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Bearman

Will we ever catch up?

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Sky are generally very very good at Sports broadcasts.

I personally find the Aussie coverage dull - although i like some of the buildup and changing room stuff.

The graphics are often like a cheap xbox game.

Suppose its what we are used to seeing on our screens.

Who's the director on Sky these days? Is it still Neville Smith?

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Sky are generally very very good at Sports broadcasts.

I personally find the Aussie coverage dull - although i like some of the buildup and changing room stuff.

The graphics are often like a cheap xbox game.

Suppose its what we are used to seeing on our screens.

Like the "Robot" SL theme

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The worst thing I have ever seen in broadcast sport was that sbw thoughts thing a few weeks ago, it was embarrassing.

I agree that was sad and rubbish.

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Like the "Robot" SL theme

good point...not a massive fan if that. On the positive it is quite distinctive and really stands out if on in the background in the pub.

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I could live with that. I do agree with your comments about the need for more grassroots development though. Unfortunately in the UK SL is the be all and end all of rugby league. It wouldn't be so bad if the SL clubs were actually investing the same money and time in youth development as they once were but they are now in a process of contracting that development that in my opinion is to the detriment of the game as a whole.

Pom, I agree.

All good businesses need roots and foundations, there is no quick fix or easy option, you build a company or Sport from the ground up.

Its a pipe dream to think another area will embrace a new Sport. London is doomed to failure the way its been gone about.

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The season average for 2012 was 17,346. (For comparison: AFL was 32,748 but, as said, lower TV audience).

Sadly this isn't really true either. AFL games are broadcast for quite a bit longer than NRL games. This seems like its being picky but Cricket doesn't get huge figures because its average figure is speead over a longer period.

For instance if you calculated it like Union does with a new viewer every 15 minutes, AFL gets a fair bit more.

It is certainly closer than the crowds but the NRL is a clear second to AFL no matter how they look at it.

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I posted here a week or so ago about developing Juniors and School teams and a few people said that was rubbish.

Football (Soccer) has a huge following, why is that? because most people have played the game at some level, be it at School, the local 7th grade team in a Village or Town, in some way there has been a connection.Or there has been so many with a connection that the game looks like the game that is popular and the game to follow for the ones that have never played any Sport.

Australia has built the game where it is today in Oz by the local communities that promote the Juniors and their local games between small towns in the bush and country towns.

When SOO is played and they show the players photos and profiles look at where they come from, small local clubs built around local communities.

Build the foundations with the enthusiasts and get the game into all of the local Schools, its not a Flat Capper mentality its the obvious way to move forward.

The problem in England seems to have been the Cities and Towns that were Rugby League strongholds lost their way to some extent and decided importing players was easier and cheaper than building the infrastructure to develop a Junior player.

What are the chances of a Punter just deciding Rugby League looks like a great game although I know nothing at all about it other than I stumbled across it on a TV channel showing Ice Hockey and Badminton?

Or a team was just landed in my patch by the authorities, London, Wales, without any build up of the local juniors and community support, NONE

Salford are on a hiding to nothing, the money will not matter, there is no grass roots support and the money will fade before the enthusiasm grows.

An excellent excellent post.

Leeds as a club took this path around 2002, and today there are probably the most junior RL clubs in the city there has ever been, with a new junior club opening near us, an area that had no amateur league outside schools for 20 years.

I find many soccer fans can find the game at pro level tedious, but they go because that's their game, one they know, one they played, one they shared with their mates mums and dads.

Their excellent policy needs to be adopted by all the big clubs, for conversely only the big attractive SL clubs turn the heads of the local kids and inspire them to watch, play and make a career out of it.

This however can't be a policy for major growth. We are beyond that. It's more a policy for survival. So IMHO no we will not catch up, but we can stay in the game and survive.....

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It wouldn't be so bad if the SL clubs were actually investing the same money and time in youth development as they once were but they are now in a process of contracting that development that in my opinion is to the detriment of the game as a whole.

I don't know if that is true.

Leeds continue the player development above the academy through Hunslet.

Leeds continue to run an excellent academy

But they are working hard to widen the base of kids playing junior RL.

This isn't to me any contraction of the policy towards developing the game, far from it, what's most important is not a stand alone U23's but twice as many kids playing in Leeds.

Massive difference??

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so what is it without brisbane's 33k average???

It is fair to say that their crowds aren't as good as they should be. We often hear how it's like the Premier League when it isn't.

However, NRL fans are more fair weather than British fans and crowds fluctuate more. All 16 NRL clubs are capable of at least 20k plus crowds for big games. Put it this way Souths are capable of near 40k to huge games and probably more but for bread and butter games can drop under 10k.

Compare that to Wire who will rarely drop under 10k but who only sell put 14k a couple of times a year.

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Football is also popular because surprise scores are common enough to get fans interested. A low part time team can sometimes overturn an Arsenal or Man U etc. Low teams often get shocks etc at internanational level.

RL has gone down the path of following the Aussies into an evermore intensive and physically difficult game to play. This means that you need a very good balance in opposing teams to get a close score. This now means unfortunately we've created a Superman game (like NFL) before we became a world game. Few people will reach this level (despite having the skills) meaning that the internationals are predicatble.

The best thing would be to get the Aussies to make the game easier to play rather than it becoming more and more intensive.

By the way I'm sure the sport at grass roots would benefit from RL not becoming too fit/hard to play

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I'm sure the sport at grass roots would benefit from RL not becoming too fit/hard to play

I thought it was going to be a P & R post but not so. Great post.

Union used to play at all levels such that it was easy to play something I found out playing for a fourths, and the local club ran touch RU for the primary schoolkids who could all enjoy playing without getting battered, something my lad loved.

Soccer is successful because it can be played anywhere at every level right down to in the street.

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I thought it was going to be a P & R post but not so. Great post.

Union used to play at all levels such that it was easy to play something I found out playing for a fourths, and the local club ran touch RU for the primary schoolkids who could all enjoy playing without getting battered, something my lad loved.

Soccer is successful because it can be played anywhere at every level right down to in the street.

We played touch or "held" at School, we used a soft drink can filled with dirt or a tennis ball, at the local park we played 5 a side or often "Forcing's back where two kids could kick for space on a field, if caught on the full you got a 10 yard walk forward (no good for Tomkins) When you were over the try line it was over, you could play in pairs. Its all of these things that contribute to the Aussie game and developing kicking, positioning and catching skills.

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So we bring the game "up" to NRL standard but the game is still seen as a parochial northern sport,without better media coverage we are never going to attract huge crowds.

Rugby League will never be the number one sport in the UK as it is in Australia,soccer is king.

Terry, I did not allude to the notion that R/L would supercede Soccer here, ever, but what I do mean is that and this uncontetably true, had we the closer competitivness that exists in the NRL and the more contestable matches on going on a weekly basis, then there surely would be a better attendance level achieved especially within those clubs that cannot gain crowds now. Admittedly I would still possibly leave London out of that summation as I think they are on a hiding to nothing where support is concerned down there.

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Terry, I did not allude to the notion that R/L would supercede Soccer here, ever, but what I do mean is that and this uncontetably true, had we the closer competitivness that exists in the NRL and the more contestable matches on going on a weekly basis, then there surely would be a better attendance level achieved especially within those clubs that cannot gain crowds now. Admittedly I would still possibly leave London out of that summation as I think they are on a hiding to nothing where support is concerned down there.

You can't have a better competition without a larger player base to choose from.How many players are we missing out on because they have never even heard of Rugby League.

As for closer competitiveness,remind me of the score from the penrith-paramatta game?Hardly close was it.Yet again the myth that every NRL game is a hard fought tussle comes to the fore.

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Will the NRL ever have the sane world wide popularity of the EPL?

Answer: No

I disagree with this. I'm not sure what the future of the Euro soccer leagues is but I'm very, very confident that they will look markedly different to now in 20 (or even 10) years time. The current model of 4 or 5 teams (at most) - and always the same teams - playing for the spoils every year with the others just scrapping for the right to be there is unsustainable as fans of all but those 4 or 5 teams walk away. Whereas I can see NRL (and hopefully SL if we're brave enough to redistribute wealth etc.) gaining significant ground in the worldwide TV market if it plays its cards right.

It's easy to throw your weight behind the status quo but things change and ultimately NRL is a much better product than EPL.

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Football is also popular because surprise scores are common enough to get fans interested. A low part time team can sometimes overturn an Arsenal or Man U etc. Low teams often get shocks etc at internanational level.

Man Utd won this year's EPL by Xmas. The biggest side in Germany (Bayern) are 20 points clear.

Football is boring.

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The Yanks think Gridiron, Basketball, Baseball and Ice Hockey are the ducks Nuts, they have not done well in selling their brands overseas in any meaningful way, even with all their money and Media.

Salford are on a hiding to nothing, the money will not matter, there is no grass roots support and the money will fade before the enthusiasm grows.

Bit of a chicken and egg scenario growing the game, probably a mix of finance and commercial exposure, combined with a strong grassroots presence is best. Makes it difficult when you have one and not the other.

Probably a bit unfair on the Yanks there too. Basketball is maybe the 2nd biggest team sport in the world if you look at its spread, number of pro competitions and that, they've even got the right idea with grass roots development. Basketball is doing very well around the world. Britain seems sort of an anomaly in that it hasn't made much inroads here commercially, but even still there's a lot of kids play it in school, in parks, in their gardens, the platform isn't that bad, if they could get the NBA on a better station or get a British pro comp together they'd be onto something. If i look out the back door of my house I can count a couple of basketball nets on the adjacent houses.

Ice Hockey does alright in Europe from what I've heard, some of the nordic and eastern European countries like it. Baseball is also meant to have a decent presence in the Americas and Asia I think.

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Basketball is reasonably big in Europe too. As is handball. It strikes me that in Germany and Switzerland at least, there is a lot more focus on actually participating in things. I was taken aback to hear that Brits don't like team sports, but if you think about it how many guys actually play a team sport. Maybe this is a bad place to ask, but I bet that over all it is prety low compared to elsewhere in Europe.

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Sky are generally very very good at Sports broadcasts.

I personally find the Aussie coverage dull - although i like some of the buildup and changing room stuff.

The graphics are often like a cheap xbox game.

Suppose its what we are used to seeing on our screens.

Aussie graphics are much better for me. Sky Sports are uncreative and the way they replay stuff without delay frustrates the hell out me. How many times do you miss something because the people in charge of replays switch to a replay immediately? I've not seen untold tries and fights in SL because they've been showing a replay while the latter was taking place. That's the problem with the Sky Sports coverage, they're always looking for cheap ways to make something exciting, whether it's abusing the replay system to make the game seem super-duper fast paced(when it's not), or commentators shouting at the top of their lungs at bog standard plays.

Australians do it a lot better, probably because they're always copying Americans and they do sports broadcasts better than anybody, save for all the bloody adverts.

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I disagree with this. I'm not sure what the future of the Euro soccer leagues is but I'm very, very confident that they will look markedly different to now in 20 (or even 10) years time. The current model of 4 or 5 teams (at most) - and always the same teams - playing for the spoils every year with the others just scrapping for the right to be there is unsustainable as fans of all but those 4 or 5 teams walk away. Whereas I can see NRL (and hopefully SL if we're brave enough to redistribute wealth etc.) gaining significant ground in the worldwide TV market if it plays its cards right.

It's easy to throw your weight behind the status quo but things change and ultimately NRL is a much better product than EPL.

The same teams have been winning for decades now. Yet people still flock to stadiums (even for teams with zero chance of silverware), and their TV and commercial rights continue to grow. How come the fans aren't walking like you seem to think?

Ultimately the NRL is a better product than the EPL? Hate to burst your bubble, but football dwarfs rugby league. Thailand isn't going to pay £250m over 3 years for the NRL like they did just with the EPL as they don't care about rugby league regardless of how much you think its a better product. Good luck to the NRL in the "global market", because right now they get approximately nothing for their overseas rights.

Man Utd won this year's EPL by Xmas. The biggest side in Germany (Bayern) are 20 points clear.

Football is boring.

German Bundesliga attendance: 42,000

EPL attendnace: 36,000

For all their one sidedness, people still seem to be flocking to stadiums, including those teams that have no chance of winning. How does that compute in your own little world?

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You can't have a better competition without a larger player base to choose from.How many players are we missing out on because they have never even heard of Rugby League.

I don't think that's true. What seems to matter is getting really good coaching into athletically able kids.

The evidence suggests that you could pick 200 ten year old lads at random, give them fifteen years of the highest quality coaching in the right environment and you could then pick a 17, just from that group of 200, and they would run the Kangaroos over with ease.

What appears to matter is the quality of coaching and experience, far more so than the quantity of kids playing the game.

Read Bounce by Matthew Syed. It has a great opening chapter on how Silverdale Road in Reading came to have a table tennis player who won three national junior titles, another player (his brother) who became England #1, Commonwealth Gold medalist twice and Olympian three times, another, unrelated, player who won Commonwealth Gold and UK Championships, and five other (unrelated) players who represented England or were English champions.

For a period in the 1980s, this one street produced more outstanding table tennis players than the rest of the nation combined.

It's a fascinating story. Well worth looking into.

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Personally, I don't think we'll ever catch the aussies up and I don't have a problem with that. The NRL is light years ahead of what we could ever achieve in England; we have no equivalent to State of Origin and the Kangaroos are just remorseless. We may win the occasional match, perhaps a series. Maybe, like New Zealand, those wins will be in finals. Gotta enjoy the challenge though.

I think that isn't true at all.

It would be interesting to explore how the British came to dominate the world of cycling I think. Or how the Australians from being the laughing stock of sport in the 1970s to the full spectrum dominance of the late 90s.

Or we could talk about Stevo's commentary...

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The attendance at the regular season league game in the Canterbury Bulldogs v Rabbitohs game the other day was over 51,000.

No wonder the NRL attracts the money.

51, 686 to be exact, cause I was there, and there was no trouble at all in the crowd. Really great experience seein the ANZ stadium packed out like that rather than 2/3's empty like it normally is on game day, cant wait till origin game 1 to see what its like on a bumper crowd. Just wish the fans would sing more though, there was a small band of Bunnies fans in the 'warren' who sang throughout the game but other times the atmosphere is just so serious, miss the days of the popular stand at Knowlsey Road before I moved here to Sydney. Oh well, have to see what its like at Dragons vs Knights this weekend.....the hardships of Sydney life....

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What seems to matter is getting really good coaching into athletically able kids.

The evidence suggests that you could pick 200 ten year old lads at random, give them fifteen years of the highest quality coaching in the right environment and you could then pick a 17, just from that group of 200, and they would run the Kangaroos over with ease.

Blimey Steve.

No such thing as natural talent then.

Having being involved in a kids soccer club and watched a couple of hundred kids progress, I have to say I don't believe this one bit.

The gamebreakers and goalscorers and try poachers who make the difference are those one in fifty with the natural talent for a game for me.

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I think that isn't true at all.

It would be interesting to explore how the British came to dominate the world of cycling I think. Or how the Australians from being the laughing stock of sport in the 1970s to the full spectrum dominance of the late 90s.

Or we could talk about Stevo's commentary...

Stevo's commentary and a lack of understanding about how to develop talent or the technical aspects of the game are linked.

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League Express - Mon 10th April 2017

Rugby League World - April 2017