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Joe Whitley

RFL want Great Britain tour in 2015

75 posts in this topic

It'll be pointless and a tad fake. I'd pick Rhys Evans and Ben Flower so the side has a bit of credibility.

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Can we not have the empire v the rest of the world.

 

That way we can have Australia on our side and thrash those pesky rubbish nations.

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Your "100 years of GB" is off — there was no such team as Great Britain until after World War II.  Games against Australia and New Zealand before then involved England, not GB, as programs and advertisements from those years show very clearly. 

That's not correct. There's a clear distinction between the games played as England and games played as 'Northern Union' in the early 1900s, and there was definitely a GB team before WW2.

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I disagree. I think it can only be a good thing to bring back the GB tour. As long as nothing else suffers as a result of course.

I just don't like the Tag England.....Great Britain Rugby League is a Brand....regardless of where the players come from

 

 

It gives us a distinction from Union

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I just don't like the Tag England.....Great Britain Rugby League is a Brand....regardless of where the players come from

 

 

It gives us a distinction from Union

 

Only in your head.

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I just don't like the Tag England.....Great Britain Rugby League is a Brand....regardless of where the players come from

It gives us a distinction from Union

GB RL is a brand to a handful of people, not the wider public. And if it's irrelevant where the players come from, why not call them Europe?

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I think having GB tours on a infrequent, say 4 yearly basis, is a good idea.  Having individual nations internationals plus GB concept seems sensible to me. Even though currently the team may not be much different that England one has to hope that the game in the other home nations manages to develop over the forthcoming years and hence bringing more non English players into potentially being available.

 

Otherwise if we don't think the game will develop in the other home nations we may as well pull the plug now in those area's. Surely you have to take long term view that the game will develop, otherwise why bother, and hence the GB format on a 4 year cycle makes sense.   Two or three tours hence it would be 8 to 12 years thus if we don't believe the game will strengthen in the other home nations to produce some candidates then we may as well say that the home nations will be forever weak and wonder whether its worth persisting. I'm more positive and think its worth the effort.

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Your "100 years of GB" is off — there was no such team as Great Britain until after World War II.  Games against Australia and New Zealand before then involved England, not GB, as programs and advertisements from those years show very clearly.  As I've said before,

 

Tours where the same countries play each other over and over again = a small-time international sport with too few contries for a real international program.  They're a relic of the past and should stay in the past.

 

Your comment in last paragraph actually reminded me of the five/six nations. Yet interest is amazingly high. Yep other nations for tours and world cups but the big interest is the six nations and NZ and Australia.   That is playing the same teams over and over again yet huge demand.

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Tours where the same countries play each other over and over again = a small-time international sport with too few contries for a real international program.  They're a relic of the past and should stay in the past.

 

How many 'big-time' international sports don't have tours?

 

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Your comment in last paragraph actually reminded me of the five/six nations. Yet interest is amazingly high. Yep other nations for tours and world cups but the big interest is the six nations and NZ and Australia.   That is playing the same teams over and over again yet huge demand.

You misunderstood me then, the Six Nations is a tournament, not a tour.  Tours like the one proposed typically involve only involve two countries, not a group of countries who all play each other.  They're two different things.

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How many 'big-time' international sports don't have tours?

 

Considering that tours like the one proposed typically involve only involve two or three countries, pretty much all of them.

 

The three biggest team sports in the world are soccer, basketball and handball.  In those sports there are many national teams, which play many games a year against many different countries.  The majority of these games are played in continental championships, world cups or the Olympics (and their respective qualifying tournaments).  Any other games played are friendlies and much less important than those in tournaments.  If the English soccer team ever went on a tour like the proposed GB one, it must have been long before our time.

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You misunderstood me then, the Six Nations is a tournament, not a tour.  Tours like the one proposed typically involve only involve two countries, not a group of countries who all play each other.  They're two different things.

 

Yep I agree to your six nations comment but the NZ and Aussies in autumn internationals are tours. Yes more than just England but then less national teams is the failure of RL over many decades to be interested in expanding RL and having interest including fans in international game rather than their own narrower interest in their local clubs.

 

So whilst not ideal in comparison to union a GB tour that included secondary fixtures, as in mid week equivalent in Union Lions tours, that included the likes of Fiji, Samoa, PNG etc and club games.  Of course for me it would be every 4 years or so with national England/NZ tours here and/or 4 nations competition.  I'm sure NZ would be happy to tour here and we there even if Aussies turn nose up.

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The three biggest team sports in the world are soccer, basketball and handball.

Personally, I would only class soccer as a 'big-time' international sport out of those 3. The top level of basketball is the NBA - there isn't an international competition that generates huge publicity or global interest. In terms of handball I couldn't name you a single team, let alone the name of any international competition. Just because these sports have loads of international fixtures doesn't mean that their respective international structures are commercially successful.

 

I'm not sure international RL should be looking to either basketball or handball as a blueprint for a successful international sport. Soccer is a global behemoth with immense financial backing that is impossible to compete with, so I'm not sure RL will get very far trying to emulate that sport either. Which leads me to sports like RU and cricket, both of which have tours.

 

I think RL needs to play to its strengths and plan an international calendar that works for the sport, rather than trying to mimic other sports that may have completely different strengths and weaknesses to ours. For me, this would probably contain elements of both international tournaments and tours, because I see international RL being far more similar to the likes of cricket and RU than it is to soccer or handball.

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Reasonable comment RLG.

I still think bringing back GB is wrong though. :P

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Personally, I would only class soccer as a 'big-time' international sport out of those 3. The top level of basketball is the NBA - there isn't an international competition that generates huge publicity or global interest. In terms of handball I couldn't name you a single team, let alone the name of any international competition. Just because these sports have loads of international fixtures doesn't mean that their respective international structures are commercially successful.

 

Basketball is pretty huge over the globe, probably the second most popular team sport. There are professional leagues over the globe and the WC and Olympics are far more prestigious than the NBA. Handball is the second most popular sport in Europe and is also popular in Asia, SA and Africa. I think we underestimate the popularity of these sports in the UK, because they aren't as big, but I wouldn't complain if RL could have the international appeal basketball or handball have. 

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Basketball is pretty huge over the globe, probably the second most popular team sport. There are professional leagues over the globe and the WC and Olympics are far more prestigious than the NBA. Handball is the second most popular sport in Europe and is also popular in Asia, SA and Africa. I think we underestimate the popularity of these sports in the UK, because they aren't as big, but I wouldn't complain if RL could have the international appeal basketball or handball have. 

I'm not disputing the global appeal of these sports - I'm questioning their competitive international structures and how they relate - if at all - to rugby league. Does basketball have a world cup? Does handball have a world cup? What are the viewing figures, tv and sponsorship deals etc for these international competitions? I would dispute that a basketball world cup is more prestigious than the NBA - what do the figures say?

 

Either way - are they sports that RL should look to mimic? If handball and basketball are as massive as you say, is it worth RL trying to copy what they do in these sports? The strategy for our game has to be something that suits RL - not a pale imitation of what works for other sports.

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I'm not disputing the global appeal of these sports - I'm questioning their competitive international structures and how they relate - if at all - to rugby league. Does basketball have a world cup? Does handball have a world cup? What are the viewing figures, tv and sponsorship deals etc for these international competitions? I would dispute that a basketball world cup is more prestigious than the NBA - what do the figures say?

 

Yeah they both have WCs. According to the IHF, 2013's Handball WC had: 150 countries showing the tournament live, 98 million watched the final and the tournament had more than 1600 media accreditations. For basketball, most recent was in 2010. According to FIBA: It was shown in 132 countries, 800 million watched the tournament, with China v Greece having 65 million in China alone and 30 million people visited the official website during the championships. 

 

Maybe in the USA the NBA is seen as most important, but not in Spain or France it wouldn't be. It's the same as Australians claiming SOO is the pinnacle of rugby league, when it only is to Australians. 

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Personally, I would only class soccer as a 'big-time' international sport out of those 3. The top level of basketball is the NBA - there isn't an international competition that generates huge publicity or global interest. In terms of handball I couldn't name you a single team, let alone the name of any international competition. Just because these sports have loads of international fixtures doesn't mean that their respective international structures are commercially successful.

 

I'm not sure international RL should be looking to either basketball or handball as a blueprint for a successful international sport. Soccer is a global behemoth with immense financial backing that is impossible to compete with, so I'm not sure RL will get very far trying to emulate that sport either. Which leads me to sports like RU and cricket, both of which have tours.

 

I think RL needs to play to its strengths and plan an international calendar that works for the sport, rather than trying to mimic other sports that may have completely different strengths and weaknesses to ours. For me, this would probably contain elements of both international tournaments and tours, because I see international RL being far more similar to the likes of cricket and RU than it is to soccer or handball.

Here's a list for both basketball and handball.

Basketball

FIBA World Cup

FIBA European Championship (Euro-basket)

FIBA African Championship

FIBA Asian Championship

FIBA American Championship

FIBA Oceanian Championship

Handball

IHF World Championship

EHF European Championship

AHB African Championship

AHF Asian Championship

PAHF American Championship

OCHF Oceania Championship

 

These are all directly comparable to their soccer equivalents, that's why I consider basketball and handball in the same class as soccer.

 

The problem with reinstating tours is that in the old days they were the pinnacle of RL's international game and world cups were an afterthought, scheduled haphazardly with regular format changes.  Now that the sport has a proper world cup schedule, the world cup needs to become the pinnacle of international RL, not tours.

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That's why I would like to see a European Championship and an Oceania Championship in RL. I'm going to keep banging on about it until the RLIF decide to have one!

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Here's a list for both basketball and handball.

Basketball

FIBA World Cup

FIBA European Championship (Euro-basket)

FIBA African Championship

FIBA Asian Championship

FIBA American Championship

FIBA Oceanian Championship

Handball

IHF World Championship

EHF European Championship

AHB African Championship

AHF Asian Championship

PAHF American Championship

OCHF Oceania Championship

 

These are all directly comparable to their soccer equivalents, that's why I consider basketball and handball in the same class as soccer.

The may have a similar structure, but they don't even come close to soccer in economical terms.

 

 

 

The problem with reinstating tours is that in the old days they were the pinnacle of RL's international game and world cups were an afterthought, scheduled haphazardly with regular format changes.  Now that the sport has a proper world cup schedule, the world cup needs to become the pinnacle of international RL, not tours.

I agree that the World Cup should be a pinnacle, and I agree with trying to produce a coherent structure that incorporates European tournaments, Oceania tournaments, Americas tournaments and World tournaments.

 

However, tours are not inherently bad. Sports such as RU and cricket utilise tours in their international calendars and they are commercially successful and generate huge fan and media interest.

 

I believe that an effective balance of tours and tournaments can help to create a strong international calendar, and the two do not need to be mutually exclusive.

 

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Yeah they both have WCs. According to the IHF, 2013's Handball WC had: 150 countries showing the tournament live, 98 million watched the final and the tournament had more than 1600 media accreditations. For basketball, most recent was in 2010. According to FIBA: It was shown in 132 countries, 800 million watched the tournament, with China v Greece having 65 million in China alone and 30 million people visited the official website during the championships. 

 

Maybe in the USA the NBA is seen as most important, but not in Spain or France it wouldn't be. It's the same as Australians claiming SOO is the pinnacle of rugby league, when it only is to Australians. 

So is it worth RL trying to directly emulate these sports? Our game only has 2 fully pro competitions in England and Australia. How many handball and basketball leagues are fully professional? New Zealand and France are the only other nations with full time pro clubs. After that what have we got? If we try and pretend that - as of 2014 - we can produce a competitive international calendar on the scale of those you mention then we're kidding ourselves.

 

The long-term aim has to be to work towards this type of schedule, but that doesn't mean that tours are somehow completely irrelevant and serve no purpose. In the short term they can help to provide some meaningful international structure alongside a tournament schedule.

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So is it worth RL trying to directly emulate these sports? Our game only has 2 fully pro competitions in England and Australia. How many handball and basketball leagues are fully professional? New Zealand and France are the only other nations with full time pro clubs. After that what have we got? If we try and pretend that - as of 2014 - we can produce a competitive international calendar on the scale of those you mention then we're kidding ourselves.

 

The long-term aim has to be to work towards this type of schedule, but that doesn't mean that tours are somehow completely irrelevant and serve no purpose. In the short term they can help to provide some meaningful international structure alongside a tournament schedule.

 

Yeah, don't get me wrong, I know RL is a long way behind both of those sports, but it's a good target to try and emulate in say 50 years from now. I don't think it is impossible to have a European and an Oceania Championship in RL in the next couple of years, down the line we could have an Americas and an African one, but they are at least 5 years away. But having more regional championships is the way forward for the sport and they could be quarennial and in between the WCs, so there is a major tournament every two years. It also gives the likes of Wales, Scotland, Fiji, PNG etc more big and meaningful games. 

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So is it worth RL trying to directly emulate these sports? Our game only has 2 fully pro competitions in England and Australia. How many handball and basketball leagues are fully professional? New Zealand and France are the only other nations with full time pro clubs. After that what have we got? If we try and pretend that - as of 2014 - we can produce a competitive international calendar on the scale of those you mention then we're kidding ourselves.

The long-term aim has to be to work towards this type of schedule, but that doesn't mean that tours are somehow completely irrelevant and serve no purpose. In the short term they can help to provide some meaningful international structure alongside a tournament schedule.

it doesn't matter about fully pro to start with, it will br easier for say wales for example to attract sponsorship to the club game if there is a recognisable national welsh team.....

also America could easily have a torny as us vs canada attracts big crouds....through in jamaica and a guest club and you have a four nations....

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Here's a list for both basketball and handball.

Basketball

FIBA World Cup

FIBA European Championship (Euro-basket)

FIBA African Championship

FIBA Asian Championship

FIBA American Championship

FIBA Oceanian Championship

Handball

IHF World Championship

EHF European Championship

AHB African Championship

AHF Asian Championship

PAHF American Championship

OCHF Oceania Championship

 

These are all directly comparable to their soccer equivalents, that's why I consider basketball and handball in the same class as soccer.

 

The problem with reinstating tours is that in the old days they were the pinnacle of RL's international game and world cups were an afterthought, scheduled haphazardly with regular format changes.  Now that the sport has a proper world cup schedule, the world cup needs to become the pinnacle of international RL, not tours.

 

Soccer is so far ahead of every other sport it's not true.  That said, basketball and handball have a much wider global spread that the sports that anglo-saxons tend to put in their second tier (rugby [union], cricket etc).  Although cricket has India which massively skews everything.

 

Incidentally, handball may have all those championships but the Oceania one is a bit of a joke.  Australia either walkover or comfortably beat a New Zealand side every time and then qualify for a World Championship at which they are outgunned.  Still, the set-up is there and I think it would be possible via wiki, the IHF and EHF pages to identify continental and global competitions in place for both men and women (at age and senior levels) until at least the end of the next Olympic cycle.  There is a club game and a fair number of professional and semi-professional leagues (men and women) across Europe.  Germany's Bundesliga I'm pretty sure outdraws Super League in terms of average attendance and sponsorship.  You should all follow our local team Dunkerque as they fight off evil Qataris to try and win the French championship ahead of Paris St Germain and Montpellier.

 

As for lessons: the one thing I would say handball has in its favour is a coherent and consistent international set-up (which can mask a lot of issues, for e.g. the collapse of the domestic league in Spain in terms whilst Spain becomes successful internationally) - and a club competition structure that is fit for purpose.  Plus, to keep londonrlfan happy - in any territory where rights haven't been sold you can watch virtually any EHF match for free via either YouTube or EHFTV.

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