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Non Cross Code
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Everything posted by DC77

  1. ^ RL in Australia doesn’t make enough money to be impactful outside Australia (according to that Gus bloke almost all the clubs run at a loss, so every penny they have they use to invest inward), but nor does it make too little amount of money that would then force them to look outside Australia (hence they take a protective stance with their own competition taking priority over anything outside it, which is especially understandable when you compare the money generated inside Australia (however small that is in relative terms) to outside it). The main issue is Australia doesn’t have a big enough market domestically to alter things outside it. And even in this small market it’s only marginally the biggest code (Aussie Rules being a close 2nd nationally which controls the area west of that line they came up with to split the two of them). These NRL teams are very small in global terms. Comparatively speaking, from a financial and support base point of view, they would be lower second tier (and some upper third tier) English football clubs, and if those clubs were the big time players in football their impact would be negligible. Comparing the two leagues (last pre-Covid season) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2018–19_EFL_Championship average crowd 20,075 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2019_NRL_season average crowd 15,800 Having watched it for the first time this season the NRL is a fantastic product. It has completely changed my view on Australian RL (previously had it down as being a Wayne Bennett pragmatic type of game), but it’s simply too small a player to really effect RL outside Aus. So if it isn’t doing much for the game outside Australia, the only real impact of a healthy and thriving league that I can see is it is taking away the best players from here.
  2. When a RL game comes on the tv, the tv immediately blacks out. This phenomenon would explain your theory (and it’s not just you) that “most people have no idea about” RL. Anyone who follows sport in England, knows about RL. What is a lacking is having an interest in it. The question that needs to be answered is how do you generate more interest. Creating stars is one major way you can do that, but that requires a more open, attacking game like how it was previously.
  3. https://www.smh.com.au/sport/nrl/is-rugby-league-dying-the-never-before-released-numbers-that-have-nrl-powerbrokers-concerned-20210519-p57tah.html It’s one of those cliched “rugby league is dying” articles, but looking beyond that there is a decline in participation in teens when it comes to the contact version of the sport. Don’t know if Aussie Rules has quite the same concussion issue so there may or may not be any gain for them.
  4. It’s got nowt to do with lack of appeal. Australia didn’t have an Empire to spread its game like the Brits did to its outposts. RL (plus RU and cricket) are British commonwealth sports (southwest France being the exception w/ both rugby codes played outside British dominion). Had the roles been reversed and there was an Aussie Empire sending Aussies to Blighty there’s a high chance Aussie Rules would be played here.
  5. He’s done an amazing job with boxing in the UK. Globally the sport is at its lowest ebb in its history with no current hall of fame level fighter bar Alvarez, yet he’s managed to fill out stadiums in the UK with C level fighters. Froch vs Groves, a fight that would have been held in an Arena on the undercard of a terrestrial fight in the era of Benn, Calzaghe and co. and yet he’s got them fighting as a main event, at Wembley Stadium, on PPV. He’s done similar wonders with another bogstandard fighter in Anthony Joshua. Dillian Whyte vs Derek Chisora, main event, on PPV. It’s extraordinary. It’s been years since the last big fight in Vegas as the world class talent isn’t there, but somehow Hearn is able to drum up domestic interest for fights to be staged in stadiums, and have folk actually pay to watch them on PPV. He’s clearly very good at what he does as he’s not working with much.
  6. Thats the “way things are” if it’s a cold, clinical North American business-first attitude to sport where the “owner” lifts the bleedin trophy before the blokes that actually won the thing, while players come out with “it’s great to play for this franchise” like they are working for a company. Sticking pins on a map with franchises (involving mergers, uprooting teams and moving them to more populous areas), this clinical attitude is alien to here where sports teams (not “franchises”) have a deep connection to the community they represent. Like a shopping centre, a restaurant (insert a business of your choosing) teams relocate at the drop of a hat in North America with little or no issue as they are devoid of any connection to the local area, and they can do so as fan culture in NA is transient. Such a move happened here once (Wimbledon moving to Milton Keynes) and there was uproar. Move Liverpool FC “franchise” 200 miles down the road and your asking for WWIII. The three yank “owners” (they ain’t owners here, supporters are the owners, the “owner” is there to sign the cheques until the next fella takes over) tried to uproot Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal from the English league system and put them in a closed shop European Super Duper League...to widespread uproar and the concept was dead inside 24 hours. RL is predominately played in former pit towns in a geographic area across the north of England. That’s it DNA. It’s what has sustained it over 125 years, and it should be celebrated. A poster on here a few days ago said with the advent of Super League there was almost an attempt to hide RL’s history..”we are now Paris, London etc”. But for all those pit towns where the sport has a devoted and loyal following RL wouldn’t exist as a sport in England. New shiny things are all well and good, but turning your back on those that care most about the sport will leave you with nothing.
  7. Only seen a Wayne Bennett team with England and now South Sydney so it’s perhaps not a fair assessment, but I couldn’t watch a side coached by him if those teams are anything to go by. Competitive yes, but low risk (which ultimately makes them competitive). You do of course have to credit him for getting both these sides to a final. Bit after the Lord Mayor’s show that game. Decent game, but last week’s titanic tussle was the final. Cleary’s kicking was imperious yet again.
  8. 100%. No club rugby team (either code, anywhere in the world) has ever had as high a profile as Wigan Warriors did, and not just due to Grandstand. They had it because they won, a lot, and did so with Offiah (accompanied by Tuigamala) running in try after try in an open, attacking era. The NBA was never more high profile when the Chicago Bulls dominated (it’s the last time I watched basketball), with Jordan and co. lighting up the court accompanied by this fabulous entrance music from the English prog rock band Alan Parsons project. Barcelona and Real Madrid have become the two biggest sports teams on the planet because they compete at the very top (well, Barca did) with teams of stars...I barely missed a Barca game in decades with Ronaldo (R9) then Rivaldo then Ronaldinho then Messi, one genius after another, lining up for them. Federer dominating tennis elevated the sport, as Woods did with golf. People watched NZ with Lomu (rugby’s last major star) to see them destroy the opposition. Watching excellence is very very appealing. It brings a wow factor that draws people in.
  9. My brother (in Texas) had a similar thing with baseball in that he went to a game, bought a top, then quickly lost interest. As kids we played rounders (the origin of baseball and nigh on identical to it) but that wasn’t enough to drag us in to watching the game adults across the Atlantic play. Although it is a global sport basketball must have more people who play it recreationally but don’t actually follow it. An NBA final getting 18 million total viewers; globally there must be at least 10 times that who have a hoop at/near their home they have played on, the difference being African Americans (predominantly) play a competitive form of it on the streets that is unlike anywhere else.
  10. Two reasons I don’t get anyone hoping another sport has less followers/viewers. 1.its sad. 2.it ain’t going to impact your own chosen sport. I don’t know if it’s just a RL thing (I’ve mainly been around football (and there’s none of it there) so can’t speak about other sports), but it serves no purpose. You might get comments like egg chasers or toffs game, but never come across anyone who’d actively want to see less follow them. If RL struggles to grab attention the focus/envy shouldn’t be on a sport that gets most (or even the other rugby code RU which doesn’t get much either), the focus should be on what can be done to make RL more appealing. Wigan vs Leeds, 7k for a playoff game. That’s where the focus should be. What changes can be done to entice more to watch the game.
  11. That’s not what I’m saying (I should have been clearer). Back then players were given the platform to shine, hence individuals like Best standing out. But now they’d get an even bigger platform to shine. The surfaces they played on were shocking, as were the tackles. Dribblers like Messi et al. now play on a carpet, and they get referee protection. George Best running through on goal in a muddy pitch (bobbles everywhere) and having to ride a “challenge” (attempted leg breaker) from Ron Harris. It was amazing balance (and goal) but the (knee) injuries he endured via challenges like this meant his career was over by 27. Pele was literally kicked out of the ‘66 World Cup in England. Maradona was assaulted by “the butcher of Bilbao”, suffered a broken ankle, while the boot used to inflict the damage was put in a glass case. While footballers now get a greater platform to shine, rugby players get less. Those wide open defences, gone. The quick play the ball, gone (count how long it takes for the 2 (3) big hallions to get off the grounded player). As well as better defensive organisation and spoiling, there’s the wrestle thrown into the mix. It’s infinitely harder for attacking players (who make up the vast majority of potential stars) to really stand out.
  12. Precisely. And even the “unforced” errors in tennis, quite often they are forced as the player makes an uncharacteristic error (hitting it into the net for instance) as a higher quality opponent has ramped up the pressure by continually hitting the ball back into court. Against a weaker opponent the ball isn’t returned, so there’s no error of any type. Essentially what we saw in the Penrith game was the best vs the best, and being up against the best plays are an awful lot harder. Melbourne are normally a lot cooler in their decision making, but they don’t face Penrith every week.
  13. Echo everything you said mate. I’ve said on here repeatedly that rugby (both codes) have become infinitely harder for attacking players to shine. In addition to better defensive organisation (largely via influx of RL coaches) the increased size/physicality has destroyed Union, with space now at a premium. In RL it too has better defensive tactics and then there’s the spoiling/slowing down the attacker in the play the ball routine which allows the defence to reset, so less gaps/space. Football has gone the opposite in that attacking players are given more licence than previous with refs clamping down on tackles...plus players now play in far better surfaces. Georgie Best in today’s era would be even better, as would any player from yesteryear. With attacking players afforded such a platform to shine more stars are created as a result. Conversely neither rugby code has had a star in decades (more precisely a decade and a half for RU), the platform on the field isn’t there.
  14. Nobody could sincerely call the NRL “dull and boring”. The Penrith vs Melbourne game was relentless. There is an enormous gulf between the NRL and SL, and I’m not talking about quality. SL will never have the quality of the NRL, but it could be as exciting, that is if the issue of the defending team spoiling/slowing down attacking play in the play the ball routine is dealt with. I’ve previously felt the PTB was an issue, but it was only clear what the specific issue with it was when a devoted RL follower made a comment on it.
  15. This comment is extremely interesting as I read a comment from a RL devotee on another forum which echoed this problem. Basically play is too predictable as the play the ball has become bogged down with too much leeway now given to the defending team who take forever to get off the grounded player (often pouring two or three individuals on him then slowly get off him one by one), allowing the defence to reset, so by the time the attacking player gets up the defence is organised, making attacks (and “runs from dummy half”, the posters words) infinitely harder. He also mentioned players feigning injury (such as holding their necks) to further slow down play. Must try and find the full comment as it nailed so much of the issue.
  16. Ahh, missed his sarcasm (didn’t read what he was responding to). Do see your point about RL embracing its roots/past.
  17. Football has lost edginess? Eh? Fans don’t sit together mate. Segregated. Away fans leave after home fans are gone. It was only three months ago Man Utd vs Liverpool was postponed after United fans invaded the pitch. The rugby codes in sharp contrast are full of bonhomie.
  18. Looking at number of errors can be misleading though. Play against a lesser opponent the error count will be lower. Melbourne (and Penrith) won’t have a tougher opponent. The intensity and quality that game was played at is a different level from anything in either code of rugby.
  19. I’m not getting into a long winded debate about the obvious, so in brief: using your hands, ie. throwing the ball (which more often than not are short, very short passes) is infinitely easier than using your foot, ie. kicking the ball (which more often than not, are not to a person stood five yards away). Any able bodied person with a basic level of fitness could throw a ball from A to B. Far less able bodied people with a basic level of fitness could kick a ball from A to B. A women’s passing sequence in RL rarely breaks down quickly (unless someone has a brain fart and takes their eye off the ball). A women’s passing sequence in football routinely breaks down. Thats just the gulf in passing requirements. The scoring is arguably a bigger gulf. Women's RL looks decent and not too dissimilar to men’s largely because the basic requirements to be competent at it are much smaller than football.
  20. Harsh. Its also an unfair comparison as RL is easier to play well than football. You could get 10 girls from the gym who have never played a team sport and get them to play 30 minutes of both, rugby (either code) they’d pick up the basic hand passing almost immediately, football is another matter. Scoring, you bend down and place the ball on an empty width of a field, the other, you have to generate power and kick the ball between posts eight yards apart with someone there to stop the shot. Women’s football needs years upon years of development to get to a decent standard (for women), and having been held back previously it’s a period of time they are entitled to. The WSL could (in time) be quality; where would women’s tennis be now if was in its infancy like women’s football?
  21. Wigan vs Leeds: 7,396 https://www.skysports.com/rugby-league/wigan-vs-leeds/55800
  22. Probably (of those that I’m aware of anyway) the best creation story in sport. It’s laughable that RU tried to portray it as lacking integrity for years when it was integrity personfied. “Hey, we believe we should be getting paid for what we do”...I mean the cheek of these upstarts. Amazing. Never seen anything like it. Been kicking a ball (round one) for years and the only straight run up hit would be a toe-poke (Romario was the king at this...he’d be running with the ball towards goal and then with little back-lift would toe-poke the ball, catching the goalkeeper flat footed).
  23. If there’s a hall of fame for comments this goes right in among the top.
  24. I was thinking the very same as I was typing. It is harder though. In fact I don't think I’ve ever seen anyone kick a ball on the ground with a straight run like that in any sport.
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