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  1. It is absolute madness. I currently live in a country where tackle rugby union is only allowed after 16. It is a mess. They cant tackle, get themselves in awkward positions but, more importantly, they are playing mens rugby completely inexperienced in the physical side of the game. And 16 or 18 is not the time to learn tackling where you could be completely green behind the ears and have a 16 stone fella steaming in at you. There is no time to learn technique and that is when people get hurt. Tackling is about confidence, experience, and technique and that needs to be learnt pre-pubesent before boys start to grow into men. I started playing League at 13 (fullback) and nearly 30 years on tackling is still the weakest part of my game as I never got the fundamentals early. I also coached Union in South Africa (League options were limited) and the Afrikaaner schools (as opposed to the "English" or state schools) had the kids playing barefoot tackle rugby from almost the day they can hold a ball and they produce confident teens and young men fearless in the physical side of the sport. Something that couldnt be learnt as an adolesent or adult. EDIT: Survey completed. Good luck with your dissertation.
  2. Quality of Rugby League

    Yeah, I agree with the above. Too early in the season todraw any conclusions. Of course, money will always play a role in who leaves and who is brought in from elsewhere. We all know SL cant compete with the cheque book. On a positive, I was chatting yesterday with a mate. We both played a good standard 20 years ago and both think the amateur level is far advanced from our day. Players fitter, teams more organised so there are good things going on even if we would all like more kids/schools playing.
  3. At the Dons today and it was a good experience and game. I thought the Bears looked OK and both teams looked decent for an opener. I still feel that we (Donny) have a big enough town and great facilities to do something special at a higher level but we need more people to attend and local talent coming through. Regarding Miloudi, perhaps I still have not forgiven him for the spitting incident last year but I cant see him doing much at Hull. Tricky and skilled but runs awkwardly in straight lines and is undersized. Wasnt as if Coventry were destroyed today by a DR young superstar in the making but a talented and tempramental journeyman.
  4. Fair enough. If that is the important issue in play and people feel strongly then I can fully understand. I dont personally mind but can see why many would.
  5. If this game get 5,000 watching and some decent local press then it is worth doing. I am looking for a reason for a weekend in NY June/July time so this could be cool. How could it be a disaster? Perhaps if empty stadium, backer loses money, poor game and confuses people about the two codes? Still, why not?
  6. A bit late to this topic and my advice is a little old - 20 or so years ago. I played at Leeds Uni and the standard was decent. In a year I missed through injury, we got through to the second round of the Challenge Cup which wasnt bad. In fairness though, and things may have changed, we were just not big and tough enough to compete with good amateur sides. Most of the first XIII (including myself) were academy players elsewhere but the beauty of a big university is that the 2nd XIII was a decent standard as well and made up of players from all different backgrounds and countries - lots of Union lads whose face didnt fit in the Union clique - who had a great time. My recomendation would be, dont pick your university based on the League program but a big Univerity running a decent 2nd XIII will give you lots of opportunities.
  7. winter league

    I doubt it is part of ther strategy either. Most of them are pretty much treading water though with no real chance of the big league so if there was a winter league then this is what Id suggest -- I am not saying they should do it though. Donny doesnt have the history of the teams included (focused on small clubs with a rich and successful history - all at least Challenge Cup finalists) and the town is big enough and has the stadium to have the potential for a Super League club despite it obv never going to happen.
  8. winter league

    I prefer summer rugby but if we were to do winter rugby then Id like to see it as a throwback second tier featuring teams that have great heritage but no chance of ever being competitive Super League teams - increases the profile of heartland clubs marginally, gives more product to sell across 52 weeks a year, more exposure for up-and-coming players etc. Then let Super League be as expanisionist as possible with the small traditional clubs having a protected winter niche. A fair number of Challenge Cup final appearances in the example 10 team league below though I dont think York and Hunslet are officially the same clubs. Winter League Workington Barrow Swinton Oldham Batley Hunslet Dewsbury Rochdale York Keighley
  9. Polarisation

    My life became far less stressful when I came to the realisation that "reasonable minds can differ." I hope others can find the same zen.
  10. Doncaster

    As I mentioned in a previous post, I bought tickets for my parents and kids (I work overseas) and this is a great way to try and rebuild. Dons have a fantastic stadium but unfortunately it is south of the river when Rugby League has historcally been a north of the river sport. It is only a few miles from the old stadium but it is still outside of its base and we know how fickle League fans can be There is a lot to like about this club and it is far better run than it was 20 years or so when we got over 6,000 at Tattersfield. The idea to attract people to the games in the hope they will return and tell their friends and others who used to attend is a good one. Great stadium, good organization, just now need a team on the field to match the other areas without breaking the bank.
  11. Yeah, I would potentially have it every year as one of the tent poles the season is built around
  12. Probably not worth a thread on its own but...well...here it is. With talk of restructuring, 9s, expansion, focus on "events" like Magic and GF why not end the pre-season with a 9s tournament in...Spain to check all the boxes. Benefits - extra product to sell, increased exposure outside the corridor, helps establish 9s My choice is Malaga for 5 reasons - Pre-season bonding and a jolly for the players - 60+ thousands Brits living in Malaga and the surrounding area - A couple of decent stadiums of different sizes to work with - Easy and cheap for UK based fans to get to (just checked and can get Doncaster-Malaga for 60 quid) - Could do 16 teams like Auckland 9s (12 Super League + Toulouse + Toronto + London + Leigh) and have Spain vs Italy as an exhibition. Or add Spain and Italy national teams to the main draw and have a women's series. - Warm weather on average 17–18 °C (63–64 °F). My preference would have been Barcelona given proximity to France but colder then Malaga in Jan/Feb with a smaller Brit population.
  13. We dont have a functioning international fixture calendar. If we dont fix it - and all evidence suggest we will not - then a WC every 2 years would provide a pretty good structure. No reason why it should be every 4 years.
  14. Challenge 1000

    I live overseas but paid for my parents and my two kids today as part of this program. My Mum never had any interest in League (despite me playing, she never watched) but was converted when she travelled on a Dons Supporters bus to watch her first game last year against Leeds in the CC. I cant say if this offer will be good financially for the Dons but it has certainly worked getting people like my Mum and kids commited to seeing a number of games.
  15. I must have turned the TV off too soon. Did we win then? Defence keeps you in the game but we just didnt have it in offense and, perhaps, other selections would have added that little to take advantage of the great defence.