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Combined Nations to play England again next year & GB to return


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https://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/sport/rugby-league/england-combined-nations-all-stars-6086230

England are to play the Combined Nations team again mid-season next year. The article also confirms that the Fiji world cup warmup fixture will take place as planned and that there are hopes to have regular games against France. The bit that struck me the most though was where it says Great Britain are pencilled in to play in the next international calender, so I'm guessing that's probably for 2023. Personally I thought the last GB tour completely killed off the concept but apparently not. 

Edited by The Hallucinating Goose
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Great news all round, if the Australians and NZ`ers aren't interested in a viable international programme then we need to create one without them and include as many nations as possible.

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  • The Hallucinating Goose changed the title to Combined Nations to play England again next year & GB to return

GB or England really isn't a major issue. GB remains the stronger brand in my view and it's perplexing that people have decided they are very much against it.

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6 minutes ago, M j M said:

GB or England really isn't a major issue. GB remains the stronger brand in my view and it's perplexing that people have decided they are very much against it.

It may be a stronger brand to some people above a certain age. Even at that plenty are against it returning. Most under 30 will barely recall GB and the recent tour did nothing but weaken what was left of the brand.

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It says the Combined All Stars will be a standalone event so that'll be an improvement, but I hope it's on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon to help attract a decent crowd instead of tucked away midweek or on a Friday night.

Problem with the GB labelling for me is that England barely play as it is so we just aren't building either brand into something substantial. I suspect this will be a tour down under as that seems to be the GB purpose now. Probably 2023 as the NRL won't want their precious assets being away in the deadly northern hemisphere for 2 years running.

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When it comes to GB, I'd be tempted to bring it back just so we can play matches in places like Wales and give them a strong national team to support.

I don't think Wales, Ireland and Scotland being used as stepping stones (which they are now) to England (or for English players who aren't good enough) is going to sell the sport.

Edited by Chris22
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Twitter: @TrylineUK
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12 minutes ago, M j M said:

GB or England really isn't a major issue. GB remains the stronger brand in my view and it's perplexing that people have decided they are very much against it.

It’s just the England team sometimes playing under a different name, which doesn’t strengthen any brand imho. 

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I think there would be a far more legitimate argument for bringing back GB if England were playing 6 times a year, every year. Ditto Wales, Scotland and Ireland. As is some years we barely play and if we do don't necessarily even have a home game. GB creates an either/or in what is a poor international schedule when its place, it it has one, should be in addition to England et al. We are miles away from that. That is before all the legitimate arguments such as its just England under a different name.

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21 minutes ago, M j M said:

GB remains the stronger brand 

Can you provide any evidence whatsoever to back up this view? 
If you look at the last 20’years I believe England games have been far better attended than Great Britain games. If you are going to pull up attendances from 50 years ago you are stuck in the past, times have changed. 

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19 minutes ago, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

Can you provide any evidence whatsoever to back up this view? 
If you look at the last 20’years I believe England games have been far better attended than Great Britain games. If you are going to pull up attendances from 50 years ago you are stuck in the past, times have changed. 

If GB is the stronger brand I dread to think what the attendances on the 2019 tour to NZ and PNG would have been like if the same team played as England rather than GB. 

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1 hour ago, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

Bringing back GB again, I despair, is this game ever going to stop being stuck in the past trying to get back to the 1970’s 

You're that negative you could strip all the fun out of a bowl of rice pudding. 

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Wibble

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1 hour ago, Chris22 said:

When it comes to GB, I'd be tempted to bring it back just so we can play matches in places like Wales and give them a strong national team to support.

I don't think Wales, Ireland and Scotland being used as stepping stones (which they are now) to England (or for English players who aren't good enough) is going to sell the sport.

In the entire history of our sport, GB never played a game in Wales. 

The resurrection of that brand was just old men doing old men things. Leave it in the past, where it belongs.

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In reality, I don't think there is any difference between playing as GB or England, they are pretty much the same thing. 

The issue comes with the inconsistency, if England is our main international team, we can't just call ourselves GB for a year every now and again. 

There has to be a difference between the teams. 

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8 minutes ago, nadera78 said:

In the entire history of our sport, GB never played a game in Wales. 

The resurrection of that brand was just old men doing old men things. Leave it in the past, where it belongs.

Whilst I appreciate the debate has been done to death, I think its important to look at the present too.

I don't think Scotland playing home internationals in Featherstone benefits anyone.

I think it's a hard sell to say "Come and watch great players like Morgan Knowles play for Wales, but he'll drop us in a flash once he's good enough to play for England".

From England's perspective, I agree there is little difference in the branding.

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Twitter: @TrylineUK
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Seeing that the WC is at the end of the year and this is one of a couple of chances to play and gel before then surely we need to have the NRL players involved so we’re getting our strongest squad together in preparation 

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1 hour ago, Dave T said:

In reality, I don't think there is any difference between playing as GB or England, they are pretty much the same thing. 

The issue comes with the inconsistency, if England is our main international team, we can't just call ourselves GB for a year every now and again. 

There has to be a difference between the teams. 

It should be GB for tours in Australia and Kiwi/NZ test series here, England for World Cups and inter-European games. It's not rocket science and hardly controversial. The OTT reaction of some is bizarre.

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A strong brand is GB RL, but I am a tad thinking it is a revival than might lack a certain authenticity. I say that as it does feel abit like lads of a certain age pining for Long Wave radio, proper comedians and songs that have a melody that you whistle to.

The baseline is does it enhance RL and will it make any money. If so then more of it please.

Realistically a GB side can only play Australia, Fiji and NZ. Preferably on Tour. 

I will say if this is the RFL attempting to force an international diary of fixtures in preparation for the World Cup, fair dos. Just make that All Stars/Combined Nations game at the weekend and at somewhere easy to get to for RL fans. 

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25 minutes ago, M j M said:

It should be GB for tours in Australia and Kiwi/NZ test series here, England for World Cups and inter-European games. It's not rocket science and hardly controversial. The OTT reaction of some is bizarre.

Why should it be? Just because you think so isn't really a valid reason. Its also hardly controversial thinking there is no need for GB and thinking its a bygone relic either. There is simply no evidence to say there is a GB brand anymore. Indeed the last tour was a complete disaster and shows how strong the brand is, attendances were appalling and Australia didn't want a bit of it. There is also nothing OTT about people having a different opinion, its bizarre that you think there is as there hasn't been a OTT post on this thread.

This is a subject that seems to come around periodically. I remember this poll on here a few years ago in which there was a strong preference not to have GB. As this site seemingly has an older demographic who are well familiar with GB I think its very telling. Younger fans who more widely use other forms of social media, and don't even really recall GB, are very likely to be even less in favour :

 

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The lack of success of the last GB tour was nothing to do with the name the team played under, that's ridiculous.

Likewise I don't think the name impacts on the levels of support the teams receive here or abroad. People will say, "we've been building the England brand" but that is a very marginal thing when you're dealing with international teams; people don't need England or GB explaining to them.

More importantly on a practical level we still want non-English players to play for their national teams when those teams play. Choosing to ditch the historical use of GB for test series against Australasian teams makes little sense, it gives players a perverse incentive to choose England over their actual nations.

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The GB brand should NEVER have been abandoned in the first place. The GB brand is synonymous with RL, the England brand, not so. And the Scottish and Irish sides are a complete farce.

Ask any high profile player which means more to them, playing for England or playing for GB and they overwhelmingly say GB.

Also, I have a rather superb cotton GB shirt from the 2003 era which I want to wear with pride again !!!!!

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lets just move on from the gb and eng brand all together and get "with it" and "up to date" the pommie piranahs sounds trendy and down with the kids  like the cricket thing that was on but i have already forgot about  - more worrying for me though i just put a like on a post by MjM ! 

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did the bloke who invented the phrase "one hit wonder" invent anything else?

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I'm glad there will be another All Stars game next year, I just hope it is part of a longer-term strategy and the RFL will invest their energy in marketing it as it *could* be a very useful tool for growing the game domestically.

One of our biggest failings is our inability to market the stars of our league. That is what the All Stars game should be all about. Casual/potential fans neither know or care that David Fusitua isn't Brian To'o or Aidan Sezer isn't Nathan Cleary. We have players in Super League who have the skill to light up a game and produce viral moments which can attract new audiences and that is what should matter.

Besides, the All Stars and France are the only two realistic options for competitive mid-season international fixtures so, whilst the concept may be a bit contrived, we have to work with what we have rather than resign ourselves to not having the perfect product.

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3 hours ago, Bring back GB said:

 

Also, I have a rather superb cotton GB shirt from the 2003 era which I want to wear with pride again !!!!!

Be careful, the forum royalty would decry you as a heretic for enjoying the Tri-Nations series. :kolobok_butcher:

 

Great jersey btw

Wibble

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6 hours ago, Chris22 said:

Whilst I appreciate the debate has been done to death, I think its important to look at the present too.

I don't think Scotland playing home internationals in Featherstone benefits anyone.

I think it's a hard sell to say "Come and watch great players like Morgan Knowles play for Wales, but he'll drop us in a flash once he's good enough to play for England".

From England's perspective, I agree there is little difference in the branding.

On the Scotland playing home games in Featherstone, i challenged Scotland RL on this on Twitter and apparently it is a Jamaica home game not a Scottish one 🤷🏻‍♂️

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