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9 minutes ago, Dave T said:

I have seen nothing that is bad about the push on diversity in sport. I think it has made the entertainment options on offer far richer. 

I think it is a bit of a perfect storm at the moment that women's sport is taking advantage of. I think there is a push around inequality in society which helps, allowing for more investment and interest to be cultivated. It also comes at a time when sports rights can be difficult for some companies. If we strip out all the new women's sport that is shown, there would be a lot less live sport on TV, and Sky, BT and the BBC have embraced this to get plenty of filler. This is a challenge for men's RL as we have traditionally been a filler, whereas other sports are getting that now. 

But despite RL being rather behind on this stuff, in 2021 we have had the BBC cover the women's and wheelchair Challenge Cups live, Sky to cover the SL finals for Women and Wheelchair, in addition to weekly highlights and we would have seen tens of games live from the women's and wheelchair world cups. 

I think we need to push even harder in 2022, more double headers and push for more TV coverage as cameras will be at each ground. 

We should also remember that it is in its infancy, but this kind of coverage can really expediate growth and improve standards more quickly than normal. 

For me, a world with more women's sport is a better world. I enjoy watching plenty of it, although I don't bother with football. 

This is an interesting take.

Sorry to bring us all back to hell, but I have been reading a piece by Karen Carney (ex player and now broadcaster) who pinpoints the success of international women’s football as being the real turning point for the domestic game.

Many of the comments below are easily applicable to rugby league where perhaps we are at I believe and could learn:

“The women’s game has gone from a vicious cycle to a virtuous one since the inception of the WSL. Beforehand the lack of funding and exposure meant the product was not what it should have been, but this has changed. Having major international tournaments visible has been a great boost, because it helps showcase the quality within the women’s game, which then attracts sponsors and money into the sport to keep it evolving and improving.

Previously, it was a hard sell to get people to watch a sport that when seen on TV was played in front of small crowds. Getting excited about what is happening on the pitch is not easy when the atmosphere is absent but the WSL has helped this grow in conjunction with England’s successes. The penny dropped in 2012 when 80,000 turned up at Wembley for the women’s final at the Olympics and English football has capitalised on this.

The 2019 Women’s World Cup was another turning point, proving the appetite for the women’s game. For England’s semi-final against the USAthere were more than 53,000 inside the stadium and 11.7 million watched a slick, professional broadcast at home, giving a great image of women’s football. It made household names of the likes of Ellen White and Lucy Bronze, which aided momentum.”

 

 

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14 minutes ago, Gerrumonside ref said:

This is an interesting take.

Sorry to bring us all back to hell, but I have been reading a piece by Karen Carney (ex player and now broadcaster) who pinpoints the success of international women’s football as being the real turning point for the domestic game.

Many of the comments below are easily applicable to rugby league where perhaps we are at I believe and could learn:

“The women’s game has gone from a vicious cycle to a virtuous one since the inception of the WSL. Beforehand the lack of funding and exposure meant the product was not what it should have been, but this has changed. Having major international tournaments visible has been a great boost, because it helps showcase the quality within the women’s game, which then attracts sponsors and money into the sport to keep it evolving and improving.

Previously, it was a hard sell to get people to watch a sport that when seen on TV was played in front of small crowds. Getting excited about what is happening on the pitch is not easy when the atmosphere is absent but the WSL has helped this grow in conjunction with England’s successes. The penny dropped in 2012 when 80,000 turned up at Wembley for the women’s final at the Olympics and English football has capitalised on this.

The 2019 Women’s World Cup was another turning point, proving the appetite for the women’s game. For England’s semi-final against the USAthere were more than 53,000 inside the stadium and 11.7 million watched a slick, professional broadcast at home, giving a great image of women’s football. It made household names of the likes of Ellen White and Lucy Bronze, which aided momentum.”

 

 

I should add, I'm not disagreeing with the other points being made here around the growth, I am adding to them. I think some of the things individual sports have done has been very impressive. 

But one of the big changes is that broadcasters have opened their eyes and minds a lot more imho. 

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17 minutes ago, Gerrumonside ref said:

This is an interesting take.

Sorry to bring us all back to hell, but I have been reading a piece by Karen Carney (ex player and now broadcaster) who pinpoints the success of international women’s football as being the real turning point for the domestic game.

Many of the comments below are easily applicable to rugby league where perhaps we are at I believe and could learn:

On this point, specifically I think the World Cup is a huge opportunity for us. Based on the immaturity of women's RL I think we are relatively fortunate that the BBC are being so supportive (that pushing against an open door point I am making), but with an extra year I think we need a hell of a lot of focus on this tournament and it could be a game changer for us. 

I'll be looking to go to a few of the women's games, and as you say, Big crowds showing a credible sport on the BBC could do wonders for us. 

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19 hours ago, Damien said:

Even women like Laura Davies in Golf and Alison Fisher in Snooker were household names, that is before the likes of athletes and tennis players.

I've been mulling this. Partly because I know that Laura Davies was a big name but I can't ever remember seeing her in competition live on the TV. There were three English winners of the Women's British Open in the 1980s and I'm not entirely convinced that anyone outside their immediate families could name the other two.

The fact that her name was known appears to have been more to do with the quirk of who became famous and got on to the Question of Sport circuit (for example) rather than particularly deep coverage of women's golf.

It's an irrelevant digression at this time and I'm not making any particular point - just trying to tally my memory with the reality.

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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1 hour ago, Dave T said:

I have seen nothing that is bad about the push on diversity in sport. I think it has made the entertainment options on offer far richer. 

I think it is a bit of a perfect storm at the moment that women's sport is taking advantage of. I think there is a push around inequality in society which helps, allowing for more investment and interest to be cultivated. It also comes at a time when sports rights can be difficult for some companies. If we strip out all the new women's sport that is shown, there would be a lot less live sport on TV, and Sky, BT and the BBC have embraced this to get plenty of filler. This is a challenge for men's RL as we have traditionally been a filler, whereas other sports are getting that now. 

But despite RL being rather behind on this stuff, in 2021 we have had the BBC cover the women's and wheelchair Challenge Cups live, Sky to cover the SL finals for Women and Wheelchair, in addition to weekly highlights and we would have seen tens of games live from the women's and wheelchair world cups. 

I think we need to push even harder in 2022, more double headers and push for more TV coverage as cameras will be at each ground. 

We should also remember that it is in its infancy, but this kind of coverage can really expediate growth and improve standards more quickly than normal. 

For me, a world with more women's sport is a better world. I enjoy watching plenty of it, although I don't bother with football. 

I'll just add - as someone who has been a supporter of several organisations pushing both to increase women's participation in sport and the visibility of that sport - that this perfect storm didn't just happen. A lot of people, over many decades, made it their absolute focus and made themselves very annoying and unpopular in doing so.

To nick a quote from a Scandinavian writer that I like to use a lot: you'll do all the leg work, you'll get everything in place, you'll make sure that when the time comes you are ready, and then when the time comes, nobody will see any of that and they will call you lucky.

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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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14 minutes ago, gingerjon said:

I'll just add - as someone who has been a supporter of several organisations pushing both to increase women's participation in sport and the visibility of that sport - that this perfect storm didn't just happen. A lot of people, over many decades, made it their absolute focus and made themselves very annoying and unpopular in doing so.

To nick a quote from a Scandinavian writer that I like to use a lot: you'll do all the leg work, you'll get everything in place, you'll make sure that when the time comes you are ready, and then when the time comes, nobody will see any of that and they will call you lucky.

That's a very good quote. My post is over-simplistic because I don't go into that level of detail but it's spot on. 

I find it amazing that only a few years ago female tennis players were having to fight for equal pay, and even now some don't like it. 

I certainly don't dismiss these things as lucky. I will add though that RL is benefiting from this shift, and I'm not sure we have been at the forefront of this battle. 

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1 hour ago, Dave T said:

That's a very good quote. My post is over-simplistic because I don't go into that level of detail but it's spot on. 

I find it amazing that only a few years ago female tennis players were having to fight for equal pay, and even now some don't like it. 

I certainly don't dismiss these things as lucky. I will add though that RL is benefiting from this shift, and I'm not sure we have been at the forefront of this battle. 

To be fair, woman tennis players were never under paid as they play a lot less games than men do. Even though the likes of Wimbledon pay them equally on paper if you look at the number of games each play the Woman are massively overpaid compared to the men.

Saying that Womans tennis is great and as good to watch as the mens but equal it isn't in terms of money.

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20 minutes ago, Mr Frisky said:

To be fair, woman tennis players were never under paid as they play a lot less games than men do. Even though the likes of Wimbledon pay them equally on paper if you look at the number of games each play the Woman are massively overpaid compared to the men.

Saying that Womans tennis is great and as good to watch as the mens but equal it isn't in terms of money.

This idea that women's tennis players are overpaid or equally paid based on sets played is a bit of a myth.

The majors see men play best of 5 sets and women best of 3 but the vast majority of the tennis circuit in both the men's and women's game are best of 3.

Take the 2021 Canadian Open as an example of a non-major... both are best of 3 sets and the prize money on offer for the men was $3.5M US while for the women it was $1.8M.

The women may have played 8 weeks a year for comparatively better pay (dividing prize money by sets played for the 4 majors... although even that will depend on the prize pot) but for the rest of the year they are certainly not overpaid... in fact paid less for the same amount of effort is probably the best description.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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1 hour ago, Mr Frisky said:

To be fair, woman tennis players were never under paid as they play a lot less games than men do. Even though the likes of Wimbledon pay them equally on paper if you look at the number of games each play the Woman are massively overpaid compared to the men.

Saying that Womans tennis is great and as good to watch as the mens but equal it isn't in terms of money.

We shouldnt pay by the minute though. 

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3 hours ago, Dave T said:

On this point, specifically I think the World Cup is a huge opportunity for us. Based on the immaturity of women's RL I think we are relatively fortunate that the BBC are being so supportive (that pushing against an open door point I am making), but with an extra year I think we need a hell of a lot of focus on this tournament and it could be a game changer for us. 

I'll be looking to go to a few of the women's games, and as you say, Big crowds showing a credible sport on the BBC could do wonders for us. 

Once an unwelcome change is accepted as inevitable, it`s wise to consider whether it could be turned to advantage.

With that philosophy in mind, I`ve been wondering ever since the postponement of the WC about the make-up of the women`s competition.

There was some anger, particularly from their coach Adrian Vowles, when Fiji weren`t included. In their fixtures they have clearly demonstrated that they are stronger than some of the teams who have been invited. Presumably the costs of another Southern Hemisphere entrant told against them.

Since the initial tournament announcement, we`ve seen tangible development in Wales with the national side going reasonable well against England and Cardiff Demons winning the Southern WSL.

And this year there was a 5 team women`s comp in Ireland. I saw some of their GF and the winners Dublin City Exiles looked to have a number of useful players. As with the Welsh, other players could make rapid improvements as they play more League.

Is it too late to add Wales and Ireland to the women`s RLWC? Both could be roughly as competitive as Brazil, Canada, France, PNG, Cook Islands. The costs would be relatively small, and there could be positive post-tournament ripple effects for Women`s RL across the British Isles and France.

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6 hours ago, Johnoco said:

I’ll be honest, that’s a new one on me, I will have a gander.

That’s presumably the clip of Hendrix where he stops playing Hey Joe (IIRC) and does an impromptu version of Creams’ Sunshine of Your Love…..but this is definitely thread drift. 

 

Am I to take it you know nothing of the artistic endeavours of the Plaster Casters?

I could provide more information. There`s a typical Seething Wells phrase from the article that has stuck in my mind. It would get past the filter but probably be removed by the moderators. 

Jimi did Voodoo Child on the Lulu show, then things unfolded as described. Apparently the reason he smiles just into the bit of Hey Joe they did was because he broke a string.

As you say - definitely thread drift.

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2 hours ago, unapologetic pedant said:

The RFL have a habit of not being at the forefront of anything requiring imaginative thinking.

Yep, and not particularly great at capitalising on opportunities - which is a bad combination 😁

But hopefully this is one we will do well with. 

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3 hours ago, unapologetic pedant said:

Once an unwelcome change is accepted as inevitable, it`s wise to consider whether it could be turned to advantage.

With that philosophy in mind, I`ve been wondering ever since the postponement of the WC about the make-up of the women`s competition.

There was some anger, particularly from their coach Adrian Vowles, when Fiji weren`t included. In their fixtures they have clearly demonstrated that they are stronger than some of the teams who have been invited. Presumably the costs of another Southern Hemisphere entrant told against them.

Since the initial tournament announcement, we`ve seen tangible development in Wales with the national side going reasonable well against England and Cardiff Demons winning the Southern WSL.

And this year there was a 5 team women`s comp in Ireland. I saw some of their GF and the winners Dublin City Exiles looked to have a number of useful players. As with the Welsh, other players could make rapid improvements as they play more League.

Is it too late to add Wales and Ireland to the women`s RLWC? Both could be roughly as competitive as Brazil, Canada, France, PNG, Cook Islands. The costs would be relatively small, and there could be positive post-tournament ripple effects for Women`s RL across the British Isles and France.

Probably too late unless anyone pulls out, but they'll also be better gaining more experience before being thrown in.

 

They had the guy from Brazil on Forty 20 just before it was postponed, an interesting watch. 

 

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9 hours ago, clogdance said:

FFS This is the third snide post about Women's football you've posted. Something against Women have you?

Scotland Women's football on YouTube,  2 years ago  206K views.

England RL on YouTube also 2 years ago 4K views 

 

Edited by HawkMan
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2 minutes ago, RigbyLuger said:

While you're comparing the official Scotland account to an unofficial one, we do need to do much much better with our output on social media.

I agree totally,  the point is moaning about other sports getting headlines achieves nothing for RL.

There are some who probably think that the scene below really happens,  every January 1st.

Three men nattily dressed in suits and dark glasses enter undisclosed location, a room in which is a desk. Sitting at desk is a media Baron, known as just His Lordship. The three men, for anonymity purposes are known as Mr Football (MF), Mr Cricket (MC) and Mr Rugby Union (MR), all carry attache cases, Mr F's is a tad bigger than the others.

Lordship " well gentleman,  you know why you're here,  it is payment day"

MR " I'm not sure this is necessary anymore "

Lordship " come now Mister Rugby Union,  you of all people know what would happen if the people get a whiff of Rugby League,  your sport will suffer the most. So pay up. And you Mr Football,  any doubts?"

MF " no...let's get it over with "

Lordship " I see you've been sensible and brought more cash, yes there's now Men and Women's Football you want us to push, and suppress Rugby League for you. Remember gents, once the public see Rugby League there'll be no stopping it, you need us"

The three gents open their cases, his Lordship takes out bundles of cash and sniffs them.

Lordship " ahhh...the smell of the green stuff...lovely "

Mr Cricket pipes up,

MC " remember the hundred this year "

Lordship " yes fine, we'll push it, God knows why you want to dilute your game further, but you pay we'll push it"

His Lordship takes out IPAD and shows gents, 

Lordship " on here are the juicy titbits and amazing stories the Rugby League journos have collated for us, the poor saps, just press here where it says delete, and they're all gone , who wants to do it?

Rugby Union man leans forward, 

MR " me please...please,  since my wife left me it's the only thrill I get"

Rugby Union man presses delete,

MR " aaaahhh.......ooohhhh.."

Lordship " OK gents Rugby League suppressed for another year,  see you next year "

Mr F,C and R troop out,  after they've gone, his Lordship picks up phone.

Lordship ( phone) " yes they paid up, idiots,  they really think they pay us for keeping Rugby League down, when it's down to RFL incompetence ,you know the saying,  one born every minute "

Well it could happen..?

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It's down to us to promote and make our top players more accessible to the wider media. Do we bang on the door of Question of Sport or whatever to get our more eloquent stars on there? I don't watch the show, but they had a snowboarder on this week, surely we have someone at that level?

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1 hour ago, RigbyLuger said:

It's down to us to promote and make our top players more accessible to the wider media. Do we bang on the door of Question of Sport or whatever to get our more eloquent stars on there? I don't watch the show, but they had a snowboarder on this week, surely we have someone at that level?

We can't even complain about a "London-centric" BBC now, seeing as BBC Sport is smack in the middle of RL land. How many BBC Sport execs have RL club PR managers invited out for a "working lunch" in the last week, month, year or more?

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6 hours ago, HawkMan said:

FFS This is the third snide post about Women's football you've posted. Something against Women have you?

Scotland Women's football on YouTube,  2 years ago  206K views.

England RL on YouTube also 2 years ago 4K views 

 

The "NRL on Nine" highlights of the 2018 women`s NSW/QLD game, the first under the Origin banner, currently has 189k views on YouTube.

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9 minutes ago, unapologetic pedant said:

The "NRL on Nine" highlights of the 2018 women`s NSW/QLD game, the first under the Origin banner, currently has 189k views on YouTube.

The Scotland vs Argentina women's soccer on YouTube has 3.7 million views , but let's not get bogged down with numbers. The point being lots of sports,  some we probably both can't stand deserve to get headlines on the beeb website.  It isn't a conspiracy against TGG that some believe. 

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5 hours ago, RigbyLuger said:

It's down to us to promote and make our top players more accessible to the wider media. Do we bang on the door of Question of Sport or whatever to get our more eloquent stars on there? I don't watch the show, but they had a snowboarder on this week, surely we have someone at that level?

That show (and ones like it) have had RU players on it over the years, yet there hasn’t been a household RU name in well over a decade (J.Wilkinson). Appearing on such shows will do practically zilch to attract people to the game. What attracts people to the game is the on-field product, and it’s on the field where players become stars if the game allows, something neither rugby code today does.

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17 hours ago, clogdance said:

Wikipedia articles:

England women’s football team: 13,357 page views in last 28 days. Page views since 1 July 2015 (as far back as the search goes): 1,985,353 (that’s 876 views per day)

England (mens) rugby league team: 1,481 page views in last 28 days. Page views since 1 July 2015: 360,025 (that’s 160 views per day)

Based on this, RL has less than a fifth of the popularity of women’s football.

Television:

Women’s football team, averaged over 10 million viewing a World Cup quarter final, a game also screened at Glastonbury.

Men’s RL team, averaged 1.5 million for the 2017 RLWC Final.

 

Given that women’s football generates more interest you will be calling for RL coverage to be cut?

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1 hour ago, HawkMan said:

The Scotland vs Argentina women's soccer on YouTube has 3.7 million views , but let's not get bogged down with numbers. The point being lots of sports,  some we probably both can't stand deserve to get headlines on the beeb website.  It isn't a conspiracy against TGG that some believe. 

The point I was making is that the Australian RL social media operation though not perfect still puts ours to shame.

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