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17 stone giant

Six Nations in Northern Hemisphere

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Six nations in northern hemisphere.

Two groups of three. Each team plays once against the other two teams in the group:

Group A - England, Australia, Papua New Guinea (all matches played in England)

Group B - France, New Zealand, Tonga (all matches played in France)

Sat 1 Nov - England v Australia (London)

Sun 2 Nov - France v New Zealand (e.g. at Catalan Dragons)

Wed 5 Nov - Australia v PNG

Thu 6 Nov - New Zealand v Tonga

Sat 8 Nov - England v PNG

Sun 9 Nov - France v Tonga (e.g. at Toulouse)

Predicted results would give following positions after group stage:

Group A - 1st Australia, 2nd England, 3rd PNG

Group B - 1st New Zealand, 2nd Tonga, 3rd France

Knockout stage

Thu 13 Nov - 5th Place playoff: 3rd Group A v 3rd Group B - France v PNG (played in France)

Sat 15 Nov - Semi Final 1: 1st Group A v 2nd Group B - Australia v Tonga (played in France)

Sun 16 Nov - Semi Final 2: 1st Group B v 2nd Group A - New Zealand v England (played in England)

Sat 22 Nov - 3rd place playoff: Tonga v New Zealand / Final: England v Australia (double header played at Old Trafford)

Notes

1) Decided to play Semi Final 1 in France, just in case France managed to reach semi final

2) England will always play Semi Final in England, irrespective of whether they finish 1st or 2nd in group

3) Not sure if there's any need for a 5th place playoff, but put one in anyway

4) Decided to make the final/3rd place play off a double header, so that England will always be playing in one of the matches. This mean they can book Old Trafford.

5) Using my suggested dates, it works out as 11 matches being played on 10 different days. The tournament starts on Sat 1st November and ends on Sat 22nd November, so lasts 22 days in total, covering four weekends. 8 matches are at weekend, 3 matches midweek. 6 matches in England, 5 matches in France. Each team will play 3 or 4 matches, depending on how far they progress. Also means teams play at least three different opponents. I have scheduled some midweek matches to shorten the overall length of the tournament.

6) I think I have a nice mix of teams. Only a minor thing, but each team has a different recognised primary shirt colour, which I think adds to the look of the tournament - England white, Australia green, New Zealand black, Tonga red, France blue, PNG yellow.

7) I thought by having semi finals, 3rd place playoff, final, it helps with the marketing because it gives you something to refer the game as. It's not just England v New Zealand, it's Six Nations Semi-Final England v New Zealand. It gives the tournament some structure that hopefully casual fans can relate to.

8 ) Obviously this is just a fun idea. I don't know how realistic it is for many reasons. Do I have too many games? Or too many games in a short period of time? Or too many games in France? Or not the right six teams? Or is it impossible to fund the likes of PNG and Tonga coming over? I don't know the answer to any of these things.

Any thoughts welcome. Or any questions, if I haven't been clear about something. Thanks.

 

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I like the idea of that but I probably wouldn't have a 5th place play off.

If we wanted to give them an extra game the bottom 2 could maybe play a standalone test against Wales and Ireland at the end.

I think this type of tournament should be played once per WC cycle alternating between hemispheres.

The other two years would be Eng Vs NZ and Eng Vs Aus test series.

Throw in some mid season tests and we've got an international structure for the top nations

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7 hours ago, Number 16 said:

Sheer lunacy.

Why? This is pretty much the intercontinental cup that was in the planning until the Aussies got cold feet (as usual) 

Edited by Toby Chopra

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I think we need a 2nd major international comp like this or a 4 nations though. If the Aussies don’t want it just go on without them

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2 hours ago, Mr Plow said:

I think we need a 2nd major international comp like this or a 4 nations though. If the Aussies don’t want it just go on without them

Yep. Four nations. England, France, any of 2 of NZ, Tonga, Fiji, Samoa, PNG and if we can only get one of them to come, add whichever of the Celtic nations is strongest to the mix.

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If we're going to arrange a Four Nations, it needs to be Australia, England, New Zealand and Tonga. And we should strike while the iron's hot and arrange it now.

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2 hours ago, Mr Plow said:

I think we need a 2nd major international comp like this or a 4 nations though. If the Aussies don’t want it just go on without them

i think we definitely need a secondary international comp but we have to be careful it doesnt overshadow the WC. I think that would be a risk with an England, Australia, NZ, Tonga, fiji comp.

Ive said before my preference would be a Europe v Pacific ryder cup style competition

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a six nations every 2 years would be ideal,  if the insular Aussies are not interested  then forget them,

a regular international tournament is the way to go and if it really takes off then go to a a yearly one,

England ,France  ,NZ.  Tonga, PNG and Fiji to start with, then whoever finishes  bottom of the league has to have a play off against the next highest ranked nation to fill the 6th spot,

 

Edited by owls
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10 hours ago, Number 16 said:

Sheer lunacy.

I'm surprised that you say that, because I actually tried to come up with something that I hoped wasn't too demanding or fanciful. I actually thought it was quite modest and unambitious really. A maximum of four games for each team.

People talk about the lack of international matches, and they also talk about not wanting to play the same small number of teams, over and again. How else can you resolve these things?

I can only speak as a casual fan, but I'd much rather occasionally have a tournament like what I proposed, than play a series against New Zealand every other year. I don't think it's realistic for England to play a home series against a team like Tonga or PNG, so how else can we play them in England occasionally, except in a tournament along the lines of what I described? One off games just don't have any meaning to them.

I did say that I was open to suggestions and ideas for changes and improvements. I note that you didn't offer any alternative suggestions. Do you have anything constructive to say, rather than just labelling things as "sheer lunacy"?

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29 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

Ive said before my preference would be a Europe v Pacific ryder cup style competition

Scotchy, can you explain more what you mean by that, please?

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Bring back the Four Nations without the Aussies. If they wanna take part, they'll have to qualify. They can't just pick and choose and we can't just wait for them in order to plan the international game.

Would have loved to have seen it expanded to 5 Nations with the Big3 + 1 NH and 1 SH qualifier every year, but because the Aussies are so flakey it just can't happen.

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43 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

i think we definitely need a secondary international comp but we have to be careful it doesnt overshadow the WC.

Yes, I was aware of that when I was coming up with my suggestion, but it's a difficult balance. I did check in advance and the 2017 World Cup involved 14 teams, playing 28 matches, whereas my suggestion involved 6 teams, playing 11 matches. I hoped that this would be enough of a difference for it not to overshadow the world cup, while at the same time including teams that have reasonable numbers of supporters.

 

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I feel union shows us the way here. Have a tournament that is annual or bi annual with teams from nations who offer money as well as playing ability. 

Given Rugby League is not played in many places to a high standard, England France Australia and New Zealand should be the 4 Nations in question. Supporting France will do more for RL than any of the Pacific Islands as ultimately they are still part of the same market of Australia or NZ not a new one. The Islands while great players can't add money to the pot. Just look at when The ABs played Samoa in Samoa it lost them alot of money and further the Knights tour while a great thing and something I hope we do more of will have lost not made money in all likelihood. 

I would be for having the 4N with the above 4 and then giving Tonga regular games, same with Samoa, PNG and Fiji.

A Pacific cup based out of Auckland could work well for the Islands with the winner getting a game v NZ during origin.. 

It doesn't matter if France loose alot. Look at Italy in Union... Yes they loose alot but they bring money. In our terms in RL its France. 

Given 10 years of this I can see them being very competitive at home. 

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17 minutes ago, Southerner80 said:

I feel union shows us the way here. Have a tournament that is annual or bi annual with teams from nations who offer money as well as playing ability.

I was wanting my proposal to be played every two years, alternating between northern and southern hemispheres (so, every four years in the north). I chose PNG and Tonga partly for that reason - because they do have good support at home. I thought that this would help with the money side of things, at least when it was held in the south.

19 minutes ago, Southerner80 said:

Given Rugby League is not played in many places to a high standard, England France Australia and New Zealand should be the 4 Nations in question.

I'd accept that, and would hope that it would be played regularly in both hemispheres. The reason I expanded it to six was to try and include some variety, as well as adding some teams that France might be able to beat. But if having six teams is too ambitious, then let's go with just the four. I've said before that France are the only team that I think are realistically capable of eventually challenging the top three. I'd be more than happy if the RFL helped partially fund France for the southern hemisphere tournaments, if that made the difference between them being able to play or not.

26 minutes ago, Southerner80 said:

Look at Italy in Union... Yes they loose alot but they bring money.

Italy have been a great addition to the RU five nations (now six nations). I think they will continue to improve, and they're getting some good crowds nowadays, and not just due to visiting fans either. They play in Rome and at the Olympic Stadium, so that in itself makes for a great occasion. They're being supported by the RU 'family' too - Australia and New Zealand are playing them in Rome in the next couple of weeks. When you've got the biggest and best teams in the world willing to go and play there, things are only going to improve for Italy.

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4 hours ago, Oliver Clothesoff said:

Coming up with different formats of competitions isn’t going to suddenly make the Australians interested. 

Yeah, this is the crux of the issue. Unless the Aussies buy in competitions like this are just fantasy.

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3 minutes ago, Damien said:

Yeah, this is the crux of the issue. Unless the Aussies buy in competitions like this are just fantasy.

I can understand that. I'm not one of those that thinks you can do things without the Aussies - they're central to making international rugby league a success.

Maybe we should just remain silent and wait for the Aussies to make the suggestions. If what they suggest suits us, we can do it. If it doesn't, then we'll make our own plans for that year, and then repeat the process for the following year.

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State of Origin is the be all and end all for the Aussie Players and fans. 

It's up to England, New Zealand, PNG and France to change that...

The Aussies are happy with SOO and an Anzac/trans-tasman test or 2 keeps their NZ based NRL & SOO fans happy.

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2 minutes ago, Smudger06 said:

State of Origin is the be all and end all for the Aussie Players and fans. 

It's up to England, New Zealand, PNG and France to change that...

The Aussies are happy with SOO and an Anzac/trans-tasman test or 2 keeps their NZ based NRL & SOO fans happy.

Then it's up to us to host them in an Ashes series, fill three large stadiums and make them into major occasions, so that they go home thinking that it was a good experience and something they want to repeat again in future.

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If we paid them something close to half of their state of origin wages, they'd come....otherwise, yes, we'd have to make it worth the ARLC sending them by guaranteed big events. 

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1 hour ago, 17 stone giant said:

Scotchy, can you explain more what you mean by that, please?

Something along the lines of

Take France, England, Ireland, Wales, Italy and NZ, Fiji, Tonga, PNG and Samoa. Team Europe v Team Pacific.

Weekend 1 a 9s comp, each team plays 5 games against the nations in the other team. The winner of each game gets 1pt for their team.

Week 2, 5 games between nations, again the winner of each wins 1pt for their team. Plus 1 game between Team Europe and Team Pacific.

Week 3 repeat of week 2 with different nations playing

week 4 the same.

Winner is the team with the most points after week 4.

That would be the basic idea.

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1 hour ago, 17 stone giant said:

Yes, I was aware of that when I was coming up with my suggestion, but it's a difficult balance. I did check in advance and the 2017 World Cup involved 14 teams, playing 28 matches, whereas my suggestion involved 6 teams, playing 11 matches. I hoped that this would be enough of a difference for it not to overshadow the world cup, while at the same time including teams that have reasonable numbers of supporters.

 

I think my worry would be that the secondary competition becomes a more intense version of the WC, i.e a WC with only the good teams, this might project an image of the 2nd tier sides participation in the WC as a bit extraneous.

I loved the tri-nations, but it would be a bit of an issue if we brought it back. Even the 4 nations was looked at as 3 nations and a space filler.

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12 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

Something along the lines of

Take France, England, Ireland, Wales, Italy and NZ, Fiji, Tonga, PNG and Samoa. Team Europe v Team Pacific.

Weekend 1 a 9s comp, each team plays 5 games against the nations in the other team. The winner of each game gets 1pt for their team.

Week 2, 5 games between nations, again the winner of each wins 1pt for their team. Plus 1 game between Team Europe and Team Pacific.

Week 3 repeat of week 2 with different nations playing

week 4 the same.

Winner is the team with the most points after week 4.

That would be the basic idea.

It's certainly and interesting and creative idea. I've never watched a 9's match so I don't know if I'd like it or not. I'm not much of a fan of the 7's in rugby union - I find it much too open - a couple of passes and a speedster just runs through for an easy try. I think they have now scrapped the proposed 9's world cup in 2019, because otherwise I would have given that a watch and seen what I thought of it.

So, is it 13-a-side matches for weeks 2 to 4? Wouldn't that mean you played only three out of the five teams in the rival team? And who is playing for Team Europe and Team Pacific, if all the players are already playing for individual nations? I'm maybe not understanding correctly.

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