Super League clubs will meet on Wednesday to discuss, among other issues, whether the competition’s salary cap should be raised in a bid to increase and improve talent retention. It’s a big call, given how the cap hasn’t been raised for a number of years – with a fairly even split understood to be in place as to whether any raise should be made. But which way should the competition vote? Here’s some reasons why the cap should – and shouldn’t – be pushed up. Have your say as well below..
Should: It will help keep the competition’s best talent
Roger Draper has spoken openly and passionately about wanting to keep Super League’s best players – and he’s right to do so. It’s great to see someone in authority prioritising it, as the drain has started to increase – at least to the NRL – in recent years. Improving the wage ceiling will afford clubs the opportunity to tie down their best players for longer, with the added incentive of more money. That has to be a positive, surely.
Shouldn’t: The competition is more even than it’s ever been
Castleford top of Super League. Salford in the top four. Warrington at the foot of the table. Three things which underline just how utterly unpredictable the competition has become – in fact, it’s fair to say it’s the most even it’s ever been. So why change the cap now? If you do, you risk blowing out of the water all the hard work done to ensure all 12 teams can beat one another on their day. Some would argue that upping the cap would hand the richer clubs the chance to pull away from the rest again. Is that healthy?
Should: Super League could go after players from other codes and other sports
As well as suffering a player drain in recent years, Super League clubs have generally been unable to pull off what general sports fans would call marquee coups for rugby league. Big-name players from Australia, huge rugby union stars and calibre of talent the sport was accustomed to bringing in way back when. Those days are long gone – or are they? Would allowing the clubs who can splash the cash the opportunity to target big names see a change in those fortunes? It’s not impossible, you feel: and those who are in favour of the salary cap being increased may cite this is as a key reason for doing so.
Shouldn’t: The best players will all end up at the elite clubs
You could pick a handful of players from almost every Super League club these days who would get into almost every other team in the competition. The resurgence of Wakefield are a fine example: who wouldn’t want Tom Johnstone in their side? If the cap is raised to such a degree where it’s possible for the richer clubs to cherry-pick the top talent, you could see an internal player drain of sorts: would that be of benefit for the competition? It’s clearly a difficult decision to make.
Now you have your say..