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Rugby League World - April 2014
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Expansion... Wait for it... Sth Africa


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#1 statties

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 03:28 AM

So my previous thoughts on changing the Challenge Cup for the better (http://www.totalrl.c...p/?fromsearch=1 IMO) went without much discussion, this may well be a solo post.

SA have applied for the 2017 WC and good on them. We all doubt this will come to fruition but as Penrith have signed a one match per year deal with Tas over three seasons, and everyone talking about Perth, Central Coast, Brisbane/Ipswich and NZ, my thoughts are a little left field. South Africa.

There is so much I can say. I will reserve this for the moment in interest of opinions from others for an NRL game in SA over the next three years or even more left field, an NRL team by 2017

#2 eal

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 04:19 AM

I could see an NRL game being successful. They are a long way from an NRL team however.



#3 statties

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:19 AM

I could see an NRL game being successful. They are a long way from an NRL team however.


With the financial resources of the NRL and the lessons learned from Catalans Dragons and Melbourne Rebels (let alone Melbourne Storm and Sydney Swans) I disagree. But that's just my two cents

#4 Jack GB

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:21 AM

Maybe even the World Club challenge would be a go-er in 2015? Announce it early ie a year in advance and work with the consortium who are bidding for the world cup to promote and sell it?



#5 statties

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:30 AM

One of many opportunities J GB

#6 Jack GB

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:47 AM

There must be a huge potential there though. They love there RU admittedly but there are definitely players more suited and who may prefer RL. I remember a while ago an NRL club having some links to a few players in South Africa - maybe the Roosters? Nothing really seems to have come of it however.



#7 walter sobchak

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:53 AM

So my previous thoughts on changing the Challenge Cup for the better (http://www.totalrl.c...p/?fromsearch=1 IMO) went without much discussion, this may well be a solo post.
SA have applied for the 2017 WC and good on them. We all doubt this will come to fruition but as Penrith have signed a one match per year deal with Tas over three seasons, and everyone talking about Perth, Central Coast, Brisbane/Ipswich and NZ, my thoughts are a little left field. South Africa.
There is so much I can say. I will reserve this for the moment in interest of opinions from others for an NRL game in SA over the next three years or even more left field, an NRL team by 2017

I've been banging on about this for years as well, if it was ever going to happen it would have to be a gradual process with maybe NRL games being shown on SA tv first then trial matches and then a full blown NRL game held in cape town, joburg or Durban. NRL clubs could also sign a few junior springbok players for their u20's sides and see how they go and even create headlines in the SA media.
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#8 walter sobchak

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:57 AM

There must be a huge potential there though. They love there RU admittedly but there are definitely players more suited and who may prefer RL. I remember a while ago an NRL club having some links to a few players in South Africa - maybe the Roosters? Nothing really seems to have come of it however.


Yeah it was the roosters but like as you say nothing seems to have come of it but it's another potential market for the NRL clubs just like NZ, Fiji, png etc.

#9 Exiled Wiganer

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 07:42 AM

I think the way to go would be to encourage clubs to sign sufficient numbers of union players to get a decent national side together, and grow the grass roots in parallel. I just can't see the union people welcoming/tolerating our game at all though. They're all still Africaans aren't they? As unreconstructed as they come.

#10 Northern Sol

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 08:39 AM

South Africa is too far from Australia to have an NRL side.

 

I know that Australia and New Zealand play Saffer sides in Super Rugby but the difference is that the competition has lots of Saffer sides. Every time an Aussie side goes over there, they can play several games before coming back to Aus, Saffer sides have to go to Aus but not for every away game.



#11 scrape_goose

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 08:50 AM

The World Club gmae is a top idea. And a winner for us here in UK as no time difference.

 

Re Africaans, when in Holland we had an Africaans RU player who tried his hand at RL, he was also a coach of the RU side, that we go tto play a club game against Essex Eels, Te Werve. He was a typical Africaans, or so he seemed. He didn't like RL, but he'd also never really watched it. He came training and started showing interest. We had them all out one Friday night to watch a Super League game, think it was Leeds and Bradford, he loved it, could not get enough of RL after that. Enjoyed playing and used to come regular to watch the game sin the local ex pat bar.



#12 Futtocks

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 09:47 AM

Yeah it was the roosters but like as you say nothing seems to have come of it but it's another potential market for the NRL clubs just like NZ, Fiji, png etc.

The Roosters did sign someone (can't remember his name) but I think he returned to RU quite quickly.

 

SA seems to be running a domestic competition, but it seems to be pretty low-key. They have the ongoing problem with getting official recognition to deal with too. Oddly, the problem doesn't appear to originate with the SARFU in this case. 

 

An exhibition match or an on-the-road NRL game would be a way of testing the waters.

 

SA is predominantly a Football nation, though.


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#13 EastLondonMike

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 10:13 AM

Always been an advocate of a big push with SA, not sure why its never really happened. As has been mentioned they do seem the perfect target for RL expansion, certainly in terms of the amount of people they have that play rugby. SA rugby union is traditionally quite aggressive in comparison with most other nations and think RL would suit that attitude towards playing rugby.

Can remember quite a few SA players switching codes back at the start of the SL war, but not many stuck around, and the few that did didn't really make much impact. The Roosters signed a couple of kids from SA schools a few years back, but don't think any of them had ever played a game of RL before going to Australia and quite quickly came back.

Think the biggest two names that switched back then were Pieter Muller, who played centre for the Spingnboks, who went to Penrith for a couple of seasons, but only made a handful of appearances off the bench, and also Tian Strauss who won a reserve grade grand final with the Bulldogs and played a dozen or some first grade games in his couple of years there. There were some lesser known players who made a better fist of things, can remember a winger at the Bulldogs, Kevin Schraader i think, who managed to hold down a first grade spot for a season or two.

Japie Mulder joined Leeds some years back also, in an apparent cross code deal with both Leeds clubs, but don't think he ever actually played for the Rhinos.

 

Definite potential over there. What with the recent actions towards RL over there it would be a pretty tough job i think.


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#14 Joe Whitley

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 10:20 AM

How can a country so proud of its rugby union not be more prominent in RL? Makes no sense to me. Would love to see them become a real force and challenge Eng, Aus and NZ.


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#15 foozler

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 10:21 AM

I would have thought it logistically impossible to have a single NRL side based in SA, but not beyond the realms of the feasible to attract enough SA rugby talent to play in the NRL. Put enough cash on the table and you might start to get somewhere, but it will be a very long term development project. Maybe having a regular NFL style NRL combine in SA might be helpful to generate interest and identify talent? 

 

I would have thought a more worthy ex-Australia NRL expansion project is a second NZ team based in the South Island, thereby giving a NZ Origin series plus another pro RL home for many of the young Kiwis who currently move to Australia to play in the Toyota Cup.



#16 Viking Warrior

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 10:26 AM

let's not forget the south africans who have graced the english game over the years, george van rooyen, laurie gilfedder, len killeen and tom van vollenhoven are just four who immediately spring to mind..


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#17 XIII

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 10:36 AM

Whilst my view is this is very much Pie in the Sky as much as I would love to see it happen, the flight time between Cape town and Sydney is 14 hours and 15 mins, the flight time between Cape Town and Manchester is 12 hours and 45 mins. With the same time zone as well, surely an SA side would make more sense in Super League....



#18 ben25

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 10:37 AM


SA should be a goldmine for RL. They are rugby crazy yet only a small percentage will ever make it in union.

The Roosters went over there and saw so much potentional and signed two players who both did play in lower grades for the Roosters, yet there defense was terrible and they both went back to union. They need to learn the game at a younger age so the NRL and RFL should be doing more development work over there.

#19 Aucks Warriors

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 12:08 PM

SA should be a goldmine for RL. They are rugby crazy yet only a small percentage will ever make it in union.

The Roosters went over there and saw so much potentional and signed two players who both did play in lower grades for the Roosters, yet there defense was terrible and they both went back to union. They need to learn the game at a younger age so the NRL and RFL should be doing more development work over there.

Weren't those two kids on training contracts and one eventually went back to SA before playing any games and the other stayed in Australia and try his hand in union?



#20 The Future is League

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 12:16 PM

Maybe even the World Club challenge would be a go-er in 2015? Announce it early ie a year in advance and work with the consortium who are bidding for the world cup to promote and sell it?

I agree that the WCC would be a good idea to test the interest of Rugby League in South Africa. Perhaps have it there for 3 years. I in all hinesty expect the 2017 world cup to be held in Australia and NZ, but come 2021 who knows.






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