This year there's 74 imports from down under. In terms of where the British players come from who are established in the first teams squads and can be counted as senior players now and feature regularly, there's a list below. It's not an exact science, There's a few who come from RU, we have a few French here, a few who started late in life but in terms of the main way players come to our game they tend to be born in an RL area, learn playing for a local junior club, get picked up by a pro club, and are honed into SL professionals. Here's the 2015 numbers and places they started out:
25 from the Wigan area
24 from the "Calder" area Cas, Ponte, Wakey, Fev, Normanton
17 from the Leeds area
15 from the Hull area
14 from the St.Helens area
13 from the "bradhuddersfax" area
8 from the London area
7 from the Oldham area
6 from the Warrington area
5 from Wales
4 from Salford area
4 from west Cumbria
3 from the Dewsbury area
2 from the Widnes area
1 from the Barrow area
There are a few difficulties when clubs are so close to each other picking up where they played amateur. A couple of possible Leigh lads who made it are listed as born in Wigan and is Golborne Wigan or Leigh? and a few Hunslet lads are down as Leeds born so there's no point being "exact" about boundaries as no town is an island with a moat around it. I'm sure if Hunslet were SL top dogs we'd get all the north Leeds lads.
Of course lads home towns may have Amateur clubs but only semi-pro Championship so players may play local then move a short way (sometimes a long way) to an SL club for their career. Braddhuddersfax may be a good example where whoever is top dog, will pick up the best local kids.
The eyebrow raising stats? London's growing contribution that may get knocked back like Wales. The strength of Oldham JARL despite the senior clubs massive fall from grace. How far Widnes have fallen as a town that raises quality RL players, nothing from south yorkshire after many years of their presence in the game, pick your own eyebrow raiser.
The overall impression is although the game was free to become a national one and they play it all over England and did so in south Wales, the playing strength of the game remains Humberside, west Yorkshire and over the hill to Oldham, then across to West Lancashire.
Unlike soccer and RU our junior ARL roots are limited and we fight for the same kids, most of whom are a car drive from anything from two to half a dozen SL clubs.
Anyway there you go, I enjoyed doing that. If you disagree with the stats please do your own fully before moaning to me.