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  1. They still played under RU rules in 1895, and the fact remains that Canadian rugby football had the first form of play-the-ball, the first sin-bin rule, was the first to eliminate fair catches, throw-ins, rucks and mauls, and the first to incentivize teams to run kicks back out of their goal area rather than just make the ball dead. Those things are what distinguish RL from RU and they're all Canadian inventions. You can maintain that the same hapless administrators who consistently failed to expand the game's footprint beyond its heartlands came up with the equivalent things all by themselves if you want to, but seriously who can believe that? With the documented facts of a Canadian rugby team touring the UK prior to any of those changes coming into RL and a number of former Northern Union players having moved over to Canada and playing here, those facts strongly suggest that RL administrators had either seen or heard about the Canadian innovations and adopted them.
  2. Sort of. The likes of Toronto, Toulouse and New York should be in a separate league of their own where they could all draw much more than 5,000.
  3. In that case Toulouse needs a roster of opponents who'll be a draw card for Toulousains so they get much better crowds than that.
  4. In a manner of speaking, yes. To all intents and purposes RL is an improved version of Canadian rugby football as it was played when the Grey Cup was inaugurated, at which time it was played as you can see in this clip except that in the 1909 rules the ball was played by the middle three forward players linking arms as though about to pack down in a scrum and the middle one of those three heeling it back.
  5. A tiny island country with less population than Ottawa has a lot to offer? What planet do you live on?
  6. Nothing, they can add a colourful dimension at times like the Jamaican bobsleigh team did at the Winter Olympics in Calgary in 1988, but that's as much as they can do for any sport.
  7. You might think it doesn't but RL's detractors won't think so. They'd see the prevalence of small island countries in the top eight of a world cup as a sign of the sport's weakness even if their teams weren't full of heritage players and they'd be right.
  8. Croatia and Uruguay are both much bigger countries than Fiji, and their success in other sports has indeed been earned, earned by playing and beating a number of teams representing even bigger countries, though only occasionally. The same can't really be said of Fiji in RL though.
  9. I sure hope not. Having a team representing such a tiny country in the World Cup Final would highlight the sport's embarrassingly small footprint in the world.
  10. Then the game needs a league which could get (or build toward getting) 3-4 times what SL gets now even if that could only from having several broadcasters as partners rather than just one, doesn't it.
  11. How do you know they haven't tried to increase their revenue streams but not been able to do that? How would you suggest that clubs whose management worries (as they evidently do considering that "no away fans" was a concern they had about Toronto being included) about how many "away fans" will come and spend money in their stadium every season go about doing it and would they listen?
  12. The issue there is the same as with Marwan Koukash's proposed Liverpool club: how can they overcome the lack of awareness/disinterest/negative views about the game in their target market? What high profile star players are there in the game now who could help with that, and what opponents are available for them to play who could help with it?
  13. As Ray French said then, it needed to be a top club complete with repatriated Welsh players. It could have worked that way, but RL administrators have always been too shortsighted to things in the right way.
  14. In a league full of teams located in comparably big name cities it could work. That's probably the only way it could work too.
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