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17th NRL Club


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Departing Souths coach Wayne Bennett is set to join the Redcliffe Dolphins when they are officially announced as the NRL’s Brisbane expansion team this month.

The Dolphins who will adopt a new name to replace Redcliffe are set to be unveiled as the NRL’s 17th team to join the competition in 2023.

It is understood Bennett is close with signing with Redcliffe, who this month will be announced as Brisbane’s second team,” Channel 7 reported.

Bennett appears to be going home to Queensland after this season with Jason Demetriou taking over as head coach of South Sydney.

Bennett has been linked with a role with the Rabbitohs next season although not in a head coaching capacity with the club keen to hold onto his services.

However it would be difficult for Bennett to juggle dual roles if he is charged with building the Dolphins from scratch next year for their NRL debut in Round 1, 2023.

Bennett has long been tipped to be the coach of either of the three expansion bids, but is set to beat out former Cowboys and Maroons coach Paul Green for the winning bid Redcliffe.

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Reportedly a fiery meeting between NRL and the clubs.

It has previously been revealed that the NRL doesn't need the express approval of the other clubs to expand the competition, however, it's understood the preference of NRL CEO Andrew Abdo and Australian Rugby League Commission chairman Peter V'Landys was to have them on board.

The clubs were reportedly concerned about a 17th team eroding their own financial support from the NRL. However, it has been revealed that a deal between Foxtel and the NRL will bankroll the franchise, potentially allowing expanded grants to the remaining clubs each year for at least the next five years.

This will bring in extra revenue in the form of 12 extra games per season, while it was also revealed that the Brisbane Broncos may have a decrease in free to air games thanks to the new Queensland franchise.

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  • Graham changed the title to 17th NRL Club
7 hours ago, Graham said:

The NRL is set to officially move to a 17 team competition from 2023.

It's just too bad that it's almost certainly going to be another small suburban club that exists exclusively off the back of leagues club and broadcasting grants.

We keep making the same mistakes over and over and then wondering why only 1 or 2 of the clubs are profitable businesses, why our attendance has stagnated, why male participation of the full contact version of the sport is in steep decline, why the average age of NRL fans keeps going steadily up, why the AFL makes so much more revenue than the NRL, why it's clubs are so much bigger, why it's grassroots are so much better funded, etc, etc.

It's quite sad really.

Edited by The Great Dane
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4 hours ago, The Great Dane said:

It's just too bad that it's almost certainly going to be another small suburban club that exists exclusively off the back of leagues club and broadcasting grants.

We keep making the same mistakes over and over and then wondering why only 1 or 2 of the clubs are profitable businesses, why our attendance has stagnated, why male participation of the full contact version of the sport is in steep decline, why the average age of NRL fans keeps going steadily up, why the AFL makes so much more revenue than the NRL, why it's clubs are so much bigger, why it's grassroots are so much better funded, etc, etc.

It's quite sad really.

The AFL admitted Fremantle and Port Adelaide are these not small suburban clubs too?

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Just now, rlno1 said:

The AFL admitted Fremantle and Port Adelaide are these not small suburban clubs too?

The Fremantle region of the city (south west) represents a significant portion of Perths population. People also forget that they took about a decade before they carved out their niche, and that that success coincided with the Eagles selling out their season tickets for the first time.

Port Adelaide is the least sustainable of the heartland teams from outside of Melbourne. They've had serious financial issues throughout their history, and are still reliant on significant financial support from the AFL. Part of the reason why they've struggled is because a large portion of Adelaide's population simply refuses to support Port Adelaide for historical reasons, which is something that Redcliffe will inevitably struggle with also.

Both those clubs also exist in vastly different market conditions than anything seen in the NRL. Namely both their closest competitors, the West Coast Eagles and the Adelaide Crows, have sold out their allocation of ticketed memberships for a decade or more now.

That creates demand that the Dockers and Power can fulfil, and results in them siphoning off fans whom aren't willing to wait years for a ticketed membership to become available. It's a strategy that has been very successful for both of them, but that simply won't be available to a 2nd NRL club in Brisbane.

Both of them are also bigger than any NRL club, which shows you how far the NRL is behind the AFL when almost all of it's "small" clubs are bigger and more successful than the NRL's biggest.

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10 hours ago, rlno1 said:

i read your last paragraph....Whats to say The Dolphins wont get bigger once they are in the NRL...infact they will get bigger. 

Sure they'll get bigger, but simply being bigger than they are now (which wouldn't be hard frankly) isn't a good measurement of success, and doesn't mean that they'll be competitive in the market place.

In fact it seems pretty clear that the whole reason why they are the favourites is because News is backing them because they won't be a serious commercial competitor to the Broncos. Which is a terrible way to run a business, especially a franchising business.

https://www.sen.com.au/news/2021/10/08/they-would-cannibalise-the-broncos-why-brisbane-prefer-redcliffe-bid/

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This week then...

Quote

The Redcliffe Dolphins will reportedly be announced as the NRL’s 17th team this week.

According to a News Corp report and Triple M’s Ben Dobbin, the Dolphins are the preferred option, beating out the Firehawks and Jets to win the expansion race and will enter the competition in 2023.

It comes after the NRL’s Expansion Assessment Committee met last week to analyse all three bids.

 

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The NRL needs to get back to how the NSWRL ran the comp every team playing each other twice in home & away rounds. The best way to do that is expand the comp asap to 24 teams divided into 2 divisions with promotion & relegation involving 2 teams in each division every year. You get competitive or you languish in 2nd division. 

Edited by R L Winger

2021.jpg

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The club was founded in 1947 and accepted in the Brisbane first grade competition in 1959 before winning its first of 10 premierships in 1965. The Dolphins have played in the Queensland Cup since 1996 and won six premierships in that competition, most recently in 2018.

 

The Dolphins have produced several Queensland and Australia stars including Arthur Beetson and Petero Civoniceva.

 

Redcliffe is 35km north-east of the Brisbane CBD. A similar comparison in Sydney is Narrabeen.

 

The majority of games will be at Suncorp Stadium but Redcliffe has its own 11,500-seat stadium where they’ll occasionally play, plus and a handful of games at Sunshine Coast Stadium.

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The worst kept secret in rugby league is out with master coach Wayne Bennett to coach the Dolphins on a three-year deal from 2023.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported outgoing Rabbitohs coach Bennett has agreed to terms with the NRL’s expansion franchise when they enter the competition in two years’ time.

The 71-year-old has hired veteran agent Sam Ayoub to secure the deal which is for two seasons with the potential for a third in 2025.

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Dolphins:

While a number of Storm players may be on the hit list, Craig Bellamy has promised to block any contracted Melbourne players from leaving early for the new franchise.

Bennett, who is expected to sign a three-year deal with the Redcliffe-based club shortly, has spoken publicly about his desire to build a team with a “Queensland look”.

Storm five-eighth Cameron Munster would be one target along with fellow Origin stars Christian Welch, Felise Kaufusi and Harry Grant.

Brandon Smith has also been linked to the new franchise as he looks to make a big call on his future.

Welch, Kaufusi and Smith are both off-contract at the end of 2022 while Grant has a mutual option for 2023.

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