anjado Posted December 11, 2022 Share Posted December 11, 2022 1 hour ago, Sports Prophet said: What does this 6 FT and 2 PT Sydney system look like and when was the perfect opportunity to create it? 1998/99 Balmain, Wests both knew they were at deaths door, Wests despite some successful seasons in the 90's had been on deaths door since the 80's when they were booted out with Newtown. They moved to Campbelltown which was a good move for them but their 98/99 teams were the worst ever assembled in the NRL. Balmain had a really good support base but had been awful on the field since 1990. Had a stupid name change to the Sydney Tigers and moved to Parramatta stadium which was also a dumb move. Instead of merging two clubs which were 40-50 km apart where with other clubs stuck between them they should have seen the change in demographics of Sydney and merged them with other clubs. The most obvious merger in that whole period was the merger of Canterbury and Western Suburbs. Canterbury were talking about relocating to Liverpool which had junior club sides in Western Suburbs district, the NRL should have helped relocate them and build their 30,000 seat stadium. Balmain and the Leichhardt area was becoming hugely gentrified in the 80's and 90's. Leichhardt oval was 5km from Henson Park and only 8km to the Sydney Football Stadium. They also had a good fanbase they were more supported than the Roosters were when I was growing up and had a decent junior base. Basically this merger makes sense Nick Politis could run the club, Balmain bring across their fan base and actual junior base, the roosters only have 4 junior clubs. They could play 3 games a year at Leichhardt.It just made sense. Balmain would have fixed the Roosters weaknesses and the Roosters fixed Balmain's. With both clubs being within 10km of each other and not being massive rivals. It would then require 2 more mergers one would have been reasonably tough and the other also makes some sense. Souths & St George merger makes sense from a geographical perspective. It wouldn't be the easiest sell but again they could have become a monster club. That leaves Cronulla who were never in danger in the criteria despite the fact since then they were always mentioned as the relocation club and Illawarra which also makes more sense than St George & Illawarra. Both relatively small clubs but would have a huge junior base basically another Penrith. Those moves leave the NRL looking like this. 2 Part Time Sydney teams. Central Coast Bears - play 3 games out of NSO. They only didn't get to move to the central coast due to non stop rain in 1998. South Coast Sharks - Mainly based in Wollongong. 3-5 games in Cronulla. Full-time Sydney teams. South Sydney Dragons - Based mainly in the inner city but stretches from Redfern/Mascot to the start of the shire. (SFS) Easts Tigers - Inner city based club you can chuck Newtown in too if you want they represent the inner city to Bondi. (SFS) South-West Bulldogs - Bankstown to Campbelltown represents the whole south West with their Stadium in the middle. (Liverpool) Parramatta (City in it's own right, should be the strongest club in Sydney) Manly (Unique area difficult to merge with anyone but add value) Penrith (Huge junior base can only realistically merge with Parramatta but that would affect the balance of the competition) Basically this ensures every Sydney team is represented geographically correct. All have large catchment areas and you can still maintain a rivalry. The key was not forcing bitter rivals to merge like Norths and Manly. I think under this system everyone is fairly even and many clubs are stronger we don't disillusion too many supporters. I genuinely believe if we went down this route we would be getting over 20,000 people per game and selling out games. SFS I believe would have close to a sell out every week under this system. It would also help with expansion 10 NSW clubs (including Canberra) 5 Queensland clubs Brisbane X2 Gold Coast Sunshine Coast North Queensland 2 New Zealand teams Auckland Wellington. Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide. From their your expansion is looking at Christchurch, Port Moresby or something crazier. One of the great strengths of Rugby League is that it should be easy to expand. They could have used the under 20's competition as a way to help expansion too. Bringing in future expansion teams in this competition and allowing players who become to old to be loaned to NRL clubs until they are in the competition. What they have now doesn't work too many clubs based at Homebush, the tigers don't know what area they represent, the roosters the only club at the SFS which is a disaster. Those mergers would have covered each other's weaknesses, made sense geographically and made the weaker clubs stronger and every club would have a geographical identity. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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