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Toby Chopra

Coach
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Everything posted by Toby Chopra

  1. No other sport is doing this. This rugby league exceptionalism needs to stop. The game needs to just get a grip, be thankful it's survived a global economic catastrophe well enough to have a season in 2021, and move on.
  2. Did you miss the lethal global pandemic which unleashed the biggest health and economic shock since the Second World War? Honestly, the lengths some people in rugby league go to have a moan is just mindboggling
  3. Superleague clubs are still full members of the RFL, you're making a distinction that doesn't work. SL has operational independence for its competition, that's all.
  4. Spot on. I understand the concerns about the future structure but people really need to detach the two - this is the biggest disruption to organised sport since the wartime leagues of the 1940s, and it's been clear from day 1 that normal service couldn't be resumed. Time to move on, and if that includes the lion's share of the extra funds going to Beaumont and Hughes, that's fine too. I argued for this early on as the RFL has everyone's business plan and know what's been comitted. Let's just enjoy seeing English rugby league back on the field this autumn, and then let's make 2021 the best season ever, capped off with a world cup. I'm hopeful!
  5. Do the RFL know who the investors are, surely that's all that matters? They knew about David Argyle before his name was made public.
  6. Agree on your overall point - the new owners wouldn't have the same debt burden so the stadium could easily be profitable. But unsure why you say Wigan RL lose money on the stadium at the moment. If they're paying 10% of ticket revenues to hire the stadium they make a huge profit on match days, even without the non ticket revenues - the question is is there a model where they can make even more than currently by owning/controlling their own stadium.
  7. Is it a disaster scenario though in the current circumstances? If half the league goes into administration due to an extraordinary society wide event, then it doesn't matter quite as much as league rules will be adjusted, councils will protect assets from redevelopment (like at Wigan) and teams will reform. The current owners may lose money, but many of the losses will be socialised and the sporting penalties will be waived, or will be so widespread that their relative affect will be much weaker. Sport will go on if there is demand for it, which there is. There's safety in numbers going into administration right now, and the same will apply to rugby league. Maybe not *every* rugby league or football club will be playing in exactly the same competition they are now after it has all shaken out, but the vast majority will be, even if they go into administration.
  8. To be fair Rowley would be a good hire too. He's the only head coach other than BMac who knows what it takes to manage a transatlantic rugby team. Whatever his other limitations, you can't buy that sort of experience.
  9. With everything that is going on I find it astonishing that the Ottawa bid is still going forward. As things stand professional sport and international travel is still banned in Ontario. But it seems it is indeed going ahead, and this would be a great hire for all the reasons mentioned.
  10. I'd be surprised if it held up in court. A rule cooked up by businesses in an industry that restricts an out-of-contract individual's freedom to sign a new contract is just asking to be struck down.
  11. He's only going to get a pay upgrade in the NRL, but unless they're going to receive some sort of compensation, I shocked Canberra would release him to a rival club. I wonder if its more than just money, and we'll see him back in England next year for family reasons.
  12. There's not remotely a financial basis for Ch and L1 to come back this year. I expect the RFL are doing due diligence on the costs of resuming and waiting for their committees to report. Then they have a paper trail for a fair and reasoned decision if someone tries to sue them when the plug on the season is pulled.
  13. It's not neutral venues though, in a fair competition sense. It's single, COVID-secure venues in a practical, health sense. Sporting neutrality doesn't come into it.
  14. From a rugby perspective it makes sense. From a financial perspective, clubs already had to pay £280k each back to Sky for a shortened season this year, I doubt they can afford to do it again. Plus, do we really want to mess Sky around during the contract renegotiation year? World Cup is of course important. New TV deal is even more so.
  15. There will still likely be a capacity reduction enforced on stadiums to ensure 1m distancing, maybe 50%. That's fine for Hudds and Salford, they'll still be able to get their regular crowd in safely. But Wakey are already at capacity at 5,000ish, are they not? They might have to turn people away. This could be a moot point though because as others have said, it's unlikely everyone will want to attend, even if they can.
  16. Feel free to correct my very ropey French, but doesn't the Ministry of Sport announcement say that pro team training is allowed from Monday? Should be time enough for a mid-August Superleague restart. Only issue left is quarantine laws for UK teams flying in and out
  17. Crowds of up to 5,000 allowed in French sport stadiums from July 11, with a review on higher numbers to follow. With the two governments working on plans for an "air bridge" between the countries for tourism purposes, it may well be that Catalans can play at home this season after all. The prospects for a meaningful SL season look in a lot better shape than they did only a few weeks ago. Maybe even Championship and L1 too, if our government follows suit by the Autumn. https://twitter.com/DragonsOfficiel/status/1274266436157026304?s=20
  18. Criteria for British citizenship is mother (or father) not grandmother.
  19. Hmm, I think you're setting very low expectations for him there, he's not a child. When I heard him speak he was very eloquent. He might have a gruff voice and thick accent but there's a very sharp mind in there. You also don't need to be an Oxford professor of English to be able to speak clearly. Millions of perfectly ordinary people can speak the words they intend without messing up, so there's no reason not to also expect that from the England rugby league head coach, a significant national sporting role which rightly carries great responsibility. I agree that everyone should be given the opportunity to explain, reflect on and learn from the things they say without the mob descending and I don't think anything in my post suggested "cancelling" him as the young people call it it today. But overall, why shouldn't people in positions of responsibility be accountable for the words they speak?
  20. It's not as clear cut as that. Victor Radley could get a British passport easily without setting foot here as his dad was British citizen born in UK. So arguably those who have played here for a certain amount of time have shown more comittment to the country than lucky passport holders. I think 3 years is too short - it's just the length of a single contract - but 5 years I think is a decent measure of a deeper connection.
  21. The conversation was initially about Radley, and I think he's entitled to have his view on the issue of picking Aussie born, England-eligible players. We've been round that one many times on here. But then he went on to use phrases like "pure-born English" and "I know what an Englishman is, I know what an Englishman is" which at best are very careless, as they imply he only sees people born here as English and his own personal views on Englishness are driving his selection. Both of these would be unacceptable. If I'm being charitable I'd say he wasn't considering the exact meaning of the words he was saying, but people's off the cuff speech often gives a good guide to what they really feel. I like Shaun Wane, I heard one of his speaking engagements in the City and it was very interesting and captivated many types in the room who wouldn't have cared much for rugby league to put it lightly! But I'd expect the England head coach to consider his words more wisely and understand the responsibility he has which goes beyond putting the team on the park, that's part of the job of a national team coach. I wouldn't expect Gareth Southgate for instance to get in such a muddle. Frankly, going back to the Bennett era and then now, I don't know why it's even the coaches that seem to have a say on selection criteria. The RFL - the national governing body - should be the ones publicly stating eligibility and then the coaches should just get on with it.
  22. A sobering read, and one that will be mirrored in every superleague club. Surviving 2020 is only the start, 2021 looks a huge challenge too.
  23. Why? If it's deemed safe to play and attend in limited numbers, and the clubs can make that work financially, then why not play a self contained completion for the RFL Championship. Some people will be delighted to be able to support their team in any way after the last few months of awfulness.
  24. It does say: "The final matter of the signing rests on the 2020 season starting again, with the inclusion of promotion to the Super League... But you're right, it does seem an awful lot of effort to arrange and announce if you genuinely have no idea if the season will resume. They must be hopeful. How many other full-time players do Fev have? (Excluding Dr players and loans)
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