I think the teams that have ended up going North has more to do with promotion than competition guidelines.
This is new ( well a new guise of the WCC concept. ).
Somewhat like the NRL nines which turned into a raging success.....because it was new ( again another known formula, in a new guise ) teams had varying attitudes towards whether they go all out or they use a squad of ' left overs' to patronise the event.
As has been stated, the Broncos brand is respected in the same ilk as brands like Wigan, while not as old as Wigan....the Broncos name is associated with the modern game and a dynastic pedigree.
Saints are well liked up there. Old school team with plenty of Ex pat Poms forming their supporter base in Australia ( the Dragons have the best singing chants / much more so than Glory glory....by virtue of being spontaneously developed by their fans in that famous English tradition of chants).
The other thing about these matchups is that it is actually more useful in terms of allowing a challenge to the idea that every NRL team is superior to ESL teams.
These middle of the road , bottom eight / lower eight NRL sides playing top four opponents, gives a gauge between comps as opposed to comparing elite V elite of the respective comps.
England have more to lose reputation wise.....from this comp than the NRL teams....who have a ready made excuse in the travel factor....insulating them from criticism.
I hope next time there are three teams, the NRL change the ' friendly teams' to the likes of the Storm and other clubs with the Dynasty of success in the modern era.
After a couple tournaments Aussie Top three plays Europe top three.
Well said as usual Mt Smart
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