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Toby Chopra

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Toby Chopra last won the day on October 2 2019

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  1. Unless someone can point to evidence otherwise, I'm afraid this is the likely reality. NY has always been less than the sum of its (very limited) parts. Ottawa has always seemed the more substantial bid.
  2. No, I said they should come in all together in round 4/5.
  3. What I mean is, I don't think the SL Clubs really care if they win the cup or not, they just don't want to have to commit to too many games, in an already overlong season. (yes, which they themselves put in place!)
  4. Remember in, say, the FA cup this is what happens too. The top clubs only come in once hundreds of of non-league and even pro L1 and L2 teams have whittled themselves down from around 400 teams to 20. And football has greater strength in depth, and fewer safety issues. I think the Challenge Cup broadly has it right, the only change I'd like to see is all 12 SL clubs coming in in the last 32. I think people are mistaken if they think the current draw structure is about protecting SL clubs - I don't think they care about that, it's simply about reducing the number of games the top clubs have to play.
  5. Where have you seen this? This has never been the case in the past.
  6. Do the BBC main channel games start in this round?
  7. At the moment it's just 'Tottenham Hotspur Stadium' because Spurs are playing hardball on selling the naming rights. When they finally agree a deal the sponsor will take the whole name of the stadium. A bit sad for someone like me who grew up watching games on The Shelf that no reference to White Hart Lane will be left - for instance Liverpool and Man Utd will never fully remove Anfield/OT from the name, even if a sponsors name is added. But also like me, most Spurs fans are willing to live with it because the stadium truly has to be seen to be believed. It's just awesome we're going to have an Ashes test there.
  8. Which ones? I don't buy it. If a team made up union players can easily play league then it would have been done before. Its never worked, not because they aren't decent sportsmen, but because they're different sports.
  9. In that scenario, I wouldn't be surprised at all to see the championship/L1 clubs chopping off some of the more distant expansion clubs due to the travel costs. Which would be ironic given the song and dance regularly made about keeping open the door to superleague for 'ambitious' clubs.
  10. Is the NYC proposal to use US players and youngsters in L1? If so they'll make West Wales Raiders look competitive...
  11. There's no real incentive for SL to deviate at this point in time. They got full control of their competition and the majority of revenues, and even they can see that there's very little net benefit to them at this point in time of ringfencing, or stopping all payments to the lower leagues. 3 or 4 years down the line, who knows? But that's an argument for the future, there's nothing to see now, so each tier need to be cracking on with making their own competitions work, while EVERYONE should be thinking about what their part is in making the 2021 World Cup a success.
  12. The September 2018 "peace deal" resolved these issues at least through the next TV contract. P&R will be maintained as will a distribution of TV money. The SL clubs will remain part of the RFL structure and the next TV deal will be concluded under the auspices of the governing body. The price the Ch/L1 clubs had to pay for this was to accept that the SL would keep the lion's share of any additional revenues in an increased TV deal, or that SL would keep a bigger share of a reduced deal. And SL would have full operational control of their competition. Let's not create division where there is none. https://www.rugby-league.com/article/53429/a-new-agreement-for-rugby-league
  13. Good question. It's not a serious proposal if you ask me. It'll be more akin to rounding up a bunch of semi-pro ringers for an exhibition match. Frankly if they want to promote rugby league ahead of joining L1 a year later, they'd be better off getting the Wolfpack to play one of their loop games in NY. At least it would be a proper contest between two teams with top division professional players.
  14. Again, I'd question your headline number of 35 mln being sent overseas. Put like that, it sound like an obviously barmy thing to do. But as before, I don't think the bald number tells us much. We have to do the cost/benenfit analysis each time. For instance, I wouldn't say Cats are a failure in terms of commercial benefit. In return for 1.8 million, Cats give us a financially strong SL club that can pay full cap with marquee players and (until this year) 13 extra live games to indirectly boost the value of the Sky deal, and keep us on British TVs. I'd suggest that there are currently no alternative British clubs that could deliver that outcome, even with a SL place and 1.8mln. None of the recently relegated SL clubs could. We shouldn't be looking at how much we can make from them, but be thankful they bring us one more financially strong club in a completion with a number of borderline basketcases. That said, the lack of a TV deal is a big negative for Cats and their value is a lot lower without it. I expect were approaching the point that further overseas team - without expansion or a TV deal - would be a a net negative. For sure, SLE should make the decision on a place, and on distribution. But I hope they consider all the factors, costs and benefits in such decisions. Elstone has been worryingly narrow in his assessment in my view, and I think he fails to fully see how his competition benefits from the overseas clubs we have now.
  15. I get your logic here Dave, and I certainly don't subscribe to the view that all expansion is inherently good. But I'm not sure we can so neatly divide money as being "invested in Canada" and "invested in the UK", and especially not neatly put the price tag on it that you do. When investment is hopefully generating returns, we also should consider where those returns are accruing. For instance, the vast majority of the TV money is spent on players' wages, and it's basically the same predominantly UK players whichever team is in SL. That won't change for years, if ever, so the pathway for British players to turn pro remains in place even with a foreign team. And after allowing him a team in Canada, the TWP's rich owner has stumped up to sign one of the world's biggest rugby players. Is that investment in Canada? Not to me, the vast benefit of that signing has been to boost the profile of British Rugby league. In fact the two RL biggest headlines this off season in British media have been due to overseas clubs. To work out the cost of giving the TWP a TV share, you have to work out the cost/benefits of the alternatives. Option A, would be SL would lose their unexpected freebie marketing budget. But would David Argyle just pocket the money? I doubt it. Perhaps he'd fund the coverage of more live games, benefitting us all. Option B, would be he pulls the plug. Which means a team like Fev or London ends up in SL, with fewer, cheaper Pro contacts overall, definitely no SBW, and fewer televised games. There might be a marginal boost in profile in those local areas, but it certainly didn't add up to much in London last year. There's loads of ways we could try to measure it, but giving TWP their TV money definitely doesn't equate to investing 1.8 mln in Canada.
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