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Re: Full circle. : Fri Sep 30, 2022 11:56 am  
A summer sport eh…….That begins in February? Yeah right.
Re: Full circle. : Fri Sep 30, 2022 11:56 am  
A summer sport eh…….That begins in February? Yeah right.
Re: Full circle. : Fri Sep 30, 2022 12:00 pm  
JINJER wrote:
A summer sport eh…….That begins in February? Yeah right.


You needed to say that twice :D

That's a fair point though, even if it is usually almost March. I agree though, I'd prefer it to kick off mid March and end now or maybe the first few weeks in October when the weather is still pretty decent these days. But I guess that is more up to SKY and their schedules?
Re: Full circle. : Fri Sep 30, 2022 2:18 pm  
We needed better governance and better owners back in 1995 and I think we’ve improved on the latter to some degree but the governance of the sport is worse, due in part to the increased strength of the owners.

I’m not sure how much money we’ve had from SKY over the last 25 years but let’s make an educated guess at half a Billion, nice round number.
Where’s it gone?
Too much of it, perhaps a large majority of it, has been frittered away on overseas players & their agents. While I’m sure we all enjoyed watching some of these players for a while, the money they’ve taken back home hasn’t really helped the Northern Hemisphere game much if at all.

The second lamentable part of the SL era is the complete demise of Lions, Kangaroo & Kiwi tours.
They used to be one of the Crown Jewels of the game and attracted a lot of attention, I even remember seeing the Kangaroos arriving at Manchester airport with footage and interviews done while the players pushed their luggage through customs.

There are now a couple of generations of players who’ve been denied the opportunity to become a British Lions Tourist and there’s young men in their late 20s or early 30s who’ve never been to see an Ashes Test series.

The diminishing of the Challenge Cup as the most sought after Trophy in the game is another regret of the SL era.
Purposely undermined and reduced in favour of the Grand Final, the Challenge Cup was one thing that caught the imagination of youngsters, it was a spectacle and it had reach, right across the planet not just RL playing nations but in the USA and other countries.

This isn’t a full list of regrettable side affects of SL but my last one is that while we’ve had the money off sky we’ve also hidden ourselves behind a pay wall and reduced our presence to the public in much the same way as Boxing did after the height of its popularity during the 80s.

Some of these things are part of the reason why the games participation numbers, viewing figures and attendances at big occasions have dwindled.

We’ve lost ourselves somewhere along the line!
Re: Full circle. : Fri Sep 30, 2022 2:44 pm  
The Avenger wrote:
We needed better governance and better owners back in 1995 and I think we’ve improved on the latter to some degree but the governance of the sport is worse, due in part to the increased strength of the owners.

I’m not sure how much money we’ve had from SKY over the last 25 years but let’s make an educated guess at half a Billion, nice round number.
Where’s it gone?
Too much of it, perhaps a large majority of it, has been frittered away on overseas players & their agents. While I’m sure we all enjoyed watching some of these players for a while, the money they’ve taken back home hasn’t really helped the Northern Hemisphere game much if at all.

The second lamentable part of the SL era is the complete demise of Lions, Kangaroo & Kiwi tours.
They used to be one of the Crown Jewels of the game and attracted a lot of attention, I even remember seeing the Kangaroos arriving at Manchester airport with footage and interviews done while the players pushed their luggage through customs.

There are now a couple of generations of players who’ve been denied the opportunity to become a British Lions Tourist and there’s young men in their late 20s or early 30s who’ve never been to see an Ashes Test series.

The diminishing of the Challenge Cup as the most sought after Trophy in the game is another regret of the SL era.
Purposely undermined and reduced in favour of the Grand Final, the Challenge Cup was one thing that caught the imagination of youngsters, it was a spectacle and it had reach, right across the planet not just RL playing nations but in the USA and other countries.

This isn’t a full list of regrettable side affects of SL but my last one is that while we’ve had the money off sky we’ve also hidden ourselves behind a pay wall and reduced our presence to the public in much the same way as Boxing did after the height of its popularity during the 80s.

Some of these things are part of the reason why the games participation numbers, viewing figures and attendances at big occasions have dwindled.

We’ve lost ourselves somewhere along the line!


Hard to argue with that. Superficially the first years of SL looked great, but sadly it was all show, no foundations for any kind of future were laid down, it all went on wages. No business can prosper without forward planning, R&D and training the next generation.
Re: Full circle. : Fri Sep 30, 2022 6:59 pm  
I wasn't sure about summer rugby, until a game at Oldham in that truncated season, where 26 players slid about in the mud for 80 minutes (if anyone was there, it was the one where the fox ran round the pitch at half-time). That settled the argument in my mind.

I think the Challenge Cup has diminished, but I think that is partly to do with changing lifestyles. Going to London used to be a big deal, the big day out for us simple northern types. As the old Wembley closed, cheap flights came along and hotel booking sites. Going to London is no big deal anymore and hotel stays are often part of a night out. So, the big trip to the smoke lost its allure too.

As for other things, I don't think the lack of Aussie tours has got anything to do with Super League but more to do with the growth of the NRL and Origin as well as full-time professionalism. The increased physicality of rugby league due to full-time professionalism means that teams can't do the tours in the same way as before, playing multiple clubs and then the tests. Now, it's three games and that's it. And the Aussies aren't as bothered anymore because they're too focussed on Origin.

The problem with the game is that it has been run by dinosaurs for too long, who haven't seen beyond its roots and not had the vision of how to make it work beyond the roots.

We should look at the NFL for inspiration. UK NFL fans don't want to watch Manchester Gladiators play American Football. They want to watch the New York Jets, or whoever, and maybe one day see it live. In the same light, someone in Torquay perhaps doesn't want to watch Torquay Rovers play Barrow but would rather see Warrington play Saints, and perhaps even follows Warrington, or whoever, in the same way that UK NFL fans will have their own favourite team unconnected to where they are from.

Perhaps one way is for each club to commit to play one game at a location many miles from their home base, in expansion areas, with some compensation to the club for lost ticket sales. The NRL do it. The Rabbitohs often play a game on the Sunshine Coast, There are commonly games in country towns.

I'm tentatively supportive, provided clubs have a change to access Category A status, and it isn't just a way of persuading the big money clubs not to shrink the league; ie. if you promise to keep it at 12, or maybe 14, we promise you'll never get relegated, but no one else will get the same chance.
Re: Full circle. : Fri Sep 30, 2022 10:17 pm  
The move to summer meant coterminous seasons and thus no room for tours
Re: Full circle. : Sat Oct 01, 2022 6:16 am  
The Avenger wrote:
The move to summer meant coterminous seasons and thus no room for tours


I'm not sure that's right. An Aussie tour was always at the end of their season. It hasn't changed for them, and it is their lack of enthusiasm that is partly the issue. But we've had World Cups every four years, and Tri-Nations and Four Nations, some New Zealand tours.

One of the issues has been the decision to end Great Britain. That was a mistake, and we shouldn't abandon it just because Wayne Bennett was a disaster, who'd rather pick an average Aussie stand-off to play on the wing over a good British winger, presumably because of the accent.

Someone mentioned earlier the World Club Challenge. Although there have been some good moments, it is always a farce, and obviously so. Let's assume Saints play Penrith in March. Well, Penrith can beat every single NRL team relatively comfortably most weekends, so it's no surprise our teams can't, The Roosters could play them and they'd lose, but all it does us give us a chance to reflect on how far behind we are. We only have a chance because they're ring rusty, whereas the British teams have had about three weeks of games.

I just think the rise of the summer game has coincided with other changes. An Aussie tour wouldn't be able to play clubs like in the old days. There is too much physicality now. They need a week between games, which is probably why a Tri-Nations was used, because we see more games but each team doesn't play as much.
Re: Full circle. : Sat Oct 01, 2022 7:41 am  
For me playing predominantly in summer was the saving grace of the SKY.

I can tell you for certain that had the game been played in winter I’d have never got my son watching the sport. Like many youngsters of his generation winter meant hibernation in his bedroom with his Xbox and all the comforts of home. I don’t blame him it’s a different world.

Like most on here I was a street corner kid, I admit it was Sandal but it wasn’t any warmer. We were used to being out doors in all weathers so the winter game was just an extension of that.

My point is, is that RL more than any other sport needs to attract new young fans and especially families. We need a USP and ours is that you can turn up most of the time in a t-shirt and remain warm.

I think Toronto got one thing spot on. That was the bear tents and the bbq’s pre match. In that fan zone we need loads of guest ales and good sensibly priced food outlets and some entertainment.

Make a day of it. Of course this could only really work from about mid May onwards but that’s still a lot of games. It would need to be secure with strict policies regarding drunken anti social behaviour so only a few hours pre kick off.

Night times even better. Get a sponsor to pay for a firework display after the game, keep them hanging around. Or a laser show, a band, anything to make that £25 ticket seem better value. It doesn’t have to end at the final whistle.

Make summer our friend. Exploit it and the fact that people of all kinds like to get out in the warm weather. That’s and a decent team and ground will attract new punters.

I know I’m slightly off topic but only the early Bulls really exploited summer RL and that bit really worked. I think over the past 25 years we’ve forgotten that bit, the bit of summer RL that really excited most people.

With what we have coming on line we need to make the whole season (most of it) one long summer bash. We can start that in 2024.
Re: Full circle. : Sat Oct 01, 2022 8:11 am  
Do not agree about two leg cup games .The C C as poor fan base and do not think it you got a score of were one team as a 25 plus lead do not think there will be much of a crowd for return leg .The idea of scrapping Magic Weekend is mad .This is one of the main reasons why Sky pay there money it is a show piece Why they stoped doing all derbys I can not understand .
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