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Everything posted by Chris22

  1. If you give the power to 12 chairmen all of whom have an equal right to speak on behalf of "Super League", you're going to get contradictions and public disagreements which leads to speculation and misinformation. This was entirely foreseeable when this change happened, and I can only see it getting worse when big decisions have to be made.
  2. Widnes miss another DG attempt! It's finished. 13-12 FT
  3. 13-6 now. Cas edging there way to the win.
  4. I don't understand why Ian Lenegan feels that he has the authority to speak on behalf of the Super League, or why he seems to think he has the right to dictate who should or should not play in Super League. Australia already has a professional league, and we should not be a competition that subsides clubs that the NRL don't want. I'm all for self-sufficient clubs like Toronto (and New York if this proves to be the case) to be admitted in to the RFL, to try and expand the game in to new countries, but we should leave Perth for the ARL to decide to admit, or not.
  5. The worst thing is that this shouldn't come as a surprise. For countless years, Catalans have underachieved in spectacular style. Look at the side they had out today, they’ve got some good players. Mead is great full back, Broughton would get in to a lot of Super League sides. Sam Moa is an international class player, McIlorum has been a stalwart at Wigan for years, Garcia and Casty both have NRL experience. Greg Bird is a former Aussie international, and the likes of Bousquet and Baitieri are powerful players. This side is nowhere near bad enough to be conceding 40 to Widnes. That being said, they do have some strange selections. Surely they can must a better French centre/wing partnership than Iain Thornley and Lewis Tierney, the former who is a bit of a journeyman, and the latter has never really impressed. I also cannot fathom why they have signed Samisoni Langi when they have a talented half back like Albert as a sub or more often a reserve. Then you move on to the coach. A man who without any first team head coach experience was appointed to the position of coach of the then Super League and World Club Champions. He managed to take Bradford from this position to a side that regularly missed out of Super League play offs and starting a decline from which they haven’t recovered. Despite this, and mainly due to a lack of any applicants, he was appointed as the coach of the national team coach. Whilst I accept that as an England coach you’re on a hiding to nothing, he failed to guide us to a World Cup Final at home. I would hope that Catalans ambition would stretch further than a coach who hasn’t really had any coaching success, aside from a series win over New Zealand in 2015. Whilst McNamara doesn’t help matters, there are problems that supersede him. They’ve had a long list of talented imports that have all come and gone, with almost all making next to no impact. There have been too many imports who seem to treat Catalans as a holiday. Last year was a case in point. I cannot recall a team that I have seen in any sport show as little effort than the Catalans of 2017, particularly from around June onwards. They have struggled for away form since they joined Super League. There discipline is, and always has been disgraceful. Today for example, they lost the penalty count 15-3. You can’t win a match playing like that. For me, with Catalans there’s always an excuse. Too much travelling, too much player turnover, too many internationals, two languages being spoken. The only time they’ve really looked like a team was when Trent Robinson was in charge. For them to succeed, they need a no-nonsense coach who insists that they communicate in French to instill a winning culture. They have a unique selling point to attract players, a decent stadium, good crowds and a feeder team. Their consistent failings are as baffling as they are unacceptable.
  6. Michael Carter / TV deal etc (Merged threads)

    Absolutely. The fact that the clubs agreed to a TV deal that nobody, in Michael Carter's words, "had a proper look at" is staggering. This deal was of critical importance, yet clubs voted blindly in favour of it! I can't say that inspires confidence in them being responsible for the future of Super League. I am also concerned that Michael Carter thinks that Super League chairman have a right to interfere in matters involving the national team and how the RFL's central funding is distributed to Championship and League 1 clubs. The more I read about this, the more concerned I am.
  7. Kato Ottio

    Very sadly, the news has been confirmed by Widnes.
  8. Front page of League Weekly makes interesting reading, and is precisely what I feared.
  9. I don't want to sound downbeat, but... The clubs were responsible for accepting the farcical Stobart deal and introducing a marquee player allowance whilst refusing to stump up £30K per side for a reserve competition. I fear that effectively having 12 CEO's running the league is going to lead to more selfish decisions which will impact hugely on Championship clubs. A closed shop where only Super League clubs have a say in how the sport is run seems a real possibility to me, at the expense of the semi-professional, amateur and international game. I hope it works, but the clubs can't simply be allowed to do as they please and there must be some form of RFL involvement. On the positive side, it no longer allows clubs to abdicate responsibility. A prime example being Ian Lenegen, who has done nothing but criticise the recent TV deal with SKY, which he voted in favour of! I hope that decisions are made in the interests of the sport and not the bank balances of club chairmen.
  10. Why is Yorkshire so far behind Lancashire?

    Because minimum standards were introduced so Leigh, Salford and St Helens built their long-promised new stadia. Many Yorkshire clubs didn't do anything in terms of theirs, and we then returned to P & R with no minimum standards.
  11. Whilst Sky are on occasions deserving of criticism, some of this is unjustified. 1. Catalans do not have a deal to show their games in France next year yet, therefore Sky cannot take a feed from the host broadcaster. 2. Sky do not have the rights to show the New Zealand tour, so why would they publicise it in a "rugby league on sky in 2018" article? 3. Sky have not announced any rights to show any of the matches to be shown in Australia next year, either Super League or NRL, so again cannot publicise this. However, I agree that Sky's decision to buy the rights to the Championship just to prevent other broadcasters showing the sport is an awful tactic, and whoever agreed to this deal needs to take a look at themselves. I'd honestly rather see 6 matches spread over the course of the season rather than all stockpiled into one weekend. As for a midweek magazine show (that was criticised no-end by the fans), Sky haven't shown one for years due to overspending on football. Boots N All was cut alongside similar shows in other sports such as Total Rugby, Revista De La Liga, Ringside etc. The big challenge for the RFL is can they find any other competitor that can offer us the money, exposure and amount of content that Sky currently provide (I'm not saying it's brilliant)? I'm not sure that they could!
  12. Super League restructure coming

    The fact that we are even talking about restructure strikes me as daft. What other sport changes the way its premier competition is structured as frequently as we do? From memory, in the Super League era, we've had: 1996-97 - First place are champions, one side relegated, top 4 in the premiership 1998 - Introduced the Grand Final, changed to a top-five play off system, got rid of the Premiership 1999 - Increased number of sides to 14 (and did we remove relegation for a year or two?) 2000 - Reduced number of sides to 12 2002 - Increased size of play offs to six (and re-introduced promotion and relegation?) 2003 - Introduced the League Leaders' Shield 2005 - Relegated two sides this year 2008 - 09 - Introduced licensing, removed P & R, increased number of sides to 14, increased play offs to eight 2014-15 - Introduced "Super 8's", relegated two sides in 2014, left play offs at eight for 2014, before reducing to four. 2020 - Probably changing to yet another system. The number of changes we have made is ridiculous, and we hid behind the "innovation" tag, when really it's caused by a lack of confidence in our product/leadership/finances. They are just the changes that I can recall, there have been many others to the lower leagues no doubt, and others to the Super League that I've probably missed. I would have hoped that by now, after all of these changes, that we realised that changing our structure is not the answer. It's time that we start addressing the underlying problems in our domestic game, rather than another introducing another "innovative" system. We're going to reach a point soon that we have ran out of structures to try and then are faced head on with the real problems, such as a lack of academy teams, and struggling lower-league clubs.
  13. World Cup 2021

    Really good promo, and some interesting hints too. The promo says there will be 14 venues, and the article posted by the OP states that there are at least 30 applicants for venues. This shows that towns/cities should have to give guarantees of investment and marketing to be a host venue. At a guess, the applicants may be: 1. Wembley, London 2. Olympic Stadium, London 3. Old Trafford, Manchester 4. Etihad Stadium, Manchester 5. Anfield, Liverpool 6. St James' Park, Newcastle 7. Elland Road, Leeds 8. Bramall Lane, Sheffield 9. Ricoh Arena, Coventry 10. KCOM Stadium, Hull 11. DW Stadium, Wigan 12. John Smith's Stadium, Huddersfield 13. Headingley, Leeds 14. Langtree Park, St Helens 15. Halliwell Jones, Warrington 16. Keepmoat Stadium, Doncaster 17. The Shay, Halifax 18. Leigh Sports Village, Leigh 19. AJ Bell Stadium, Salford 20. Craven Park, Hull 21. Derwent Park, Workington 22. Memorial Stadium, Bristol 23. Halton Stadium, Widnes 24. New Cas Stadium? I'm struggling to think of any others that may be interested, considering that the tournament is going to played solely in England?
  14. 2018 Series v NZ

    In 2013, we attracted 67,000 to watch an England match in London. If the reports are accurate, we will then have hosted two international matches in London from November 2013 to November 2020. That is criminal. How can we expect crowds to turn up if we don't have an annual London test? We should have organised a repeat mid-season test against New Zealand in 2014 at Wembley again, because anyone who saw that 2013 match who have been desperate to go back again. Instead, we haven't had an international at Wembley since and one doesn't appear to be in the pipeline. Having regular annual matches in London (preferably the same venue) would help growth and build a reputation that this is more than just a sports match, it is a must see event. The same applies to Newcastle. We have laid foundations with the Magic Weekend, why not build on it with a test match? Particularly if they will be a host venue in 2021. Ditto Bristol. If a local went along to the USA vs Cooks match in 2013, they have not been given an opportunity to see a professional match again to date in their city. The next chance will be in 2019 with part-time players. We needed to strike whilst the iron was hot. The same for Coventry. We play there in 2016, and there is no plan to build on the modest success! The most frustrating thing is that we don't appear to be learning lessons. We seem to stick a pin in a map and say we'll play an international in location x. Generally, the crowds are local, reasonably sized, and enthusiastic. So what do we do to capitalise on it? Nothing! Host a Super League match there the following year? No. Host another international there? No. The British public love success because we don't have that much of it. I guarantee that a crowd at Bristol or Coventry would appreciate us beating France by 30/40 points far more than a crowd at Leigh. But we either lack the resources, guts or foresight to go for it. To be positive, UK international crowds have improved recently. We are now regularly selling out the likes of Huddersfield, Hull and Wigan. It's time for us to start using these venues for our matches against "tier 2" nations only and going bigger for the likes of New Zealand and Australia. That's why I'm all for one of the matches being held in a big heartland stadiums like Anfield, Etihad or Elland Road as long as we don't try and keep rugby league as a secret that only northerners can know about or attend.
  15. Four Nations 2016

    Even though the venues are public knowledge (in RL circles) they have not been officially announced, and won't be for another month. I doubt this will be public knowledge for fans of Coventry and Liverpool football teams for some time, meaning there is less time for promoting the matches. We cannot start marketing (if the RFL choose to) in Coventry, London and Liverpool respectively until some kind of official announcement and ticket sales starting, which looks like being early May. What kind of major event puts tickets on sale 6 months before the event?
  16. You could make an argument either for or against that point. However, it's a moot point as Hohaia has said he isn't contemplating any action against Flower or Wigan.
  17. Correct, but if Wigan have been encouraged to knock players out in the past, and later this occurs, questions do have to be asked. Wane may never have repeated these statements, but he has said them in the past. As the legal responsibility: "In a workplace context, an employer can be liable for the acts or omissions of its employees, provided it can be shown that they took place in the course of their employment" Source:
  18. Legally, they are responsible for the actions of their employees. I would also ask whether this sort of action is encouraged. After all, the head coach Shaun Wane was filmed in early 2014, in the dressing room saying to his players "knock people out, I cant give you more of a free reign that that." I'm glad that it has been pointed out that Flower started the incident, which Hohaia then retaliated to, which Flower then retaliated further. As for the statement from St Helens, I'm staggered that we have released that. It reads like something Derek Beaumont or Marwan Koukash would say. It's almost like a transcript of what was said when we heard the story, as opposed to carefully drafted legal statement. It appears rushed. Firstly, we put the words concussion symptoms in speech marks, implying that Lance Hohaia is either lying or exaggerating his symptoms. Since St Helens (I assume) have had no medical dealings with Hohaia since his retirement, I'm not sure how they are aware of his symptoms. Secondly, we disclose that this matter has already been in the hands of lawyers, which is unprofessional to disclose. When Saints usually release statements, they are calm, reasoned and well-thought through. And that's because they are usually attributed to Eamonn McManus, who is a very bright individual. I would be surprised if that statement was written by Eamonn McManus, as it varies so far from our usual stance. I would also be surprised if a lawyer had written that statement. We have hardly played our cards close to our chest, it appears as though we have revealed our full hand at this early stage, which is foolish. The statement should have been brief. It should have merely stated that we refute his allegations, pride ourselves on care offered to our players, and will seek redress. That's all that needed to be said at this moment. As I said earlier, we come out of this looking very bad. Hohaia and Shaun Briscoe have now both alleged that they have been pressurised to play, when they do not feel medically able. Surely this should warrant a wide-ranging investigation from the RFL.
  19. Ben Flower's actions caused, Lance Hohaia to suffer from: memory loss, headaches, a broken nose, sensitivity to light, sleeplessness and blackouts. Let's not forget he is the primary cause of this. His career carries on, Lance Hohaia's does not. Hardly seems fair. Is a ten match ban appropriate for this? No. Admittedly, the RFL would not have known of all of Hohaia's symptoms at the time, but they were certainly not unforeseeable. Ben Flower, St Helens, Wigan and The RFL (blame in that order) look terrible as a result of this and that impression is accurate. If the national press get hold of it, our sport will look pathetic. We deserve a lot of criticism all round for this incident. St Helens statement after the Grand Final talked about supporting Flower, but not Lance Hohaia. Hohaia's wellbeing is, or should have been St Helens concern. Should Hohaia's accusations be correct, St Helens completely failed in their duty of care, I can scarcely recall being as ashamed of my club. We should investigate it, and guilty parties at St Helens, who pressurised him to play should be dismissed.
  20. Will Widnes do a Leicester?

    Super League has had two "Leicester" moments in the last few years. The first came in 2013, when Huddersfield finished top of the league. The even bigger moment came in 2014, when Castleford came within one win of finishing top. But because of the huge focus on the play offs, the attention shifts away from them and back to the top sides. If the Premier League had a play off system, Leicester's chances of winning would reduce. For what it's worth, Widnes will be aiming for the top 8, and are now in a great position to get it.
  21. Sky, second rate

    I'd like to see Carney moved away from a presenter role. It's not that difficult to come across a competent presenter. Carney is probably Sky's best commentator and pundit, and should stick to that role. Phil Clarke was good when he started on Sky, but has been dragged down over recent years. Jon Wells' role is good too. Sky made big mistakes in getting rid of John Kear and Tony Rea, who were 2 great pundits. There's also no need for 5 people in the commentary box. One commentator and one co-commentator (two at a push) is sufficient. It's been better recently when Sky have started using a separate studio and commentary team. As for Barrie, Terry and Stuart Cummings. Don't think there's much need for them, they don't add a great deal.
  22. Wigan/Salford date change

    Can't blame the RFL for this one. We can't schedule a whole season because Wigan aren't allowed to play 24 hours before a football game. If they can't fulfil a fixture on a certain week, that is their problem!
  23. Shenton out for the season

    If the RFL are being consistent, you do wonder why this tackle was not considered worthy of a ban
  24. Video ref at Wigan v Catalan

    I'm not accusing any specific team of this, as many were guilty last year, but I agree that this did happen. Usually, a player would get a slightly high shot and not get a penalty. Then, the player would stay on the floor and feign injury, instead of playing the ball. The ref would stop the clock and Sky would show a replay, so that they can justify Stuart Cummings salary. The replay would show a marginally high shot and a penalty would be awarded. Another instance would be if a knock on was awarded. A player would stay down and the physio would come on (always holding the head, regardless of where the injury was), to ensure the referee stops play. Because of the break in play, the decision would be forensically examined to see whether there was a ball steal. Ironically, this backfired on St Helens last year against Castleford in June. We got the ball back after we had dropped out from our own sticks at a crucial point of the game. LMS decided to slowly play the ball to waste time, the ref stopped the clock and then overturned his decision following a consultation with the VR, and correctly awarded Castleford a penalty as LMS had taken out the Cas player who attempted to collect the ball. Cas kicked the 2 points, and won the game in the final seconds.
  25. Video ref at Wigan v Catalan

    I'd keep the video referee, but only allow them to look at what is asked for by the referee. In Thursday's game for Kevin Penny's try, the video referee was asked to look at the onside, yet he checked the grounding too. Why? The referee didn't ask for this or need clarification!