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Everything posted by Pyjamarama

  1. Trying not to pick the obvious players: Bruce Burton (Castleford) - late 70s. Green Vigo (Wigan) - circa 1977. Keith Fielding (Salford).
  2. Just had a look at the scores of Wigans matches at the time of the split from RU. What's remarkable is just how low scoring the games in the early days of the Northern Union were. As an example, Wigans first dozen games in the 1895/96 season: Broughton R. (a) 9-0 Liversage (a) 3-0 Wakefield T. (a) 9-13 Tyldesley (h) 0-0 Widnes (h) 3-0 Bradford (h) 0-0 Brighouse R. (a) 3-3 Manningham (a) 0-5 Rochdale H. (a) 0-0 Warrington (h) 9-0 Runcorn (h) 0-0 St Helens (a) 0-0 Five scoreless draws in the first 3 months of the season. An average of just under 5 points a game - & that's including the Wakefield 'points fest' of 9-13.
  3. I have unleashed my inner nerd & had a flick through a book I have entitled 'Wigan RLFC 1895/1986' by Ian Morrison. Post First World War up to 1986 I found 5 matches, including an almost unheard of scoreless draw & bizarrely a Yorkshire Cup tie. (The book states that the Lancashire Cup had been suspended during WW2 - hence Wigans entry into the Yorkshire Cup). 1925/26 v Leeds 0-5 1942/43 v Dewsbury 0-6 (Yorkshire Cup Semi Final 2nd Leg) 1951/52 v Barrow 0-9 1973/74 v Castleford 0-0 1978/79 v Castleford 0-18
  4. Re: Wigan. Wigan Athletics shirt colours from their 1932 foundation year until 1939 were red & white halves (the same as the Wigan Borough FC shirt worn in the early 1920s - Wigan Borough were members of the Football League & the previous occupants of Springfield Park until they went bust in 1931). The shirts were then red & white quarters until 1947 when they changed to blue & white. I vaguely remember being told that the reason they changed to blue & white was due to the club not being able to get hold of a new red & white kit due to supply difficulties after the war, & the only full kit that the could get hold of was a blue & white one. Exactly how true this is I don't know, but that's the story I remember being told years ago. Ironically, Wigan RLs original colours were blue & white hoops up to 1886 when they changed to cherry & white - the blue & white becoming the clubs secondary colours.
  5. Good news. Another step in the right direction for the international game. One point I've noticed though is that although the world governing body changed it's name to 'International Rugby League' some time ago, the websites address is still 'rlif.com'. Unless it's me being a bit dim about this & the website address isn't an easy thing to change, if you're going to change the name of the organisation surely it makes sense to change the website address as well.
  6. Totally agree that they need more support. Most of the games administrators want the game to spread & thrive in 'non-heartland' areas - until it comes down to putting sustained long term resources, finance & planning into it. You only have to look at the long list of failed 'non-heartland' clubs to realise this. I'm not sure how much support they are given by the RFL but the impression you get is that (as usual) WWR are left to just get on with it with very little help/support from the RFL or other pro clubs. It's like a gardener chucking a few seeds on a bit of poor quality wasteland & hoping to come back in 18 months time expecting Kew Gardens to have sprung up. Didn't the RFL have development officers operating in the South Wales area a few years ago, but the RFL scrapped the role? What about Wigans link up with WWR? That seems to have gone west. It's again just some examples of the complete lack of long term planning & support for any new 'non-heartland' club. What little support is offered seems to be amateurish off the cuff scraps here & there for 12 months or so.
  7. Not everyone is against you. There's a bloke in Eastbourne who likes you. (Only joking - apologies but I couldn't resist copying a line by the Major in Fawlty Towers). It's true that there's an element of RL fans that seem to dislike everything that TW do no matter what. But there are also a huge number of RL fans wholeheartedly willing you on & wishing you success. I've been following RL since I was 7 years old & I'm now in my 50s. For me the expansion of the game internationally at both club & country level is the most exiting thing to happen to the sport that I've seen. We cannot keep plodding on dying a slow death & becoming less & less relevant by just keeping to a handful of ex mining & cotton towns along the M62. Keep up the great work.
  8. A fair point. Anything that attracts more players/finance/clubs/coverage & spreads the game is fine by me. We just need to make sure we have thought about & addressed as many possible problems & pitfalls in advance so that they don't become an issue further down the line. As a slight aside, I've just noticed these two RL headlines fro the last couple of days: A headline in The Guardian - Red Star Belgrade plan to join New York and Ottawa in League 1. A headline from the Love Rugby League website - Salford Trio Loaned to Valencia. I wouldn't have dared to dream of ever seeing RL headlines like this. Fantastic.
  9. It's great news for the game that Red Star are planning to apply to join League 1. However, with the possibility Ottawa, Valencia, New York & Red Star all in League 1 at the same time surely it's a fair point that needs to be looked at? I presume that virtually all the existing League 1 club players are part time - many with regular full time jobs. Getting the required time off work to make 4 possible overseas trips a season may not be possible for many players. I'm certainly not saying that Red Star shouldn't be allowed to join - far from it. But real world logistical issues such as this need to be sorted out before we end up with a scenario where (for example) a New York home game is called off due to the away side not being able to raise enough players to travel.
  10. I 100% totally agree!! But it's the process of how we examine & possibly change the rules that is the issue. If another nation has an idea to make the rules better for everyone then absolutely great - lets have a look at it. Just lets have a means/platform whereby this can be examined by the game as a whole. I really don't see what the problem with this is. It just seems (to me) to be the logical thing to do - but I accept you have a different opinion. Anyway, I'm sure we both have the games best interests at heart. I'm going to sign off from this thread now before I get anymore hysterical & disingenuous?.
  11. If your argument is correct, this annual rule tinkering method should be encouraged throughout all the other RL nations. Every RL nation should be encouraged once a year to alter the rules solely to make the sport attractive to their own nation. The more sets of rules the better - what could possibly go wrong for a growing international sport? We could even have regional variations in the same country (introduce lineouts under Queensland rules, have 16 a side under Yorkshire rules). Why only do this once a year - bring in Easter rule tinkering as well. Consultation & communication should be avoided. The annual NRL rule changes are so successful that they feel compelled to change them again every 12 months. There may be a few other sports which have rule variations, but I suspect the vast majority don't. Even the ones that do surely don't feel the need to change them so frequently. Regardless of what other sports do, we need to consider what is best for our game. Each year our sport is being played in nations new to RL. So surely it is common sense to have a sensible unified global policy to play under one set of rules, and to retain some semblance of control on reviewing and implementing any rule changes for the benefit of the whole game & not just the NRL.
  12. I accept that the NRL is so powerful within the game that it can do what it wants & there is very little any other organisation can do about it. I also accept that the intentions of the NRL are to improve the game. Whether all the rule changes do so remains to be seen as there doesn't appear to have been any trial of these changes. However, as the game continues to grow internationally, I still think that individual RL nations having free reign to change the rules at will could cause problems further down the line of the sports development. To ignore the issue is possibly just storing up problems in the future. I know this is hypothetical, but what concerns me is that with the current set up, we could in theory in 10/15 years time have English RL rules, French RL rules, NZ RL rules, Serbian RL rules, Canadian RL rules etc...It then becomes take your pick as to which set of rules would any new RL playing nation adopt - or why not make your own up? In my opinion, it has the potential to make the sport look ridiculous. I just feel that a system needs to be in place whereby the sport is flexible enough to allow rule changes to be tried out & that all the IRL full members have an input. This input need not be equal (i.e. one vote per nation) but could be weighted so that the NRL has the largest number of votes - down to (for example) the newest/smallest nation having one vote - then at least there is some sort of democratic system in place that acknowledges the NRLs undoubted dominance, but at least gives everyone an input & hopefully avoids the 'pick your own rules' situation that we have at the moment. I also wonder if this may have any bearing on our application for GAISF. Maybe it's not something that the GAISF are that bothered about. However, if I were an organisation that wanted to find any way possible of trying to scupper RLs application of becoming a permanent GAISF member then I would certainly make sure that the GAISF were aware of the potential for a free for all concerning the sports rules - which demonstrates that the so called world governing body making the GAISF application is in fact no such thing.
  13. The problem is that virtually every area of the game is crying out for more finance. However, I would love to set up a property branch of the RFL whereby they start to invest & purchase pitches/clubhouses & so on throughout the country so that amateur clubs in non-traditional areas aren't having to rent RU/football grounds & have a more secure tenure, so that every penny generated by these clubs stays in the game.
  14. It looks like the NRL has again made a unilateral decision to alter some rules of the sport without consulting the rest of the RL playing nations or even the IRL. I accept that it's good practice to periodically review the laws of the game, but with the game continuing to grow internationally - & no longer restricted to just England, France, Australia, NZ, & PNG, surely this should now be undertaken by the IRL. The NRL should obviously have an input, but so should all other IRL full members. The problem with individual nations introducing their own rule changes is that it brings confusion to the rest of the RL nations as to which set of rules they now follow. It also sets a precedent for any of the 40 odd RL nations to do the same if they so wish - which (at least in theory) could lead to one change too many for some nations possibly resulting in a third code of rugby. I feel that the time has come whereby one of the rules of IRL membership should be to agree not to unilaterally make rule changes, and also agree that the IRL (with input from all full members) is the sole body responsible for making any rule changes.
  15. Yet it does seem odd that the "billion dollar business" that is the NRL struggles to spread it's wings beyond NSW & Queensland - but by comparison, in it's 14 years of existence from virtually nothing, the A League (the Aussie soccer league) has managed to establish clubs in 4 states & 2 countries - including clubs in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney, & Wellington - with plans for further expansion. Even to 'non experts' like myself it does suggest that there just isn't the will to try no matter what the size of any TV/sponsorship deals.
  16. I agree that some of the comments are out of order, & some of the questions could be worded less abruptly. However, I think the vast majority of the questions that focus on the sport are reasonable questions bearing in mind the leading positions in RL that he has held in the past, his current position as CEO of the IRL, the large amounts of salary & severance pay he has drawn from the game.
  17. I very rarely wear any merchandise to a game. Most club shirts these days are covered with adverts & you end up looking like a walking polyester billboard. I know that it's probably unrealistic for clubs to ditch all the shirt advertising & the annual shirt design changes due to the revenue it brings in, but ideally, I would love for clubs to return to wearing proper traditional cotton rugby shirts with perhaps a maximum of 2 advertising areas on each shirt.
  18. I completely understand the reasons for your comment. But the issue seems to be what do Wigan (or any club for that matter) do about the missing fans? Berating them on here may work, but I wouldn't hold my breath. My guess is that, although they'll have some interest in RL, they aren't as wrapped up in the game as the people who post on/read this site, & probably don't give a monkeys about the criticism anyway. It's a bit like Tesco slagging off ex-customers who now shop at Aldi.
  19. Many congrats to Salford. Your win was fully deserved. We were totally outplayed. Good luck next week - from a Wigan fan.
  20. In environmental debates, 'whataboutery' usually appears at some point (eg - anyone with a pro-environment opinion should be living in a cave, scooping drinking water out of a stream & eating grass - or something along those lines). I'm not sure how anyone can know the integrity & efforts of every single person or protester who voices concern at the state of the environment. No doubt there will be some who have done very little, but there will probably be some who have done more than most. If we accept 'whataboutery' as an argument to do nothing, then nothing can be deemed wrong as long as we can think of examples of poor environmental behaviour by anyone with a pro-environmental opinion.
  21. I think you are misinterpreting most peoples intentions on here. My guess is that virtually everyone on here is a genuine RL fan who wants the best for all our clubs - including Swinton. The effort and dedication of players, staff & fans of Swinton is without question & to be applauded. If Swinton grow and prosper by keep doing what they have been doing for the last 25 years then fine & good luck to you. But as a RL fan who wants to see the club successful, I just worry where the next generation of Swinton fans are going to come from. Will the youth of Swinton flock to Sale? Will the youth of Sale suddenly decide that it would be a great idea to start watching another towns team? Don't get me wrong, Just changing a name clearly isn't the answer to Swintons problems, however the name change may have just been the catalyst for long term positive change. The board of directors (most of whom appear to be genuine Swinton fans) who were the closest to the business side of the club have made it clear that in their opinion the club will struggle to continue long term by operating as it does at the moment. I genuinely hope I'm wrong & do wish Swinton all the best for the future in whatever path they chose to take.
  22. The club hasn't played in Swinton for approx 25 years. I can understand wanting to retain the Swinton name if there were realistic plans to move back into Swinton in the next few years, but lets face it, unless there's a closet billionaire Swinton fan lurking somewhere who decides to invest heavily in the club, the chances of them moving back into Swinton in another 25 years is currently virtually zero. How many years would they need to play outside Swinton to realise that being called Swinton doesn't really make sense anymore?
  23. Photo from the recent Radnicki Novi Beograd v Radnicki Nis Serbian league game. "Eyup lads, does my bum look big in this shirt?"
  24. Taken from an article in yesterdays Daily Mail: Rugby players are so 'determined to keep on playing' following 'tackle after tackle' they become addicted to painkillers, the head of a mental health charity revealed. Tony Adams, English football manager and founder of charity Sporting Chance, said rugby league players need so many painkillers to recover from each game they are becoming addicted. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6791861/Rugby-players-getting-hooked-Tramadol-warns-former-footballer-Tony-Adams.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 From memory, I think this has been reported before. Unless I've missed something, I haven't heard anything further about this from any RL authority- which suggests that either the powers that be are currently in the process of investigating this, or that there are no plans to investigate in the hope that the problem can be conveniently swept under the carpet. I do think that the sport must at least investigate whether there is a genuine problem. If the Daily Mail report is correct, this shouldn't be ignored by our sport. The game has a responsibility and duty of care to make sure that player welfare is the top priority. Also, it isn't exactly doing the sport any favours in retaining/attracting players. After reading articles like this, how many parents would want their sons/daughters aiming for a pro RL career? With clubs trying to cram as many games into a season as possible, & 'summer' rugby now starting in the middle of winter and finishing in autumn, I get the impression that clubs sometimes try to squeeze every £ out of the players at the expense of their welfare. We could ask why the players themselves don't take action to address this. Is it because the culture of players is one of not being seen to be weak, or fear of losing their place in the side & consequently affecting their income? For me, the least we should be aiming for as a start is the usual obvious ideas that have been mentioned before: - reduce the number of games clubs play in a regular season. - ensure that every player has at least 5/6 days rest between games. - if clubs insist on not reducing the number of games per season, at least limit the number of games (or minutes) that each player can play per season.
  25. Absolutely bang on, Saintspete. I don't think anyone is saying that players should only be allowed to tweet about RL, but, (using George Williams as an example) since Wigans first game against Saints on 31/1/19 he hasn't posted one single tweet mentioning RL. When you watch Match of the Day, every episode shows Twitter comments from players about that days game that they've played in. I seem to remember that one player got caught out supposedly Tweeting something that he couldn't possibly have written (I forget what it was now), & it turned out that it was his agent who posted all his 'official' football Tweets - but the point is that the folk who run football worked out ages ago that their sport can utilise things like Twitter as just one of their tools to generate/sustain interest in football. In comparison we seem to be miles behind and amateurish in exploiting this. This is about as low hanging fruit as you can pick in terms of it being relatively easy and inexpensive to fix to RLs advantage (each club have some social media training for it's players, and the SL/RFL to introduce a social media policy & procedures for players/coaches to follow). I presume that most of us on here won't be anywhere near experts in this sort of stuff, but even to us it just seems glaringly obvious & common sense. At times you really do wonder at the quality of some administrators/marketing/media staff we employ as a sport.
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