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England 21 & France 25 article


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8 minutes ago, Tosh said:

This is the problem in that I wouldn’t class nations like Jamaica and Greece as tier2 nations but more developing ones.

Nations like France and wales are more similar to PNG and Fiji in that both countries are part of the UK league pyramid/structure with pathways setup for their local produced players to progress into a professional environment. 

I specifically said tier 2 and developing nations.

France and Wales don't have the strong enough roots and don't have enough full-time players to choose from. They don't even really have enough players to choose from full stop and don't have large amounts of heritage players to fall back on like the PI nations. We've had French and Welsh clubs in the English system for decades in some cases. You can have all the pathways in the World but unless you solve those fundamental problems they won't progress. It's awfully simplistic to keep talking about PNG and Fiji being some blueprint when the situations are fundamentally different, and when it is ultimately no different than what has already happened for years anyway. The issues are far deeper than that.

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48 minutes ago, Dave T said:

There is a way of making it work. 4 x 4's, two strong and two weak groups - but you have to have a 2nd round before quarters which sees 3rd place in strong play 2nd place in weak to play in QF. You can't just give 3rd place in a group of 4 a pass through - that was awful in 2008, and should never be used again. There has to be a risk of not qualifying, even if low. 

But, the above is horrible for the reason I highlight - its using a structure to hide the root cause. 

It's the team who loses the first game by a drop goal in the weak group and then has basically no chance of qualifying I worry for.

I'm just repeating ideas I've put in other threads, but would be much more in favour of a preliminary round between the 'emerging nations' to get 16 down to 10 or 12, which is broadly the model used in the recent T20 cricket world cup. Far less doctored than this 'weak' and 'strong' stuff.

I can confirm 30+ less sales for Scotland vs Italy at Workington, after this afternoons test purchase for the Tonga match, £7.50 is extremely reasonable, however a £2.50 'delivery' fee for a walk in purchase is beyond taking the mickey, good luck with that, it's cheaper on the telly.

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49 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

You reckon in 3 years the order of merit will be any different?

As a fan who along with the missus will travel to France to take in some games, I doubt I would go for the full tournament, then the choice is to go for what should be the quality games (as an England fan) of the group games - if this suggestion came into being - of playing both Australia, NZ and a QF which should also be against good opposition - I wouldn't expect England to top that group - seems very appealing to me, that would make a good 3 week trip.

There were far far to many blow-out games for me in the format this year others may disagree and that is their prerogative, I would not like to think I was paying good money for travel, accomodation, subsistance and match entry to watch such games on offer in France as there were this year. 

I agree Harry.

RL is the most brutal and unforgiving game when a mismatch is on offer.  This years tournament provided the evidence that the game does not have the depth to host a 16 team competition based on the seeding system that it had and these mismatches will not magically disappear in 3 or even 10 years.

The NRL is continually moving away from the standard of SL - or any other league in fledgling countries - therefore how the hell does countries such as Italy, Jamaica, Serbia, Greece, Ireland, Scotland or Wales compete with their SH counterparts.

The format suggested in the opening post is ‘fudged’ but what it offers is high quality games in group 1 and 2 and other games in groups 3 and 4 whereby countries of lesser ability can compete rather than being steamrollered.

IMHO there is no shame in accepting that at this moment in time a ‘fudged’ format is the best option.  But if this format is decided upon the organisers have to be brutally honest with the media to explain that the until the standards across countries improve this is the best way forward for now.

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11 minutes ago, Just Browny said:

It's the team who loses the first game by a drop goal in the weak group and then has basically no chance of qualifying I worry for.

I'm just repeating ideas I've put in other threads, but would be much more in favour of a preliminary round between the 'emerging nations' to get 16 down to 10 or 12, which is broadly the model used in the recent T20 cricket world cup. Far less doctored than this 'weak' and 'strong' stuff.

That's why under my system that wouldn't be the case. Because two still progress (same as a traditional groups). 

Our suggestions are similar tbh, it's just my qualifying round comes in between the group stages and quarter finals. 

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1 minute ago, Adelaide Tiger said:

I agree Harry.

RL is the most brutal and unforgiving game when a mismatch is on offer.  This years tournament provided the evidence that the game does not have the depth to host a 16 team competition based on the seeding system that it had and these mismatches will not magically disappear in 3 or even 10 years.

The NRL is continually moving away from the standard of SL - or any other league in fledgling countries - therefore how the hell does countries such as Italy, Jamaica, Serbia, Greece, Ireland, Scotland or Wales compete with their SH counterparts.

The format suggested in the opening post is ‘fudged’ but what it offers is high quality games in group 1 and 2 and other games in groups 3 and 4 whereby countries of lesser ability can compete rather than being steamrollered.

IMHO there is no shame in accepting that at this moment in time a ‘fudged’ format is the best option.  But if this format is decided upon the organisers have to be brutally honest with the media to explain that the until the standards across countries improve this is the best way forward for now.

The best option is highly subjective, and lets not forget these fudged formats were slated for years.

Why would anyone be shamed anyway when we have had far more World Cups with a fudged format, practically as described in the link, than those without one. There is nothing new about it, we've been there done that. I would say if anyone is shamed it's those embarrassed by a few one-sided matches. 

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31 minutes ago, Adelaide Tiger said:

I agree Harry.

RL is the most brutal and unforgiving game when a mismatch is on offer.  This years tournament provided the evidence that the game does not have the depth to host a 16 team competition based on the seeding system that it had and these mismatches will not magically disappear in 3 or even 10 years.

The NRL is continually moving away from the standard of SL - or any other league in fledgling countries - therefore how the hell does countries such as Italy, Jamaica, Serbia, Greece, Ireland, Scotland or Wales compete with their SH counterparts.

The format suggested in the opening post is ‘fudged’ but what it offers is high quality games in group 1 and 2 and other games in groups 3 and 4 whereby countries of lesser ability can compete rather than being steamrollered.

IMHO there is no shame in accepting that at this moment in time a ‘fudged’ format is the best option.  But if this format is decided upon the organisers have to be brutally honest with the media to explain that the until the standards across countries improve this is the best way forward for now.

Totally agree.

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26 minutes ago, Damien said:

The best option is highly subjective, and lets not forget these fudged formats were slated for years.

Why would anyone be shamed anyway when we have had far more World Cups with a fudged format, practically as described in the link, than those without one. There is nothing new about it, we've been there done that. I would say if anyone is shamed it's those embarrassed by a few one-sided matches. 

Why would anyone be shamed I am personally not shamed but neither will I pay to watch *total mismatch fixtures, if that rocks your boat Damien then you get along to watch them.

*To be honest I watched enough of these fixtures throughout last season, now before all of those who can't wait to jump down my throat and say it could happen again this season but the other way round, I say as long as I see competitive games I am a happy punter.

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1 minute ago, Harry Stottle said:

Why would anyone be shamed I am personally not shamed but neither will I pay to watch *total mismatch fixtures, if that rocks your boat Damien then you get along to watch them.

*To be honest I watched enough of these fixtures throughout last season, now before all of those who can't wait to jump down my throat and say it could happen again this season but the other way round, I say as long as I see competitive games I am a happy punter.

Why not ask the person I was quoting? He was the one talking about people being shamed.

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1 hour ago, Tosh said:

I personally feel that the sport is no way near strong enough to hold a 16 team format tournament and should instead be a 10 team tournament with one group of 4 teams and two groups of 3 teams.

It isn't, really. Only five of the 24 group games had a winning margin of less than 22 points and the eight final-round matches had an average margin of 55 points. 

That said, 10 would feel like a step backwards.

There's no shame in sticking with 16 but acknowledging the lack of depth by fudging the pools if it enhances the product.

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The author doesn’t understand the finances around these World Cups. They mistake a failure to make a super profit as a loss. Moreover, they ignore the massive grass roots investment across the game over here that came with the tournaments. It will be the most financially rewarding World Cup for the game we have ever had by a massive distance. Assuming they are not a troll, but are a journalist (though maybe they’re just an amateur blogging) their failure to understand what Dutton means by “break even” is hopeless and completely undermines everything else. 

As for crowds, that has been touched upon in these parts, so I won’t revisit that. 

As for the format, I have an open mind. I don’t decide these things, but I would not object to a 8/10/12 team men’s tournament with emerging nations playing in parallel. But I am conscious that it’s not necessarily a decision for the fans, as opposed to the IRL who have oversight over its dozens and dozens of members. On this, again showing what a dreadful article this is, lumping Wales with Ireland and Scotland is mind numbingly dim. 

Finally, no mention of there being 3 tournaments. You can’t consider the project properly without understanding it was 3 tournaments in one. Which increased the massive grass roots investment. Or should I say you would be stupid to do so, but as noted above we are dealing with an author unable to understand what they’re writing about. 

Edited by Exiled Wiganer
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4 hours ago, nadera78 said:

I know the game in Lebanon has taken a hit over the past 5 years (like the country as a whole) but there is still some RL played there, plus a sizeable number of people who were still engaged relatively recently, as well as a general awareness of the game. The recent RLWC would have helped with that too. It wouldn't take a huge amount of money to regenerate the school, college and club competitions that were previously in place.

Adding the Lebanese to that trio would help establish a really interesting web of local and regional development, where clubs and rep teams (at a variety of levels) could bounce off one another. It presents a lot of very interesting developmental possibilities. 

The question isn't really about money, that can be found if we really want it to be, it's more about having someone in authority who can recognise the strategic benefits of focussing on one area and pushing through with it. The fact we've allowed Serbia to stagnate and Lebanon to wither is, frankly, criminal.

Those countries need to be playing regular European internations to increase exposure of the sport. The ERL has a comp in place but I'd much rather see a top tier 4 team competition with Eng, Lebanon, France, and Italy or whoever the next strongest country. The inclusion of Italy would be dependent on a cast iron guarantee to develop the sport domestically. Have another tier below that for Wales, Ireland, Scotland, Greece, Jamaica, and Serbia.

I include Jamaica because they need regular games for their first team and the US/Canada are in no position to offer any competition at this point. You can still have a competition in Florida for their amatuer teams. 

Having Lebanon and Greece playing every year at home will go a long way to increasing exposure of the sport and get more young kids interested. Not playing the odd fixture in a WC or in Sydney. The Lebanese diaspora in Sydney already know RL exists through the NRL.

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3 hours ago, ATLANTISMAN said:

Really looking forward to France 2025 remember its less than 3 years away:)

Biggest concern now is the rumoured losses of RLWC 2021 and who is going to pay for it?

 

What are your thoughts on where the Youth WC should be played? I reckon having the smaller RL clubs host games would be ideal, and the local communities would pull out all the stops; so places such as Realmont, Lescure, Ille, Salses, Tonneins, Salon etc etc.

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3 hours ago, Chris22 said:

I'd rather reduce to 12 teams than a supergroup format.

The one suggested in that article means Lebanon need not bother turning up.

If we have to fix a World Cup to such an extent, then its existence is pointless in my view.

Exactly. It's a bit unfair on Lebanon. Why put them in a group where they will likely lose all 3 instead of one in which they would be very competitive.

I noticed they aren't very confident about France, they have put them with the very weakest teams. 🙂

 

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24 minutes ago, Number 16 said:

What are your thoughts on where the Youth WC should be played? I reckon having the smaller RL clubs host games would be ideal, and the local communities would pull out all the stops; so places such as Realmont, Lescure, Ille, Salses, Tonneins, Salon etc etc.

I agree looks like being Nines as well:)

 

Paul

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5 hours ago, Tosh said:

This is the problem in that I wouldn’t class nations like Jamaica and Greece as tier2 nations but more developing ones.

Nations like France and wales are more similar to PNG and Fiji in that both countries are part of the UK league pyramid/structure with pathways setup for their local produced players to progress into a professional environment. 

This is a really good point. If you look at the countries that have access to professional structures and pathways to nrl or super league you would have 

Tiering system could look quite different 

Tier 1 - countries that run a professional league - Aus England 

Tier 2 - countries that participate in a professional comp or 2nd division pro leagues eg nsw cup rfl championship qrl 

- France, NZ, Wales, Fiji, PNG 

Tier 3 - countries that are domestically operated at either amateur level or semi pro  with no links to professional pathways 

- Samoa Tonga Cook Islands Scotland Ireland Greece Jamaica Italy etc. 

That is probably the honest outlook on the game currently 

NZ as much as it’s a tier one nation it really isn’t. We have a professional team but we don’t run a professional league. 

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6 minutes ago, Iceberg Slim said:

This is a really good point. If you look at the countries that have access to professional structures and pathways to nrl or super league you would have 

Tiering system could look quite different 

Tier 1 - countries that run a professional league - Aus England 

Tier 2 - countries that participate in a professional comp or 2nd division pro leagues eg nsw cup rfl championship qrl 

- France, NZ, Wales, Fiji, PNG 

Tier 3 - countries that are domestically operated at either amateur level or semi pro  with no links to professional pathways 

- Samoa Tonga Cook Islands Scotland Ireland Greece Jamaica Italy etc. 

That is probably the honest outlook on the game currently 

NZ as much as it’s a tier one nation it really isn’t. We have a professional team but we don’t run a professional league. 

It’s hugely improved from where we were, and improving all the time. 

I would draw out a couple of things: France has its own league, and some recognition of the huge playing numbers in PNG should be made whenever looking at the state of the game. 

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45 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

Could I suggest that comp is played in French Guiana.

I absolutely abhor these plastic versions of Rugby League, leave the reduced numbers to Union they need all the passing practice they can get.

I think its more to do with costs and practicalities Harry.

You can host a youth 16 team 9s tournament across 1 or 2 venues in a week which is much more cost effective for this age group.

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18 hours ago, NW10LDN said:

Those countries need to be playing regular European internations to increase exposure of the sport. The ERL has a comp in place but I'd much rather see a top tier 4 team competition with Eng, Lebanon, France, and Italy or whoever the next strongest country. The inclusion of Italy would be dependent on a cast iron guarantee to develop the sport domestically. Have another tier below that for Wales, Ireland, Scotland, Greece, Jamaica, and Serbia.

I include Jamaica because they need regular games for their first team and the US/Canada are in no position to offer any competition at this point. You can still have a competition in Florida for their amatuer teams. 

Having Lebanon and Greece playing every year at home will go a long way to increasing exposure of the sport and get more young kids interested. Not playing the odd fixture in a WC or in Sydney. The Lebanese diaspora in Sydney already know RL exists through the NRL.

Lebanon is quite the anomaly as it falls under the MEA federation and from a heritage standpoint is kangaroos version of elite compared to the other mea nations. Lebanon are destined to make the World Cup based off the current criteria right now for at least the next 20 years. I wonder if moving them under the ERL would be better 

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