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Martyn Sadler

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Everything posted by Martyn Sadler

  1. But creating ten new teams, and a new league, was regarded as a foolish gamble by many. It illustrates the general point that the more teams involved in a league tends towards greater success.
  2. In 1959 there were twelve teams in the NFL. Today there are 32. The quality today is immeasurably higher than it was in 1959. And the NFL generates more than a thousand times as much broadcasting and commercial income than it did in 1959.
  3. If we keep doing the same thing over and over, we won't expand our revenues. They are far more likely to decline. What I think the game needs is a strategic vision that recognises the need to expand and gives a pathway whereby it is possible to do it. My view is that in the long term a league of only twelve clubs will gradually lose its appeal. The A-League in Australia has discovered that. Ultimately I think that 16 clubs is probably the minimum number needed to avoid that problem. That doesn't mean there should be 30 fixtures. A league could be Conference based and would benefit by being so.
  4. If we are going to boost our broadcasting income, then we have to give the impression that we are a sport that is on an upward curve. To have twelve teams in Super League in perpetuity, with perhaps two teams relegated and promoted in yo-yo fashion every other year, is extremely negative and is ultimately quite a turnoff for potential viewers. To be able to incorporate successful clubs into Super League, regardless of where they come from, would boost our profile and ultimately our income. The fact that the existing clubs in Super League might have the power to veto such a move is part of the problem that faces Rugby League.
  5. What affects the playing standard more than anything is the quality of coaching at the clubs, which isn't determined by the number of clubs. What's crucial is the entertainment value and I don't think that is determined by the standard, but by the closeness of the competition and of individual matches. I don't think that's related to how many teams are in Super League.
  6. Although promotion and relegation are usually thought of as two sides of the same coin, I would separate them. I think relegation can be immensely damaging, not just to the club relegated, but to the competition as a whole, depending on which club gets the chop. Promotion, on the other hand, can be highly motivating, exciting and encourages greater support for all the clubs in a promotion race. My ideal would be a Championship that gave the prospect of promotion to its clubs into Super League as long as they satisfied certain criteria, which wouldn't be set at an unattainable standard. If they won their Grand Final they could then join Super League, which would expand by one club. Ultimately Super League would expand in an organic way.
  7. Some of the more successful football competitions in the world have no promotion or relegation, including the NFL and the AFL. Promotion and relegation tends to weaken competitions, not strengthen them. The point about expansion is that it should be expanding the TV audience and thereby making it more valuable, which is why the AFL expanded into Sydney many years ago. Although the TV audience for AFL in Sydney isn't large, it still contributes massively to the overall value of the broadcast rights for that competition.
  8. If you want to get rid of the Sharks you'd get tremendous support from the A-League football authorities, who would base a team in Shark Park with the aim of converting the Shire to their sport. And I'm sure they would succeed. There's a very good argument for bringing Perth into the NRL, but it has nothing to do with relocating a club from Sydney. It's like saying that there are too many football clubs in London.
  9. I went to watch the Bears at the North Sydney Oval in 1997 and there were 15,000 people there, in one of the more prosperous parts of the city. After their club was thrown out of the NRL, most of those people began watching other sports, particularly AFL. Sydney isn't a single city, but a conurbation of many different districts, which differ greatly from each other. Rugby League should try to win the North Shore back. Bringing back the Bears would be a great start.
  10. I would like to investigate the viability of bringing back the Bears and giving them two homes - North Sydney Oval and Central Coast Stadium. I also think there is scope for Rugby League to expand to Perth, Adelaide and several NZ cities in the long term.
  11. Sydney Swans, GWS Giants, Sydney FC, Western Sydney Wanderers and NSW Waratahs. Because I'm a one-sport man. And any suggestion that Rugby League clubs in Sydney should be closed down, merged or moved out of Sydney is absolutely ludicrous. I was in Sydney when the announcement to effectively close down North Sydney was made, and Rugby League effectively lost a whole swathe of support on the North Shore from that point onwards. It can't afford to do that again.
  12. I'll admit now that I think Sydney has five clubs that I would be happy to see disappear from the city.
  13. I like the joke but it is a bit harsh. Wait for the dry grounds.
  14. The NBA has suspended its season after a Utah Jazz player tested positive for the coronavirus. And in Australia Tom Hanks is a victim. It only seems a matter of time to me before a Rugby League player goes down with the virus. And from that point onwards we can say goodbye to the 2020 season, at least for the time being.
  15. Amateur players expect to play in front of very small crowds, so the atmosphere of a small crowd for them is normal. Super League players expect to play in front of sizeable, noisy crowds. So the contrast is almost certain to feel eerie to them.
  16. I give some advice to the Rugby League bodies on the contingency plans they should have in place to respond to the coronavirus. https://www.totalrl.com/closing-the-doors-but-playing-the-game/
  17. I wasn't "trying" to do anything. What I said was that the statistics showed deaths from the coronavirus that included cases where the deceased had another medical condition that contributed to their death, which seems to be the case for virtually all the deaths announced so far in the United Kingdom. What I would like to see is some statistics for people who have died from the coronavirus and nothing else. That would give us more insight into whether the virus is a genuine danger to life in itself, or only when it is contracted by someone with an existing condition.
  18. I agree with all but your last paragraph. Statistics are statistics, and (assuming they are compiled accurately), are neither "artificially" high or low, but they are open to interpretation. Earlier I quoted the Deputy Medical Officer of Health saying that 99 per cent of people who get the virus "will almost certainly get better". Would you accuse her of encouraging complacency?
  19. I'm sorry if I misinterpreted what you wrote, but it appeared to me that you were suggesting that 10.5% of the UK population of 8.7 million people aged 70 or over would potentially die from the virus if we followed the trend you identified in the rest of the world. If you had said in your earlier post that these were the numbers that should feel nervous, then I would have agreed with you. I'm perfectly happy to concede that we all feel nervous (and I'm assuming I'm not misunderstanding you by including you within the "we").
  20. So your approach is to project the statistics to predict the worst of all possible outcomes. You're right that the CMO is saying it will get worse, which is indisputable. But the question is how much worse. To quote Dr Jenny Harries, the Deputy Chief Medical Officer, speaking to Sky News: "We will have significant numbers in a way which I think the country is not used to. So, large numbers of the population will become infected [with coronavirus] but because it's a naive population, nobody has got antibodies to this virus currently. "Having said that, 99% of those will almost certainly get better and most people will have a really quite mild disease and will not need to be in hospital. [They] can be managed very safely and appropriately at home. "The important thing for us is to make sure that we manage those infections and make sure that those individuals who are most affected - our elderly people, particularly those with chronic underlying conditions - get in touch and get treatment, and that we support other people in the home environment."
  21. And you specifically said, in response, "No. EVERYONE needs to take care", implying that I had suggested that not everyone does. I agree with you that we all need to treat this as a potentially deadly disease. But when you know that you have a condition that could be fatal if you contract the disease, then you will inevitably take the maximum possible care as you see it, going well beyond what the Chief Medical Officer recommends for the rest of us.
  22. It gets slightly annoying to have my posts continually misinterpreted. I obviously haven't said that we don't all need to take care, nor that we shouldn't give a damn if we catch it. Clearly we do and we should, and I'm far more conscious of that than most people, because we have a family friend who is particularly vulnerable with a specific medical condition that lowers her resistance to this and other viruses. In any emergency I would hope that she would be ahead of the queue for treatment as opposed to someone who is otherwise young, fit and healthy.
  23. The numbers will be significant but, in this country at least, I'm not sure the number of people whose lives are in danger extends to "millions and millions". As I've said, I'm more inclined to listen to what the Chief Medical Officer has to say about the virus than speculate about how many people could get the virus, as opposed to seeking out factual evidence about how many people are known to have caught it and how many have actually died from it.
  24. The point I was trying to illustrate quite clearly was that the vast majority of people who contract the virus are likely to survive it. That doesn't mean that we should be complacent about it - far from it. We should all take the precautions suggested by the Chief Medical Officer. But the people who need to take the greatest care are the elderly and those with other conditions that might have reduced their capacity to recover from the virus.
  25. You need to learn to read more carefully. I didn't say anything should be "glibly ignored". Italy's death rate may or may not be lower than 5.4%, depending on the proportion of the population that has been tested for the virus. But you are right to point out that Italy has a higher proportion of older people, who are naturally in more danger from this virus, which we all accept.
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