfamiliar names and unfamiliar faces at the World Cup that I now definitely prefer squad numbers.  I'm more interested in who the bloke at number seven is, rather than what position he's playing - but maybe that's just me.  I can work out what position he's playing by watching the game.  I'm surprised that Ray needs that numbering system but he seems to.

 

Finally, from Ray again .....

 

I can hear the words now from a player when asked by his grandchild at some time in the future, "And what number were you, granddad?"

 

"Oh, I was no.32 when I played at Leeds, then I was No.26 when I joined Bradford, and then I was No.19 at Huddersfield."

 

Enough said.

 

Enough, indeed.  Because, of course, Ray, you always wore the same number, didn't you ?

 

Oh - and anyone remember what numbers touring teams used to wear ?  Chuck Hardisty at 11 ?


Edited by Griff, 01 November 2013 - 09:28 AM.

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#2 Wolford6

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:35 AM

I'm with you Griff. Individual numbers for individual players. Many of them switch positions during a game anyway.

 

You can argue who was the best prop the Bulls have had, but Stuart Fielden was definitely our best Number 29.

;)


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#3 brooza

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:37 AM

I much prefer squad numbers. It's easier to remember who is who across the season than having to remember new ones every game.


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#4 Griff

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:37 AM

 

You can argue who was the best prop the Bulls have had, but Stuart Fielden was definitely our best Number 29.

;)

 

:laugh:


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#5 Griff

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:50 AM

I much prefer squad numbers. It's easier to remember who is who across the season than having to remember new ones every game.

 

The biggest issue for me is communication.  Even if you've got a pen and paper handy, it's hard to jot down all those unfamiliar, mispronounced names when they're read out at a brisk pace.  Even watching it at home on TV.


Edited by Griff, 01 November 2013 - 09:52 AM.

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#6 Six to Go

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:51 AM

i'm with Frenchy on this one. As a marketing tool in football it definitely sells jerseys in volume but in League?

 

It always intrigued me about the domestic numbering in Australia with props numbered 11 and 13(iirc?) and when they went to international numbering , ie our domestic numbering ,it gave us a chance to immediately contrast and compare players.

 

Anybody not aware of the sport would struggle to see any semblence of team shape with squad numbering and when teams form defensive scrums with the backs going into the pack it makes it look to the unititated a jack of all trades sport where it is in fact very specialized.



#7 flyingking

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:02 AM

The shirt numbers is not as important to me as having the player's name written on the back.
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#8 Wolford6

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:19 AM

The shirt numbers is not as important to me as having the player's name written on the back.

 

Not with my eyesight.

 

Though, I can usually spot when  Leeds players are offside ... obviously for a full forty minutes. Their other forty minutes are spent giving forward passes and being dirty.

;)


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#9 marklaspalmas

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:30 AM

Perhaps it's been done for fans unfamiliar with RL, and so position numbers would be easier for them to follow?
 

Just a thought.


 

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#10 Padge

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:37 AM

Squad numbers are a marketing tool.



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#11 l'angelo mysterioso

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:38 AM

Perhaps it's been done for fans unfamiliar with RL, and so position numbers would be easier for them to follow?
 

Just a thought.

but positions aren't rigid

half back/hooker/loose forward /stand off are interchangeable, almost anyone can and does join a scrum as and when needed.

IMHO all what matters is that you can read the numbers clearly so that identifying the players is easy.

 

Rugby League is a complex game, but it isn't arcane and it is fluid. Putting a player in a pigeon hole doesn't, I feel help newcomers to the game at all.


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#12 l'angelo mysterioso

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:39 AM

Squad numbers are a marketing tool.

certainly a better marketing tool than the outdated positional numbers.


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#13 Errol Stock

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:46 AM

Ray French has carped on about this since 1996 at every opportunity. Does my chuffin head in he does..

 

Never rated him as a commentator and never will - decades of perfectly presenting the game just how the BBC wanted it..

 

Low point being - partnered with Alex Murphy and the "likkle chip over the top" - dear god...

 

Wish he would disappear up his own ######.



#14 Griff

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:53 AM

Squad numbers are a marketing tool.

 

Are they ?  Do you know anyone who buys more than one jersey ?


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#15 marklaspalmas

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:55 AM

but positions aren't rigid

half back/hooker/loose forward /stand off are interchangeable, almost anyone can and does join a scrum as and when needed.

IMHO all what matters is that you can read the numbers clearly so that identifying the players is easy.

 

Rugby League is a complex game, but it isn't arcane and it is fluid. Putting a player in a pigeon hole doesn't, I feel help newcomers to the game at all.

 

Yeah. It was just a thought. I think there is a difference between a year long domestic comp. and a one-off international tourney. Would the organisers/media have been able to promote 336 players from 14 countries by their squad number? Perhaps.

 

The name on the back helps.


 

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#16 Griff

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:56 AM

Perhaps it's been done for fans unfamiliar with RL, and so position numbers would be easier for them to follow?
 

 

If I'm unfamiliar with a game, do I care about the technicalities or do I just want to watch the spectacle ?

 

If I'm watching Aussie Rules, do  I need to know what a rover does ?  Fetches sticks ?  Chews bones ?


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#17 marklaspalmas

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:08 AM

If I'm unfamiliar with a game, do I care about the technicalities or do I just want to watch the spectacle ?

 

If I'm watching Aussie Rules, do  I need to know what a rover does ?  Fetches sticks ?  Chews bones ?

 

You've lost me. Your point is RL positions are irrelevant? Uninteresting for the casual viewer?


 

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#18 l'angelo mysterioso

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:08 AM

Yeah. It was just a thought. I think there is a difference between a year long domestic comp. and a one-off international tourney. Would the organisers/media have been able to promote 336 players from 14 countries by their squad number? Perhaps.

 

The name on the back helps.

dunno mate

perhaps ptomoting people by their numbers in this tournament

Sam Tomkins is Sam Tomkin and that's how an increasingly large number of people know hims, the Burgess  Brothers come as a package, Billy Slater will undoubtedly show himself to be the superstar he is as the tournament progresses and so in. Theirs and all  the other players who will no doubt for one reason or another rise to promience will do so by theior actions and their personalities: their shirt numbers are irrelevant


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#19 l'angelo mysterioso

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:10 AM

You've lost me. Your point is RL positions are irrelevant? Uninteresting for the casual viewer?

I agree with Griff

what will be memorable tothe  new, and or casual viewer will be the acts of skill, bravery and derring do of groupss or individuals.


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#20 marklaspalmas

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:14 AM

I agree with Griff

what will be memorable tothe  new, and or casual viewer will be the acts of skill, bravery and derring do of groupss or individuals.

 

Yes yes of course. The thread was about 1 to 13 or squad numbers though.

 

Perhaps squad numbers could've been marketed. Dunno.


 

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