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Dual reg is far better for the game

Taking players out of semi pro and amateur clubs to make up the numbers at reserve grade is a very bad idea.

It works for reginal clubs like catalan toulouse and the welsh clubs but not in England, its too damaging

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8 hours ago, David Dockhouse Host said:

Super League clubs are meeting today to discuss the return of reserve Grade Rugby, or Steam if your as old as me 😁.

Pros and cons, do we want it?

Assuming a club needs another 20 players to run reserves that's c240 extra players in the pro game compared to now. 

What effect would that have on top level amateur game? 

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Personally I think it would be a step in the right direction, reintroducing the reserves.

For 1 thing, it would put a stop to supposedly professional clubs fielding 2 and 3 man benches citing a "lack of players". 😡

One point to be considerate of though, would be the part-time clubs who actually want to make the effort to field a reserve team. The last incarnation of this competition saw Halifax (who remained part time in order to fund their reserves I believe) and 1 or two other clubs (Keighley? Whitehaven?) marginalised by the pro clubs who effectively excluded them from their league. For me, if the part time teams make the effort to field A teams, they should be encouraged to do so, and not penalised, especially when a number of SuperLeague clubs are unwilling to make the same effort. (The usual deadbeat clubs would be the main culprits here). If the reserve competition comes back, the part time teams who want to participate should be included, possibly via a Reserve Cup (with pool games) if they are not deemed strong enough to play in the same league. That way the part time clubs could play in a small league of their own (eg: if there was only 4 of them they could play home and away against the other 3, = 6 league games, then possibly 3 pool games in a cup competition with the SuperLeague teams would give them 9 games, plus perhaps a final in their league and then another game or so if they somehow qualified from their cup pool. These plus one or two friendlies could give them a 10/11 game season to work with. (Or 14 if they wanted to add another round of league fixtures). This would permit these small clubs to put together a core of young players augmented by amateurs where needed.  

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Yes, but it can’t be done in isolation

First

Abolish Scholarships

  • They interfere with schooling during years 10 & 11 the two most vital years of Secondary School.
  • They disillusion junior players who don’t get selected
  • They force players to choose between school games, community games and scholarship games & training.
  • Allow young players to develop at their Community Clubs
  • Run Regional Camps
  • At U14s - Run inter Town Completion as a first step into the world of Representative trials, selection & non selection which breeds resilience. This provides the first taste of a higher standard of intensity, speed & competition. Also introduces players to a different Coach & System
  • At U16s - As above but also followed by Inter County Competition. This provides a further incremental step into the environment of Trials, Selection with a greater level of quality and intensity. Again, introduces more Coaches, new ideas, different systems.

 - National Schools Cup

 - Community Game

 - U14s Inter Town

- U16 Inter Town & Inter County

Secondly

U18s Academies run by Professional Clubs to include:

  • League Structure
  • Knockout Cup Competition
  • Play Offs £ Grand Final
  • Inter County Series
  • International Academy

Thirdly

U23s/Reserves to include

  • League Structure
  • Knockout Cup Competition
  • Play Offs & Grand Final
  • Maximum of 5 over 23s to allow for late developers/injury returnees/First Teamers needing game time

 

Edited by OMEGA
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34 minutes ago, OMEGA said:

First

Abolish Scholarships

  • Allow young players to develop at their Community Club

 

Wouldn't this just push ambitious kids (and parents) towards union academies? If we left RL kids to develop at community clubs, then their development would be miles behind Australian youngsters, and also union academy kids, who would have benefited from professional coaching, professional S&C, quality medical, professional sport science, video analysis etc etc. They can get all that in Union, so many would simply move across. 

The standard of players produced would rapidly fall across all pillars: Technical, Physical, Psychological and probably Tactical. Additionally, standards word fall against the competition (Australia). 

Edited by The Frying Scotsman
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2 hours ago, The Frying Scotsman said:

Wouldn't this just push ambitious kids (and parents) towards union academies? If we left RL kids to develop at community clubs, then their development would be miles behind Australian youngsters, and also union academy kids, who would have benefited from professional coaching, professional S&C, quality medical, professional sport science, video analysis etc etc. They can get all that in Union, so many would simply move across. 

The standard of players produced would rapidly fall across all pillars: Technical, Physical, Psychological and probably Tactical. Additionally, standards word fall against the competition (Australia). 

The only change is from the ages of 14 to 16 where we currently create a number of cliff edges over which many of our juniors fall. 

We currently select Scholarship players during their U13 season, the focus of most players during that year is to be selected for a Scholarship at the end of it! For those who are selected it’s great but for many of those that aren’t it’s devastating, so much so that Rugby League ends for them! Unfortunately at the end of the U13 season match days move from Saturday to Sunday forcing many players to choose between Rugby League and the Community Football team they’ve played with since they were toddlers. Which sport do you think the non Scholarship players choose?

We create another precipice after 1 year in Scholarship where many are not offered their 2nd year and over the cliff they go!

Then there’s a 3rd cliff edge at the end of Scholarship when the lads are still playing in an U16s League. If they’re not offered an Academy contract many walk away from the game, go to College, take a job and find other things to do like girlfriends etc. The rose tinted view from the RFL is that they’ll go back to their Community Club and continue to play but take a look at how many U17s teams there are in our game to see the reality.

Just for completeness, at age 18 we currently release the majority of Academy players because they’re not offered a Super League deal. Once again, the vast majority exit the game, take a job, go out with their mates etc...

The current system is not designed to keep players in the game, it’s not geared in a way that caters for late maturation or late developers in terms of a mature mentality and uptake of core skills.

I see no reason why, under the system I’m proposing that video analysis can’t be part of a players development. Access to nutritional advice can be obtained via Community clubs, IF the RFL supports the new pathways in the right way. Regional training camps would still give young players access to Professional Coaches including Strength & Conditioning professionals. 

By providing Representative opportunities from age 14, players would also have access to a higher level of coaching, a higher level of competition and would begin the process of adapting to ELITE team training camps. That experience would be essential to the players who progress through the pathway all the way to Internationals at U18.

As things stand in our England Academy for example, for many of the players it’s the first time they’ve ever been in a Representative training camp. Under my system they will have had experience of camps at City Rep level at 14 years old, City and County Rep levels at 16 years old before being asked to attend Rep camps leading to Test matches against the Kiwis and Aussies at 18 years old. Their familiarity with Elite Rep training camps and they’re ability to adapt to a different coach with a different game plan will stand them in good stead.

Unlike Scholarships and Academies, If a player misses out at age 14 he is not cast adrift by the game and there is a pathway still to follow.

Beyond the age of 18 and at the end of Academy, players not offered a Super League deal can still have a chance to progress and develop via the U23s competition. Even players who have never been part of any Rep teams from 14 years old onward can be brought in to play U23s.

The key is to engage players when they are young!

When I was 12 I attended a trial to play for Wakefield Schools and at the time in my mind it was massive! I was selected and went on to play against Rep sides from Wigan, Hull, Leeds, Bradford, Warrington & St Helens. I was captivated by the sport from that point forward! Another facet of those City Rep games was playing against lads I’d never played against before either for school or my Community Club. I’m still friends with a number of lads that I played with for Yorkshire at age 13

We don’t offer that to our young players anymore!

You say the standard of player would fall, I could not disagree more!

The standard of the players coming through a similar system to that which I propose was far higher than that of today’s players, sorry it’s true!

I believe we would broaden the base of the pyramid and what’s more we would retain more players within the system! Couple that with a lighter touch from the Pro game till the players are 16 years old and better support for the Community Game in terms of Elite Regional Camps offering S&C, nutrition and skilled coaches and we might just begin to regrow the quantity and quality of players.

Edited by OMEGA
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Thanks for the detailed answer @OMEGA, particularly with regard to the shortcomings of the current pathway. I now appreciate that the current system does not encourage youngsters to remain in the game. 

A lot of what you say makes sense... But surely you are not telling me that leaving kids with their community clubs, and sending them to periodic rep camps is going to produce the same level of athlete (physically) as having them in a SL academy environment? 

Also my point around union remains. Just look at the thread on here about the Welsh youngsters being pulled by both codes (and union usually winning). Surely any ambitious parents are going to push their kids towards a pro academy environment in Union (Sale Sharks or whoever) ahead of a few regional camps (where he may or may not be selected) in Rugby League?? A quick glance at various RL groups I am on, shows me that a number of talented (rep level) kids are already being picked up by union academies. That would surely become a flood under your proposal? 

 

 

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5 hours ago, The Frying Scotsman said:

50 years ago?

OK, but they would now be playing against professionals. Not against guys who worked the same jobs that they did, and got paid match fees and win bonuses. 

Things have moved on. 

And look at the state of the game. When the was just one league  (about 36 teams) every club ran a seconds team.  I remember them having   Yorks and Lancs secondary league tables The guys playing in these loved to step up and play first grade.

All the teams played each other at least once.  Clubs like Leeds  and Wigan played played against the likes of Batley and Dewsbury. I have seen  gates of around 20 odd thousand at the Mount. Imagine how the teams mentioned would be if they got gates some were like that today.

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, The Frying Scotsman said:

Wouldn't this just push ambitious kids (and parents) towards union academies? If we left RL kids to develop at community clubs, then their development would be miles behind Australian youngsters, and also union academy kids, who would have benefited from professional coaching, professional S&C, quality medical, professional sport science, video analysis etc etc. They can get all that in Union, so many would simply move across. 

The standard of players produced would rapidly fall across all pillars: Technical, Physical, Psychological and probably Tactical. Additionally, standards word fall against the competition (Australia). 

Ambitious families are already doing this because they see a clear pathway to the top unfortunately in union. Our game is hampered by the insular attitudes of the top clubs and an inability to break the private school/ university clique. In Cumbria the presence of Newcastle Falcons academy aided by the big private schools with sports scholarships such as Sedbergh,austin friars etc are attracting some of the best young athletes. There are plenty potential players for super league ac cross the whole country the sport needs to actively find them

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9 hours ago, Wakefield Ram said:

Assuming a club needs another 20 players to run reserves that's c240 extra players in the pro game compared to now. 

What effect would that have on top level amateur game? 

They would use their first team fringe players so yes an increase but not that many.

Saints signed 7 reserves players, filled a team easy with 1st teamers and a few U19s

 

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3 hours ago, frank said:

And look at the state of the game. When the was just one league  (about 36 teams) every club ran a seconds team.  I remember them having   Yorks and Lancs secondary league tables The guys playing in these loved to step up and play first grade.

All the teams played each other at least once.  Clubs like Leeds  and Wigan played played against the likes of Batley and Dewsbury. I have seen  gates of around 20 odd thousand at the Mount. Imagine how the teams mentioned would be if they got gates some were like that today.

 

 

 

So you are advocating a return to all clubs being part time, with the best players going to Australia or Rugby Union? Seems like a plan.

The chances of anyone outside Super League running a reserve grade once the money gets cut is slim. Some probably won't survive at all at semi-pro level. The only advantage of SL clubs running them would be the end of Dual Reg. 

We wouldn't even be discussing this if there were enough players in the game, or enough money. We have neither. Reserves and Academies pull players from the Community game and disillusion them after they spit them back out. That's where the players come from. It's a vicious circle.

Rather than lose League One altogether, I would consider putting SL U23 sides in there. No promotion, obviously. I know it's not the "British Way" (which appears to be "purity ahead of success") but it works in European football leagues. The best U23 sides would progress to their playoffs, the best club sides would proceed to theirs. This may be the best of both worlds. 

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"I am the avenging angel; I come with wings unfurled, I come with claws extended from halfway round the world. I am the God Almighty, I am the howling wind. I care not for your family; I care not for your kin. I come in search of terror, though terror is my own; I come in search of vengeance for crimes and crimes unknown. I care not for your children, I care not for your wives, I care not for your country, I care not for your lives." - (c) Jim Boyes - "The Avenging Angel"

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9 hours ago, yipyee said:

Dual reg is far better for the game

 

Dual Reg is great for small clubs within spitting distance of an SL club. It's a disaster for expansion.

"I am the avenging angel; I come with wings unfurled, I come with claws extended from halfway round the world. I am the God Almighty, I am the howling wind. I care not for your family; I care not for your kin. I come in search of terror, though terror is my own; I come in search of vengeance for crimes and crimes unknown. I care not for your children, I care not for your wives, I care not for your country, I care not for your lives." - (c) Jim Boyes - "The Avenging Angel"

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4 hours ago, The Frying Scotsman said:

Thanks for the detailed answer @OMEGA, particularly with regard to the shortcomings of the current pathway. I now appreciate that the current system does not encourage youngsters to remain in the game. 

A lot of what you say makes sense... But surely you are not telling me that leaving kids with their community clubs, and sending them to periodic rep camps is going to produce the same level of athlete (physically) as having them in a SL academy environment? 

Also my point around union remains. Just look at the thread on here about the Welsh youngsters being pulled by both codes (and union usually winning). Surely any ambitious parents are going to push their kids towards a pro academy environment in Union (Sale Sharks or whoever) ahead of a few regional camps (where he may or may not be selected) in Rugby League?? A quick glance at various RL groups I am on, shows me that a number of talented (rep level) kids are already being picked up by union academies. That would surely become a flood under your proposal? 

 

 

He is only suggesting 14-16, physical development really starts in the academy so missing out little there.

For me the proposal makes sense, my only inclusion would be the pro game/clubs having an impact more from 14-16, running camps and competitions of some sort. They are important to push the elite 

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1 hour ago, tim2 said:

Dual Reg is great for small clubs within spitting distance of an SL club. It's a disaster for expansion.

How so?

You dual reg with a local club in the tier below, expansion clubs can also do this. Disnt London used tp dual reg with hemel

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6 hours ago, OMEGA said:

The only change is from the ages of 14 to 16 where we currently create a number of cliff edges over which many of our juniors fall. 

We currently select Scholarship players during their U13 season, the focus of......

I haven't copied all your comments as it was long.... but interesting and leads me to question.

You paint quite a stark set of drop off's leading to loss of players. Do the clubs not provide any support programmes to those youngsters to manage them into whatever appropriate clubs in the community with a goal to keeping them in playing in the sport thus helping to strengthen the community game.

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1 hour ago, redjonn said:

I haven't copied all your comments as it was long.... but interesting and leads me to question.

You paint quite a stark set of drop off's leading to loss of players. Do the clubs not provide any support programmes to those youngsters to manage them into whatever appropriate clubs in the community with a goal to keeping them in playing in the sport thus helping to strengthen the community game.

The short answer is no!

I’d love to say yes but while some clubs are marginally better than others they pay lip service to the player to help ease the disappointment. The club might offer advice about areas of the players game for him to work on and they might even promise to monitor a player back at his community club. The truth is that they don’t, their interest in the player ended when they made the decision to release him and as he walks out of the door their eyes turn back to the players still in the system.

Some clubs will work harder for the player, they may circulate his details to the other  Clubs Youth Systems or if he’s Academy age they may notify Championship 1 & 2 Clubs in an effort to help the player into the pro game. The clubs that do this are the ones who run a genuine Youth System which, while primarily is for their club, also feel a duty to serve the wider game. You can probably guess which clubs I’m talking about as they’re generally the ‘Outstanding’ rated ones.

Its another good reason to run a proper Reserve competition!

Edited by OMEGA
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26 minutes ago, OMEGA said:

The short answer is no!

I’d love to say yes but while some clubs are marginally better than others they pay lip service to the player to help ease the disappointment. The club might offer advice about areas of the players game for him to work on and they might even promise to monitor a player back at his community club. The truth is that they don’t, their interest in the player ended when they made the decision to release him and as he walks out of the door their eyes turn back to the players still in the system.

Some clubs will work harder for the player, they may circulate his details to the other  Clubs Youth Systems or if he’s Academy age they may notify Championship 1 & 2 Clubs in an effort to help the player into the pro game. The clubs that do this are the ones who run a genuine Youth System which, while primarily is for their club, also feel a duty to serve the wider game. You can probably guess which clubs I’m talking about as they’re generally the ‘Outstanding’ rated ones.

Its another good reason to run a proper Reserve competition!

thanks for taking the time to answer.

 

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3 hours ago, yipyee said:

How so?

You dual reg with a local club in the tier below, expansion clubs can also do this. Disnt London used tp dual reg with hemel

Pretty poor example given where Hemel are now. What about Skolars, Coventry, West Wales, Gateshead? 

It's appaling for team spirit and development when someone who doesn't train with the team shows up for a match to replace a local player who does on "orders" from the higher club.

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"I am the avenging angel; I come with wings unfurled, I come with claws extended from halfway round the world. I am the God Almighty, I am the howling wind. I care not for your family; I care not for your kin. I come in search of terror, though terror is my own; I come in search of vengeance for crimes and crimes unknown. I care not for your children, I care not for your wives, I care not for your country, I care not for your lives." - (c) Jim Boyes - "The Avenging Angel"

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4 hours ago, OMEGA said:

The short answer is no!

I’d love to say yes but while some clubs are marginally better than others they pay lip service to the player to help ease the disappointment. The club might offer advice about areas of the players game for him to work on and they might even promise to monitor a player back at his community club. The truth is that they don’t, their interest in the player ended when they made the decision to release him and as he walks out of the door their eyes turn back to the players still in the system.

Some clubs will work harder for the player, they may circulate his details to the other  Clubs Youth Systems or if he’s Academy age they may notify Championship 1 & 2 Clubs in an effort to help the player into the pro game. The clubs that do this are the ones who run a genuine Youth System which, while primarily is for their club, also feel a duty to serve the wider game. You can probably guess which clubs I’m talking about as they’re generally the ‘Outstanding’ rated ones.

Its another good reason to run a proper Reserve competition!

One of several very good and  insightful replies and match my own experiences 

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19 hours ago, The Frying Scotsman said:

Wouldn't this just push ambitious kids (and parents) towards union academies? If we left RL kids to develop at community clubs, then their development would be miles behind Australian youngsters, and also union academy kids, who would have benefited from professional coaching, professional S&C, quality medical, professional sport science, video analysis etc etc. They can get all that in Union, so many would simply move across. 

The standard of players produced would rapidly fall across all pillars: Technical, Physical, Psychological and probably Tactical. Additionally, standards word fall against the competition (Australia). 

I’m off the belief that at a similar age children signed by union academics have to play for their community weeks three weekends out of the four. 
 

The academics take advantage of the school holidays etc to really develop them 

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6 hours ago, tim2 said:

Pretty poor example given where Hemel are now. What about Skolars, Coventry, West Wales, Gateshead? 

It's appaling for team spirit and development when someone who doesn't train with the team shows up for a match to replace a local player who does on "orders" from the higher club.

Not really its when the local dual reg ended that hemel looked elsewere. Dual reg ended as London were relegated.

Dual reg should have been more than show up for a game.. there should be more linked up with the parent club

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On 23/08/2021 at 16:26, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

The reality is clubs just don’t have enough players to run a reserve side, Leeds v Huddersfield last week had both clubs with so many injuries scraping a team together. A  halfway house could be mergers at reserve team level. 

The following would give an 8 team reserve league, Leeds and Bradford, Castleford and Wakefield, Wigan and Leigh, Warrington and Widnes, Hull and Hull, Huddersfield and Halifax, St Helens and Salford, combined Championship side . People won’t like this solution but the reality is reserve grade rugby league was scrapped to save money as clubs could run smaller squads, this is a solution where that can happen and we still have a reserve league.

Catalans and Toulouse have reserve sides in the French Leagues, if reserve league is rejected by the majority the big clubs that produce all the players, Leeds, St Helens and Wigan could enter League One with their reserve sides.

Why has every conversation got to be about the SL teams?

We are talking here about "A teams" for every team and you bring it back to top 8 teams - there are 28 other teams out there as well !

There are plenty of players around- unless you only count full time or Elite quality players?

SL dont really need "A" teams as you have academy teams, whereas most of championship and L1 are not allowed academies or A teams.

Any team without academies or A teams are hampered in signing players because they can only play 18 per week - so if you have a squad of 25 to 30 then obviously 7 to 12 are not getting a game and therefore some want to back to the amateur ranks to play rugby , but would probably be happy with an A team game until they are given the opportunity in the first team.

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On 23/08/2021 at 22:50, The Frying Scotsman said:

50 years ago?

OK, but they would now be playing against professionals. Not against guys who worked the same jobs that they did, and got paid match fees and win bonuses. 

Things have moved on. 

No

Play your own league Championship teams reveres play each other and  same in L1 

SL academies play each other

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