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Rugby League World Cup 2021 (Merged Threads)


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1 hour ago, EastLondonMike said:

For me the apathy towards International competition from Australia is all about genuine competition. England and NZ may be able to spring a surprise now and again, but deep down we all know that going in to these games an Australian win is highly likely. And until that changes, nothing else will.

It's the same for England fans in their attitude towards France and the other euro nations that play RL. Even though France could spring a surprise, we all know it's extremely unlikely. I think i mentioned it earlier on this thread, that the Aussies attitude towards us is not much different than the attitude of many towards France.

When we can go into games without that feeling of knowing who is likely to win, then we'll see the appetite for International games grow. 

We also need to actually play some games of course.

To some extent I agree Mike but I actually think this is about money and power.

The NRL want full control over when International RL is played, by whom, where, and at what benefit financially. They ultimately want it as a third arm of potential revenue going into this decade. It is an upsell to current Australasian paymasters and broadcasters. If England want to come along and join in that's fine - but on the NRL's terms.

The see it as a Pro Bowl or All Stars type feature of their core products which is NRL and SOO.

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2 hours ago, The Rocket said:

I`ll tell you right now mate, it`s going to take more than that, it`s going to take probably another 10 years to rebuild the credibility of international League. It`s going to take sustained competitiveness, it`s going to take Oz consistently losing series.

I think the problem here is that we are coming at this from different angles, you`re coming from it from the point of view maybe we will beat them this time, your average mug-punter Australian League fan is here we go again, compounded by the fact that they think how good is this SOO, international League is second rate.

Any way I`m not going to get into an argument with you, that, as an fervid fan of international League is how I  see it and I long for the day when we can have the by and large lottery of results they have in other international codes.

I accept that this is an issue for you, I disagree that it is a big issue for the population. I think the bigger issue is that the governing body do things half-assed, and that the whole focus is on Origin and NRL.

The last 15 years or so have been far more competitive than at any time I have been watching in over 35 years. The first time I saw the Aussies lose a series was 2005. In fact that was the first time they had lost a series in my lifetime. I was born in 1978 when they lost to France, but they won every series, World Cup etc. until 2005. 

They then lost the World Cup in 2008. 

They then lost the Four Nations in 2010.

They then lost another Four Nations in 2014. 

They won a very tight World Cup final 6 nil versus England at home.

They lost their last Test match versus Tonga.

Considering the quality of the Kangaroo players, to lose four series over this period, and lose to Tonga really is way off, and shows that the lack of competition is a bit of a red herring.

Wider than that we then have England v Kiwis being pretty even - we tend to win over here, they win over there. The emergence of the Pacific Nations has seen Tonga beat Aus, NZ and GB in recent years, Fiji beat NZ, PNG beat GB and so on. The international game is more varied and competitive than at any other team in the modern game. 

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1 hour ago, JM2010 said:

I might switch to union. I'm sat watching Olympics 7s involving many countries. I can watch 6 Nations, Autumn internationals, SH internationals involving SA, NZ, Australia, Argentina, Lions Tours, Heineken Cup, World 7s circuit and a well organised, well publicised WC. 

It is very enticing. The problem is you end up having to watch Union.

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1 minute ago, Scubby said:

To some extent I agree Mike but I actually think this is about money and power.

The NRL want full control over when International RL is played, by whom, where, and at what benefit financially. They ultimately want it as a third arm of potential revenue going into this decade. It is an upsell to current Australasian paymasters and broadcasters. If England want to come along and join in that's fine - but on the NRL's terms.

I Completely agree with you mate. 100%.

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1 hour ago, londonrlfan said:

I do believe that is part of the reason. The Aussies see themselves as the Harlem Globetrotters of International RL, it's just a precision for them to win. When it was a foregone conclusion to win, they had no problems with turning up. Now they have genuine competition, they don't bother to turn up. They can bleat on about competitiveness all they like, but Queensland won ten in a row and nothing was said. 

I don't believe the Aussies are afraid of losing. But I do believe they're afraid that the quality of the international game (over which they don't have control) will supercede their golden goose of SoO. 

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6 minutes ago, Dave T said:

I accept that this is an issue for you, I disagree that it is a big issue for the population. I think the bigger issue is that the governing body do things half-assed, and that the whole focus is on Origin and NRL.

The last 15 years or so have been far more competitive than at any time I have been watching in over 35 years. The first time I saw the Aussies lose a series was 2005. In fact that was the first time they had lost a series in my lifetime. I was born in 1978 when they lost to France, but they won every series, World Cup etc. until 2005. 

They then lost the World Cup in 2008. 

They then lost the Four Nations in 2010.

They then lost another Four Nations in 2014. 

They won a very tight World Cup final 6 nil versus England at home.

They lost their last Test match versus Tonga.

Considering the quality of the Kangaroo players, to lose four series over this period, and lose to Tonga really is way off, and shows that the lack of competition is a bit of a red herring.

Wider than that we then have England v Kiwis being pretty even - we tend to win over here, they win over there. The emergence of the Pacific Nations has seen Tonga beat Aus, NZ and GB in recent years, Fiji beat NZ, PNG beat GB and so on. The international game is more varied and competitive than at any other team in the modern game. 

You can only dominate if you play. In four years since 2017 they have played four tests - Tonga 1W 1L and NZ 1W 1L - this is not very dominant. 

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6 minutes ago, Dave T said:

I accept that this is an issue for you, I disagree that it is a big issue for the population. I think the bigger issue is that the governing body do things half-assed, and that the whole focus is on Origin and NRL.

The last 15 years or so have been far more competitive than at any time I have been watching in over 35 years. The first time I saw the Aussies lose a series was 2005. In fact that was the first time they had lost a series in my lifetime. I was born in 1978 when they lost to France, but they won every series, World Cup etc. until 2005. 

They then lost the World Cup in 2008. 

They then lost the Four Nations in 2010.

They then lost another Four Nations in 2014. 

They won a very tight World Cup final 6 nil versus England at home.

They lost their last Test match versus Tonga.

Considering the quality of the Kangaroo players, to lose four series over this period, and lose to Tonga really is way off, and shows that the lack of competition is a bit of a red herring.

Wider than that we then have England v Kiwis being pretty even - we tend to win over here, they win over there. The emergence of the Pacific Nations has seen Tonga beat Aus, NZ and GB in recent years, Fiji beat NZ, PNG beat GB and so on. The international game is more varied and competitive than at any other team in the modern game. 

I think part of the trouble is we just don't play internationals often enough so these defeats just get forgot about then the default position, or myth, is that international RL is not competitive. Years off with no internationals don't help at all. I think if the Aussies were playing 6 times a year and losing 1 or 2 it would be viewed differently.

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This did make me smile. When the boot is on the other foot and all that. Also the irony is not lost that this is in the SMH which has barely reported anything about the RLWC and nothing about the uproar or player views:

Ashes threats by England are condescending and ungrateful

Former Ashes-winning England captain Michael Vaughan and his cranky cricket mates are sounding, dare I say it, like whinging Poms.

Vaughan’s latest condescending lecture via his column in the London Telegraph would have been more fitting of a preened English Lord 200 years ago, whipping those convict-stained colonials from the antipodes into shape.

Ashes threats by England are condescending and ungrateful (smh.com.au)

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5 minutes ago, RugbyLeagueGeek said:

I don't believe the Aussies are afraid of losing. But I do believe they're afraid that the quality of the international game (over which they don't have control) will supercede their golden goose of SoO. 

I don't think it's even that.

There is no rugby league purity test that this World Cup can pass because that's not the issue. Just like covid is not the issue.

The issue is that it's money that the NRL isn't getting.

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Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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Just now, Damien said:

This did make me smile. When the boot is on the other foot and all that. Also the irony is not lost that this is in the SMH which has barely reported anything about the RLWC and nothing about the uproar or player views:

Ashes threats by England are condescending and ungrateful

Former Ashes-winning England captain Michael Vaughan and his cranky cricket mates are sounding, dare I say it, like whinging Poms.

Vaughan’s latest condescending lecture via his column in the London Telegraph would have been more fitting of a preened English Lord 200 years ago, whipping those convict-stained colonials from the antipodes into shape.

Ashes threats by England are condescending and ungrateful (smh.com.au)

To be fair, I believe most people believe that that writer is a colossal [redacted].

Also, in a fight between snooty aussie commentators and Michael Vaughan all you can hope for is the sweet release of death.

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Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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3 minutes ago, Damien said:

I think part of the trouble is we just don't play internationals often enough so these defeats just get forgot about then the default position, or myth, is that international RL is not competitive. Years off with no internationals don't help at all. I think if the Aussies were playing 6 times a year and losing 1 or 2 it would be viewed differently.

Indeed. It's like saying Eng/GB haven't won an Ashes series for 50 years, when in reality we haven't played one for the last 18. 

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2 hours ago, Hela Wigmen said:

I didn’t know Covid didn’t exist in coffee shops. 

That’s the exact kind of “restrictions” that gives the ARLC such an easy out on the basis of a pandemic.

I’m pretty sure Olympians are not wandering the streets of Tokyo looking for a coffee.

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2 minutes ago, gingerjon said:

I don't think it's even that.

There is no rugby league purity test that this World Cup can pass because that's not the issue. Just like covid is not the issue.

The issue is that it's money that the NRL isn't getting.

I think that definitely is a part of it. But also the more successful the international game becomes, the less prestige is attached to SoO, which ultimately could impact on money they're getting as well.

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1 hour ago, JM2010 said:

I might switch to union. I'm sat watching Olympics 7s involving many countries. I can watch 6 Nations, Autumn internationals, SH internationals involving SA, NZ, Australia, Argentina, Lions Tours, Heineken Cup, World 7s circuit and a well organised, well publicised WC. 

Why do you need to switch? Just watch both rugby league and rugby union. I've been doing that since the late 1980's.

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1 hour ago, JM2010 said:

I might switch to union. I'm sat watching Olympics 7s involving many countries. I can watch 6 Nations, Autumn internationals, SH internationals involving SA, NZ, Australia, Argentina, Lions Tours, Heineken Cup, World 7s circuit and a well organised, well publicised WC. 

Sayonara. Enjoy all that. I’d rather have a donkey kick me in the testicles.
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3 minutes ago, Damien said:

I think part of the trouble is we just don't play internationals often enough so these defeats just get forgot about then the default position, or myth, is that international RL is not competitive. Years off with no internationals don't help at all. I think if the Aussies were playing 6 times a year and losing 1 or 2 it would be viewed differently.

I agree and what you've said at the end there is something I've always thought in terms of the number of games we should play. I don't think we need to be playing at least 10 games a year like they do in football and union which is what some people seem to think our international game should be like. 

Personally I think even just 4 a year would be fine as long as it was a set in stone, guaranteed schedule that would ensure those games take place. Until covid, the big nations did play an average of 4 games a year but not regularly, they'd go a couple of years playing just a single game each year, maybe even missing a year entirely and then play 6 games at a World Cup or 4 at a four nations and a warm up game and these years with tournaments would raise the average number. Unfortunately though this was not a regular flow of games and so the international game would always just seem like a big of an after thought. Regularly playing is more important than the volume of games that are played just to keep international games in people's minds.

Even if only a couple of internationals are played every year there is still always games for people to be buying tickets for and games to be out on tele for the neutrals out there to watch. It's no wonder the international game gets completely overlooked though when the last time England played was in 2018. 

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7 minutes ago, Sports Prophet said:

That’s the exact kind of “restrictions” that gives the ARLC such an easy out on the basis of a pandemic.

I’m pretty sure Olympians are not wandering the streets of Tokyo looking for a coffee.

No but they are meeting up with people from different teams and then  having to isolate when they test positive for covid nearly taking out the entire team... thats fantastic work BTW!

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14 minutes ago, RugbyLeagueGeek said:

Indeed. It's like saying Eng/GB haven't won an Ashes series for 50 years, when in reality we haven't played one for the last 18. 

It does bug me when you hear people saying these kind of things. You get in on football coverage all the time. A new team will be promoted to the PL and they will say, "team X hasn't beaten team Y for 60 years". What they don't tell you is they've maybe only played each other once in that time. Meaningless stats. 

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3 minutes ago, Sports Prophet said:

Sayonara. Enjoy all that. I’d rather have a donkey kick me in the testicles.

It can be arranged... :kolobok_ph34r:

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1 hour ago, Jim from Oz said:

I still can’t believe the ARLC and NZRL have done this

Who needs enemies when you can have Australians?

You must feel so ashamed on behalf of your compatriots.

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36 minutes ago, RP London said:

It can be arranged... :kolobok_ph34r:

😂 I’m sure. Let’s just try and get a RLWC arranged shall we.

Ive been vocal about Australia and NZ having suitable reasons to withdraw from this WC. Many disagree with, that’s fine, people often do.

What doesn’t appear to be happening is an ARLC/NZRL U-turn and I can’t understand how Indigenous and Maori teams will proceed, as interesting that would be.

Best I can hope for as far as I can see is the WC does get rescheduled to next year and cross my fingers that England are unceremoniously knocked out of the FIFA WC following three straight defeats in the group stage, leaving the English public looking for a hero in the form of their RL team. 

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