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'haven v toronto

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Toronto took three good players from the Bulls when we were in administration. Those lads haven't lost their full-time status and hopefully haven't lost money. They have been able to progress their careers and are on an adventure. Well done to them and well done to Toronto.

Edited by Wolford6
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12 minutes ago, Lowdesert said:

With all the space at the ground on view, letting kids in free might have helped adults come as well.  Certainly it would've improved the game as a spectacle.  Granted the weather didn't help but, do you know if there were any promotions to attract kids?

Sorry but I don't know. Whitehaven is a world away from here!

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17 minutes ago, Hopping Mad said:

As a follower of the game rather than a particular club (too many moves over the years too far away from the team I supported in childhood), I'd watch the expansion teams if they were competitive. But they aren't. I'll get down to Hemel this season, albeit for a game against a fellow expansion club. Pointless, certainly as a neutral, paying to watch Stags get battered by the likes of Barrow and Keighley. In rugby league terms, Hemel, UGAG and Oxford are fairly exotic. As such, they appeal to me. But fixtures with 60-plus points between winner and loser do not. Clearly, given the state of League One's attendances, games like that don't excite fans committed to one club, either.

I wonder if Keighley still feel the same about 'battering' expansion teams after they got a dose of it themselves on Sunday against Gloucester?

I don't really understand the idea that games against expansion clubs are a 'hard sell'. Are there really people in Barrow who will flood onto the terraces for a game against Hunslet that won't darken the doors for a game against Coventry?

Edited by paulwalker71

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I nearly went to the Whitehaven-Toronto game but, in the end, opted for North Wales-Doncaster (a two-and-a-half-hour one-way drive won out over one of three hours). Shame I couldn't be in two places at one time. I lived in Whitehaven for five years in the Eighties and was a regular at the Recreation Ground. When I first moved to Cumbria, in 1986, Haven's average home gate was about 1,800 (two-thirds more than it is now). Very interesting (if undeniably depressing) to read Derwent's excellent contributions to this thread. I was surprised the Toronto game drew only 643 souls but, given what I came to know about Whitehaven, its people and the rugby league scene in west Cumbria, maybe I shouldn't have been.

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3 minutes ago, paulwalker71 said:

I wonder if Keighley still feel the same about 'battering' expansion teams after they got a dose of it themselves on Sunday against Gloucester?

I don't really understand the idea that games against expansion clubs are a 'hard sell'. Are there really people in Barrow who will flood onto the terraces for a game against Hunslet that won't darken the doors for a game against Coventry?

I think that one depends upon League positions of the opponents. If both those team are in the bottom two you'd probably get the same home attendance with the variable being the number of fans Hunslet bring.

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Barrow, Workington and Whitehaven are the equivalent of Wakefield, Featherstone and Castlrford. Valuable clubs but not viable clubs to prosper in Superleague whilst they are chasing the same small supporter base.


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5 minutes ago, Mister C said:

Sorry but I don't know. Whitehaven is a world away from here!

Outsiders don't tend to appreciate how things work in Cumbria. People living in Penrith are as likely to visit Melbourne as they are to go to Whitehaven. Ulverstonians do, indeed, regard Whitehaven as "a world away". I visited Kendal a few weeks ago, got talking to locals and mentioned I lived in Whitehaven for a time. "Ooh, I've never been there," said one, suggesting it was as distant as Australia. Some posters on this thread have talked about Barrow-Haven being a derby. I never got the impression it was rated as one when I watched Haven in the 80s. And the crowds, on the whole, indicated it wasn't. Realistically, Haven, however much effort they made, were never going to be able to market the Toronto game beyond west Cumbria.

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3 hours ago, GaryO said:

On a demographic comparison you are measuring the London apple with the Whitehaven apple, it is more like a giant melon v a grape, what was the target audience of Londons marketing .......... how many millions?

I know Skolars worked hard but they certainly didn't target millions of people. I do know that they had a real good go at getting anyone on their database who had bought tickets from them before to get down to the New River.Therefore Whitehaven, if they have such a database, have a target audience far bigger than that which the Skolars were working at.

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14 minutes ago, paulwalker71 said:

I wonder if Keighley still feel the same about 'battering' expansion teams after they got a dose of it themselves on Sunday against Gloucester?

I don't really understand the idea that games against expansion clubs are a 'hard sell'. Are there really people in Barrow who will flood onto the terraces for a game against Hunslet that won't darken the doors for a game against Coventry?

There must be people who pick and choose their games, Paul. I can't be the only one! What's more alarming is the number of people who have simply stopped going - not just to Barrow but elsewhere - because there's only two or three matches in the fixture list likely to offer a competitive spectacle.

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54 minutes ago, RP London said:

Out of interest, and I really dont know so its a proper question not setting you up for a fall, but is it because Hemel/Oxford/GoG etc are not very good at the moment (i know glos has a good win on the weekend) or is it because they are who they are.. ie if they were jam packed full of quality and it was going to be a close game/loss against a team chasing promotion etc would this get people through the gates? 

speaking as a Hemel fan it certainly doesn't help at all that they're diabolical. If someone comes along to check them out they're likely to see them hammered, if they decide to give it another go they'll see them get hammered again. It's not good to watch and I can see why people wouldn't come back. There's also very little effort that I can see to push awareness of the club but then again, "hey, come and see us get hammered" is a tough sell.  I think I've now seen 22 consecutive defeats - only the truly mental would be interested in seeing that (yes, I'm not well).

If Hemel had a great table topping team would attendances be fantastic? Probably not. Would they be much higher than they are now - yes, without a doubt. 

(obviously there is also currently another reason people are staying away but that's irrelevant to this particular question)

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1 minute ago, Rascal Bongo Stork said:

speaking as a Hemel fan it certainly doesn't help at all that they're diabolical. If someone comes along to check them out they're likely to see them hammered, if they decide to give it another go they'll see them get hammered again. It's not good to watch and I can see why people wouldn't come back. There's also very little effort that I can see to push awareness of the club but then again, "hey, come and see us get hammered" is a tough sell.  I think I've now seen 22 consecutive defeats - only the truly mental would be interested in seeing that (yes, I'm not well).

If Hemel had a great table topping team would attendances be fantastic? Probably not. Would they be much higher than they are now - yes, without a doubt. 

(obviously there is also currently another reason people are staying away but that's irrelevant to this particular question)

I assume behind much of the decision for upping training basis is to have a chance of attracting players that they couldn't get to move down to hemel and therefore raise the chances of getting better players and a competitive side.. I suppose if they prove that that is the case maybe they will be able to bring people around. 

not sure I agree it is the right way to go in this instance but the proof will be in the eating I suppose. 

if they had done this right from the start though I wonder whether it would have been such an issue.. 

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1 minute ago, RP London said:

I assume behind much of the decision for upping training basis is to have a chance of attracting players that they couldn't get to move down to hemel and therefore raise the chances of getting better players and a competitive side.. I suppose if they prove that that is the case maybe they will be able to bring people around. 

not sure I agree it is the right way to go in this instance but the proof will be in the eating I suppose. 

if they had done this right from the start though I wonder whether it would have been such an issue.. 

I think those at the club who decided on the move were going with exactly that plan - we're toast if we keep losing every game, let's go northern and get some wins. There is a school of thought held by all those who've walked away that it wouldn't be so bad a situation if we had retained many of the southern players lost over the years who decided it was better to go elsewhere (it would seem a combination of unhappiness with the coaching setup and for some being able to get more money elsewhere) - a look at the Skolars squad would reveal many of them - but putting that aside and in light of being the worst team in the league the decision was made to go northern. Obviously the absolute minimum requirement of such a move is that they did start winning and did start moving up the league - they've lost to All Golds,Skolars & Oxford so far, teams that they have to at the bare minimum challenge to make the move worthwhile. So, in a nutshell, things aren't going well at all. I fear for the future. I will keep 'em peeled for the next euro lottery roll over.

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10 minutes ago, Rascal Bongo Stork said:

I think those at the club who decided on the move were going with exactly that plan - we're toast if we keep losing every game, let's go northern and get some wins. There is a school of thought held by all those who've walked away that it wouldn't be so bad a situation if we had retained many of the southern players lost over the years who decided it was better to go elsewhere (it would seem a combination of unhappiness with the coaching setup and for some being able to get more money elsewhere) - a look at the Skolars squad would reveal many of them - but putting that aside and in light of being the worst team in the league the decision was made to go northern. Obviously the absolute minimum requirement of such a move is that they did start winning and did start moving up the league - they've lost to All Golds,Skolars & Oxford so far, teams that they have to at the bare minimum challenge to make the move worthwhile. So, in a nutshell, things aren't going well at all. I fear for the future. I will keep 'em peeled for the next euro lottery roll over.

i used to love playing against Hemel when I was at South London and have a bit of a soft spot for them.. hopefully the move works but I really felt that they were the best set to step up with the junior set up and amateur links they had to tap into.. 

I hope they can get it right and move back down before they lose the pathway they had built up over 20 + years... 

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Games against teams nearby always attract more supporters in any sport.  As a Batley fan my favourite game is against Dewsbury. I have no special interest in going to watch Tolouse or Toronto - I go to see Batley. 

I imagine it is the same in Super league? Games at home to Catalans don't attract higher crowds.  The London v Toronto game was an anomaly.

Somebody made a good point that fans are not seeing any new players in the Toronto side yet. People are not going to see the same movie just because it has a different name. 

Edited by Niels

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1 hour ago, paulwalker71 said:

I wonder if Keighley still feel the same about 'battering' expansion teams after they got a dose of it themselves on Sunday against Gloucester?

I don't really understand the idea that games against expansion clubs are a 'hard sell'. Are there really people in Barrow who will flood onto the terraces for a game against Hunslet that won't darken the doors for a game against Coventry?

The evidence that there is seems ot suggest that the issue is not whether they are an expansion team, but whether there is much history with them.  Catalans visiting used to lead to a drop in home support, nowadays that does not happen.  


"You clearly have never met Bob8 then, he's like a veritable Bryan Ferry of RL." - Johnoco 19 Jul 2014

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57 minutes ago, Rascal Bongo Stork said:

speaking as a Hemel fan it certainly doesn't help at all that they're diabolical. If someone comes along to check them out they're likely to see them hammered, if they decide to give it another go they'll see them get hammered again. It's not good to watch and I can see why people wouldn't come back. There's also very little effort that I can see to push awareness of the club but then again, "hey, come and see us get hammered" is a tough sell.  I think I've now seen 22 consecutive defeats - only the truly mental would be interested in seeing that (yes, I'm not well).

If Hemel had a great table topping team would attendances be fantastic? Probably not. Would they be much higher than they are now - yes, without a doubt. 

(obviously there is also currently another reason people are staying away but that's irrelevant to this particular question)

If you ask people why they go to a rugby league game, they will say it is for the quality of sport on display or lifetime loyalty.  It is not true.

If you ask people what they look for in a restaurant, the first thing will be the quality of food.  But it is not true, people want atmosphere are good service, the food can be poor and the restaurant still popular.  

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"You clearly have never met Bob8 then, he's like a veritable Bryan Ferry of RL." - Johnoco 19 Jul 2014

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2 minutes ago, Bob8 said:

The evidence that there is seems ot suggest that the issue is not whether they are an expansion team, but whether there is much history with them.  Catalans visiting used to lead to a drop in home support, nowadays that does not happen.  

Yes but also if Catalans were self evidently the best team in the competition then surely more people would go along and watch? Toronto are self evidently the best team in League 1 so surely it's an easier sell to get people down there.  Ah, I think this conversation has now circled for the 50th time. I shall wander off and idly dream of my forthcoming trip to Broncos v Toronto this Friday - even if I have seen nearly all the players before and even if one side are actually Leigh reserves rejects, it should be a good un!

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3 minutes ago, Bob8 said:

If you ask people why they go to a rugby league game, they will say it is for the quality of sport on display or lifetime loyalty.  It is not true.

If you ask people what they look for in a restaurant, the first thing will be the quality of food.  But it is not true, people want atmosphere are good service, the food can be poor and the restaurant still popular.  

but Hemel's results are the equivalent of a zero star hygiene rating on the window and as they're not a late night kebab shop nobody is going to go and eat in there so there will be no atmosphere.  If any club of anyone on this board had played as consistently bad, now into a third season of woefulness, then attendances would be absolutely decimated - however great you think the atmosphere is down there right now, the only atmosphere you'd have now is angry people hollering abuse - which is a default setting for some when their team is winning, what if they never won...??  There's a reason Leeds get their crowds and Hunslet get theirs, it's year after year after year after year of results - not what a great crack the South Stand has been.

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Just now, Rascal Bongo Stork said:

Yes but also if Catalans were self evidently the best team in the competition then surely more people would go along and watch? Toronto are self evidently the best team in League 1 so surely it's an easier sell to get people down there.  Ah, I think this conversation has now circled for the 50th time. I shall wander off and idly dream of my forthcoming trip to Broncos v Toronto this Friday - even if I have seen nearly all the players before and even if one side are actually Leigh reserves rejects, it should be a good un!

Both sides use the same evidence for the opposite points. 

Clearly, most marketing is rubbish and it is not straight forward.  

However, you have to identify why two thirds of your customers have disappeared.  Pubs had the same problem, a pub brought from the 1980's would struggle now and be seen as a dump.  I suspect that many clubs have not modernised in the same way that pubs have.  You can be very middle class and socially aspirational, and have your favourite local - why not the same for rugby league clubs.  That is a bigger issue than putting up posters.

The population is limited.  We are looking at 25,000 people.  That should still make four figure crowds possible.  It will be very hard to get people from outside the town, my own experience in Cumbria speak to that.  That should not mean give up.


"You clearly have never met Bob8 then, he's like a veritable Bryan Ferry of RL." - Johnoco 19 Jul 2014

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13 minutes ago, Rascal Bongo Stork said:

but Hemel's results are the equivalent of a zero star hygiene rating on the window and as they're not a late night kebab shop nobody is going to go and eat in there so there will be no atmosphere.  If any club of anyone on this board had played as consistently bad, now into a third season of woefulness, then attendances would be absolutely decimated - however great you think the atmosphere is down there right now, the only atmosphere you'd have now is angry people hollering abuse - which is a default setting for some when their team is winning, what if they never won...??  There's a reason Leeds get their crowds and Hunslet get theirs, it's year after year after year after year of results - not what a great crack the South Stand has been.

I would say they are the equivalent of a restaurant serving poor quality food.  No-one will actually ill from watching Hemel, no matter how sickened they feel.  However, if that poor restaurant thinks that going from very bad food to bad food will make it much more popular, it is wrong.  And it people are mainly brought in by the lure of good quality food, they are going to be disappointed.

It has to work out why else people would go to a restaurant/rugby league club.

Edited by Bob8

"You clearly have never met Bob8 then, he's like a veritable Bryan Ferry of RL." - Johnoco 19 Jul 2014

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All northerners have a chip on their shoulder about southerners. Hemel and the Skolars would get plenty more spectators (travelling fans and northerners trapped down south for work) if they changed their names to the Hemel Hooray Henrys and the East End Cockneys. Obviously, 90% of the fans would hope they got hammered but they'd get loads more income. If the clubs planted some people in shiny suits in the crowd, the banter would be brilliant. In next to no time, those northerners would really embrace the southern clubs as being blo  ody good sports.

 

:yes:

 

 

 

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9 minutes ago, Wolford6 said:

All northerners have a chip on their shoulder about southerners. Hemel and the Skolars would get plenty more spectators (travelling fans and northerners trapped down south for work) if they changed their names to the Hemel Hooray Henrys and the East End Cockneys. Obviously, 90% of the fans would hope they got hammered but they'd get loads more income. If the clubs planted some people in shiny suits in the crowd, the banter would be brilliant. In next to no time, those northerners would really embrace the southern clubs as being blo  ody good sports.

:yes:

I have run meetings in rugby league clubs, and if you had started talking like that, I would have encouraged you.  It is far more sensible than the mantra of "It's not working, so don't change anything".

Daring to be different is something that has enabled the very unlikely GAG to survive while Hemel have struggled.

Edited by Bob8

"You clearly have never met Bob8 then, he's like a veritable Bryan Ferry of RL." - Johnoco 19 Jul 2014

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5 hours ago, Bob8 said:

Indeed!  And understanding what makes them return is key.

I was involved in an amateur set up that in an expansion area, that had 600+ crowds, they had fun and no-one came back.  Your post seems to suggest that was a waste of time, I suggest we learn from it.  We figured the difference between being impressed and having fun and getting engaged with the clubs.  From then on, spectators were given jobs to do, and those that were given jobs tended to come back.

It is far harder than most on this board and this thread in particular think.  That is not the same as impossible.

A fair few years back I saw a night game at St Gaudens/Lezignan. Back then Pathé Sport TV did Monday night matches. There was a great atmosphere there below the Pyrenees - felt all the towns folk came out in unison because it was an occaison. Something a bit special.

Enjoy your imputs Bob - you make me think; keep'em coming.

Edited by audois
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"It involves matters much greater than drafting the new rules...the original and existing games have their own powerful appeal to their players and public and have the sentiments which history inspires"  - Harold 'Jersey' Flegg 1933

"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."  - Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

Si tu( Remi Casty) devais envoyer un fax au Président Guasch? " Un grand bravo pour ce que vous avez fait,et merci de m 'avoir embarqué dans cette aventure"

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58 minutes ago, audois said:

A fair few years back I saw a night game at St Gaudens/Lezignan. Back then Pathé Sport TV did Monday night matches. There was a great atmosphere there below the Pyrenees - felt all the towns folk came out in unison because it was an occaison. Something a bit special.

Enjoy your imputs Bob - you make me think; keep'em coming.

Coming from you, that is high praise indeed!  Thank you!


"You clearly have never met Bob8 then, he's like a veritable Bryan Ferry of RL." - Johnoco 19 Jul 2014

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