Richard Ferguson

Super Rugby – Changes coming


Written by Richard Ferguson (Richard Ferguson)

Posted in :Original Content, Super Rugby on 26 Aug 2016 at 11:15
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Super Rugby is a constantly changing organism, we all know this. But in recent times, the changes have been less than positive and the current format has come under heavy fire. Fear not, it seems we are in for a surprise change.

To date, Super Rugby has only gotten bigger, and more unbalanced to be honest, with the current structure already 80% bigger than the original Super 10.

An article run by The Sydney Morning Herald has indicated that for the first time, the Super Rugby franchise could be considering a consolidation of sorts, with various proposals being discussed.

There isn’t much detail on each of these proposals but we do seem to know that one option is for South Africa and Australia to each drop one franchise and revert to a Super 16. The other option being that South Africa drop 2 franchises, but I cannot see that being justified should Australia keep 5.

What is most concerning about this piece though, is the detail into which it goes regarding the state of affairs within the Australian conference, specifically its financial state. It seems that all of their franchises are in some sort of financial trouble, with the Force alone requiring a massive financial boost from the Australian Rugby Union during the last year. The only franchise to post a profit was the Waratahs, and it was only A$100 000.

It seems that finally, someone has realised that the current state of Super Rugby is not working, and that change should not always be to go bigger. Let’s rather go better, and fix this mess.

Here is the link to the original article – LINK



107 Comments

  • Not that we would have won this year. But we accepted it as next year we would get the easier opposition… Now they change it which mean that we just got screwed this year… Suck.. Would have like to see The Bulls and Stormers play the teams that us and the Lions had to play…

  • Comment 1, posted at 26.08.16 11:21:47 by ebenp Reply
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  • @ebenp (Comment 1) :

    Sorry, I should have mentioned, these changes are only likely to happen from 2018 onwards.

    You cannot take away a franchise on a few months notice, the players would be the worst affected by such short notice.

  • Comment 2, posted at 26.08.16 11:24:48 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • Ja but let’s see if the powers that be have the balls to change and not just talk.
    Personally I would like Super rugby to be like the Heineken cup (or UEFA Champions league) by rewarding the top teams of each countries domestic competition with a spot in the competition.

  • Comment 3, posted at 26.08.16 11:26:21 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 3) :

    And a similar Group structure into Quarter Finals, Semi Finals and then Finals would be better as well.

  • Comment 4, posted at 26.08.16 11:29:05 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • To me this is as predicted the end of Super Rugby,it is just such a cumbersome beast that it needs to be put out of its misery..
    The greed has consumed itself.Too many teams means weaker sides,too many games means viewer fatigue,too long a season means a lack of excitement.
    All adds up to viewer apathy.

  • Comment 5, posted at 26.08.16 11:30:58 by The hound Reply
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  • @ebenp (Comment 1) : Although we got the harder opposition I feel not playing NZ opposition only sets you up for a fail. I’m not looking forward to SR next year because we’re going to miss what made SR great, playing New Zealand teams (and to a lesser point good Oz teams, do they have any of those :mrgreen: )?

  • Comment 6, posted at 26.08.16 11:31:16 by Hulk Reply

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  • @The hound (Comment 5) : Well said.

  • Comment 7, posted at 26.08.16 11:32:29 by Hulk Reply

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  • @Hulk (Comment 6) :

    Just look at what happened to the Stormers. First game against NZ opposition and they get a 40 point hiding at home?!

  • Comment 8, posted at 26.08.16 11:33:00 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • Drop Japan, Drop Kings, drop Rebels/Force, drop Jaguars
    Make it Super 14 again.

  • Comment 9, posted at 26.08.16 11:45:25 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 9) :

    How ever many teams there are, all teams should play all teams.. simple

  • Comment 10, posted at 26.08.16 11:46:55 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • Super rugby should be 16 teams split into 4 pools:
    So a rough allocation…
    Pool A: Hurricanes, Brumbies, Sharks, Sunwolves
    Pool B: Crusaders, Waratahs, Lions, Jaguares
    Pool C: Highlanders, Reds, Bulls, USA team
    Pool D: Chiefs,Blues, Rebels, Stormers,
    Play each team in the pool home and away, top 2 play a QF, followed by a SF and Final

    Cheetahs and Kings the poorest Unions will fall away and their players absorbed into other teams.
    Force will fall away as no interest in the area and adopt a USA team.

  • Comment 11, posted at 26.08.16 11:48:06 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 10) : Sure, only thing is Japan,kings and one ausie shouldn’t be there. Also I am worried about the Jaguars long-term prospects, it will only be so long until their players start booting Srugby for the pound again.

  • Comment 12, posted at 26.08.16 11:57:46 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 11) : @Richard Ferguson (Comment 10) : nice idea but I’m with Richard that teams must play against all the other teams.

  • Comment 13, posted at 26.08.16 11:58:29 by JD Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 11) : Why keep Japan? Why a USA team? Why Pools? If you go back to pools you creating a similar system to what we currently have, the s12/14 was the best system we had. Everyone plays everyone. finished. You don’t get into a situation where there are stronger and weaker pools. The best teams over the whole of the competition plays semi’s. I don’t see anything more fair than that.

  • Comment 14, posted at 26.08.16 12:00:02 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 13) : Yeh look that is my preference too. Just with all the teams i dont know how its possible…unless Super rugby is played like a league and team finishing top wins.

  • Comment 15, posted at 26.08.16 12:00:33 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 12) :
    @JD (Comment 13) :

    The bigger the competition, then I would go with Groups playing Home and Away..
    If they reduce it back down to 14 teams, I would say it would be better if all teams play each other, no conference system.

  • Comment 16, posted at 26.08.16 12:02:00 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 14) : See my comment 15…too many teams to play everyone and pretty hard to ditch the Japs and Argies now. A USA team brings money and tv audience which teams like Cheetahs, Kings etc dont. My ideal is for everyone to play everyone…but only works in a league format with no playoffs or else super rugby will be 12 months of the year

  • Comment 17, posted at 26.08.16 12:02:12 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 17) : Its not hard, ditch them finished. It may be just as hard to ditch the Kings as they are riddled with political interference.
    USA is not an option for me, why is SANZAR trying to expand the global game when its WR job. How do you think the traveling will affect SA teams then? its bad enough as it is for us to travel to Aus and NZ.

  • Comment 18, posted at 26.08.16 12:05:47 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • I would suggest splitting the competition into three Tiers (Premiership, Championship and Development) with 8 teams in each division. This would require six new teams to join the Development Division (North America, Pacific Islands, Asia, Europe, South America, NEwhere)

    Essentially each team would play the others in the same division (home and away) and the end of the season, the top 4 of the Premiership would contest the Semi’s and then Grand Final. The same weekend as the Semi Finals The bottom three would play promotion/relegation matches between the top three of the Championship.

    In fact I would say that 8th place in the Premiership is relegated and replaced by 1st place in the Championship. 7th place in the Premiership should play a promotion/relegation match at the home of the 2nd place in the Championship. 6th place in the Premiership should play a promotion/relegation match at their Home against 3rd place in the Championship. The bottom three of the Championship, would do the same with the top three of the Development division. The bottom of the Development division can play any new teams that wanted to join the tournament after going through a tender process (?)

    This way the need to tap into new markets is built into the format, while still maintaining the Quality vs Quality aspect that fans are crying out for. Giving teams that are lower on the log something to play for would also add to the excitement/viewership numbers.

  • Comment 19, posted at 26.08.16 12:08:22 by andredewaal Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 18) : Haha ditch them finished…oh if only were that easy…hope that wasnt a serious comment from you. Ditching any team now would be extremely difficult. Playing Super rugby requires traveling…players need to get used to it and stop using it as an excuse. Only way to play this comp is travel.

  • Comment 20, posted at 26.08.16 12:10:01 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @andredewaal (Comment 19) : That’s a good idea in principle, however with 8 teams in the Premier Tier, it means there are only 3 spots left to fill from South Africa and Aus. If that’s the case we might as well send two teams to join their ITM cup in NZ.

  • Comment 21, posted at 26.08.16 12:11:09 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 20) : Ok so you suggesting it would be a breeze to ditch the Kings and the Cheetahs then? You opening a whole new can of worms by including the USA.

  • Comment 22, posted at 26.08.16 12:13:20 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 22) : I think it would be extremely difficult to ditch any team, unless they base it on financial means. Both the Japs and Argies add too much just from a money and PR base that SANZAAR would struggle to drop them now…maybe in a few years if interest fades. Personally i think if they keep the 18 (not sure how Kings will be able to) then they should revert to a league format much like the football leagues. Play home and away games..winner is team finishing on top of the log. Only problem with that is sponsors want a final.

  • Comment 23, posted at 26.08.16 12:17:40 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 20) :

    You have hit the nail on the head with the travel comment.

    Only Aus and RSA teams moan and whinge about travel, the NZ teams simply go and beat any team anywhere in the world without a problem..

  • Comment 24, posted at 26.08.16 12:21:50 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 24) : Travel is part and parcel of professional sport. All teams travel. And in order to play this comp travel is required. So either deal with it or use it as an excuse…i know which option the best teams choose. The only way overseas travel is negated is by only playing Currie Cup.

  • Comment 25, posted at 26.08.16 12:25:43 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 23) : I also want a final, Must be the most boring way of winning a comp via a league system, no final’s match day excitement or anything of hat sort.
    Japan brought nothing in reality, Argies, well maybe a little bit, but we all expected way more from them, if you consider how the Kings played in their first season in Srugby, then the Argies was pretty mediocre in comparison.
    What I am realising is you looking at it from a financial point of view, which I understand, however in reality that is why we sitting in this hole as it is. Rugby needs to be the top of the list, then financials.
    If you look at how badly all of the financials are for all the Srugby franchises then really did this move to expand pay off? Most definitely not. I cannot think of any team but the Lions who were so crap for such a long period who had any financial difficulties from 1996 to the expansion to S15.

  • Comment 26, posted at 26.08.16 12:26:01 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 24) : Yes they go out and beat I agree, but you have forgotten how the Chiefs moaned this year about their travel schedule after they visited SA then travelled on to Arg.

  • Comment 27, posted at 26.08.16 12:28:10 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 25) : If I remember correctly the NZ teams moaned a hell of allot about their increased travel schedule when the S12 expanded to S14.

  • Comment 28, posted at 26.08.16 12:29:47 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 3) : @JD (Comment 13) : Not all teams play each other in the Champs League. It’s groups, which I think is fair. Random draws into a group , obviously using a seeding system, Tier 1, 2, 3 . Only 1/2 tier 1 teams in each group etc. It makes sense if you have a lot of teams. But I hope they revert to all teams playing each other home and away, that means dropping a few teams, which I am ok with.

  • Comment 29, posted at 26.08.16 12:30:00 by Quintin Reply

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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 21) : Well if you based it on this years results there would be 4 NZ teams, 3 SA teams and 1 Aussie team…maybe next year there will be less Kiwi teams in the top 8 :roll:

  • Comment 30, posted at 26.08.16 12:31:55 by andredewaal Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 26) : The problem is rugby is now a professional sport. Therefore the financial aspect has to be a big priority…neglecting that and only thinking rugby is truly naive…just see how that worked out for John Smit and the Sharks. Same goes with SA rugby- the Unions financial model is so poor so that together with our Rand strength has diluted our rugby massively-and well we can see the Bok results. If we only want to think rugby then the game needs to turn amateur again. You say Japan brought nothing yet every game of theirs was a sellout basically, same with Argies…compare that to games in SA…who isnt adding ‘value’?

  • Comment 31, posted at 26.08.16 12:32:05 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 24) :@SheldonK (Comment 20) : maybe true but NZ teams have not yet won a Super rugby final in SA?!?! No team have crossed the Indian ocean to win a Super rugby final?!?! Now tell me again how travelling does not play a role?!?!

  • Comment 32, posted at 26.08.16 12:32:59 by JD Reply
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  • @Quintin (Comment 29) : I know both competitions are played in groups but I was referring to both competitions being a reward for finishing in the top part of the local competition.

  • Comment 33, posted at 26.08.16 12:35:29 by JD Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 31) : The Kings in their first year was also almost a sell out each year. That doesn’t mean that they should have been in the comp do they now? Japan people will only buy tickets for so long to go watch their team lose by 20 points each game.

  • Comment 34, posted at 26.08.16 12:35:57 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 32) : Home ground advantage plays a role. Teams play better at home than away from home. How many Currie Cups have been won by the away teams? probably a hell of a lot less than the home team. Travel is unavoidable…there is literally no way you can play the comp without travelling…so why moan about it? Rather not play the comp then.

  • Comment 35, posted at 26.08.16 12:36:30 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 34) : That emphasizes my point…teams should be in the comp for as long as they add value. The Kings cant add value now so no they shouldnt play. The Jap and Arg teams are currently adding value so they should. What is your suggestion then? Back to Super 14? How do you decide which teams get cut? Based on log position?

  • Comment 36, posted at 26.08.16 12:40:23 by SheldonK Reply

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  • Let me put it this way, move the CC and Sr comps around. This for each country meaning the ITM/CC and what ever Aus is doing these days move to the start of the year. The top 4 teams from each comp go through to the S12, this will bring back allot of interest into the local competitions again as it has a bearing on the S12 comp. The s12 comp gets run on a home and away system whereby half of the teams you play home the other half you play away, done via a draw who you play where. This in turn will give you a full years worth of Srugby action starting at the local comps going through to the S12 and the final being the peak of the comp towards the end of the year.

  • Comment 37, posted at 26.08.16 12:41:55 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • Home and Away requires yet again to much travelling. Just play each other once. Finish and Klaar – Mic Drop.

  • Comment 38, posted at 26.08.16 12:43:09 by JarsonX Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 36) : Ok so your argument is that the value they bring via a full stadium is worth more than the quality of rugby we are seeing each weekend? This is exactly why Srugby is failing and so much interest has been lost.

  • Comment 39, posted at 26.08.16 12:43:41 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 32) : I think thats the best way to do it because you will get people investing in the smalller unions because they have a real chance to play themselves into the Super Rugby, I like that a lot. There a plenty of clubs all over Europe who got huge investments(big names like Chelsea, PSG, Monaco come to mind) to take those clubs to the next level. I hope that it would have the same affect if they go down that route. It’s ideal.

  • Comment 40, posted at 26.08.16 12:43:52 by Quintin Reply

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  • @JD (Comment 3) : use the be like that in the late 90′s before the cats was formed . Would make the CC better again . Make Super rugby shorter and move the CC to the start of the year . tot 5 francies qualify

  • Comment 41, posted at 26.08.16 12:48:23 by Zibbie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 39) : Ideally you want quality rugby being watched in full stadiums. The fact that the Japs and Argies full the stadium shows the interest is there from their side. Its the SA supporters and Aussies that lack the support/interest.

  • Comment 42, posted at 26.08.16 12:48:25 by SheldonK Reply

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  • Sorry for typo’s, on the mobile, laptop was stolen out of the car a couple of hours ago using those remote key jammers :twisted:

  • Comment 43, posted at 26.08.16 12:49:27 by Quintin Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 35) : for sure rugby is professional and teams must travel but that does not change the fact that it does play a role in results. Yes teams should moan less about it but take a look at how long NZ and OZ teams tour and then how long SA teams tour and remember they must tour with the same number of players than NZ and OZ teams. Fair?!?!? not really sure!!!!

  • Comment 44, posted at 26.08.16 12:50:12 by JD Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 42) : No one has interest in the comp any longer because of the watered down system since S15 happened where we play our local teams twice. We saw the Sharks play the Cheetahs 4 times in one season! Do you remember how full the stadiums used to be pre-S15?

  • Comment 45, posted at 26.08.16 12:50:56 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 27) :

    Yet they still beat the Stormers in the Quarter Final and put up a decent performance in the Semi Finals?

  • Comment 46, posted at 26.08.16 12:51:44 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 23) : The EPL does not have a final . doesn t seem they are struggling to pull in sponsors

  • Comment 47, posted at 26.08.16 12:55:23 by Zibbie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 37) : I do like that suggestion. I know the lack of an Aussie comp is an issue and travel factor is still there but tough to figure a perfect scenario. Still not sure it will change the numbers in the stands for SA games though but thats another issue.

  • Comment 48, posted at 26.08.16 12:56:20 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @JD (Comment 44) : I agree, if you think about it, SA teams never won the S12, but since the S14, the playing field was somewhat leveled as their teams had to travel for longer periouds, consider how many SA teams played finals those days. Considering we had two all SA finals, with the Bulls also playing the chiefs in pta in that 5 year period of S14. SA basically won 3 out of 5 S14 titles before it got changed to S15. S12 SA only had two finals we competed in, The Sharks who played in the 1996 and 2001 final out of 10 seasons. S15 the Sharks played in one final out of 5 seasons. That’s a terrible list considering. SA teams failed in S12 and S15 big time.

  • Comment 49, posted at 26.08.16 12:59:14 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 46) : The Sharks also travelled to Brisbane beat the Red, travelled to CT beat the Stormers and then NZ to fail in the final against the Chiefs. So what’s your point?

  • Comment 50, posted at 26.08.16 13:01:06 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Zibbie (Comment 47) : Look my preference is a league format with a winner. Play each team home and away and winner is team top of the log…that rewards consistency over a one off good game.

  • Comment 51, posted at 26.08.16 13:01:31 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 49) : Sa teams didnt fare well in S12 and S15 etc….but i think also look how the Boks fared internationally during those periods…perhaps our playing group just not good enough during those periods? May not be only factor but think its a big one

  • Comment 52, posted at 26.08.16 13:03:51 by SheldonK Reply

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  • Its all instigated by the WPRU from getting out of playing in the NZ leg of SuperRugby next year, and who can blame them after taking a 60 point pasting at home against the first Kiwi team the met this year.

  • Comment 53, posted at 26.08.16 13:04:27 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 52) : I remember that the NZ teams complained about their travel schedule in S14. My point is when the playing field got a bit levelled for a few years, we did a hell of allot better in general. Yes we did have some serious great players as well. But is it not a coincidence that our players flourished a bit due to the levelled field?

  • Comment 54, posted at 26.08.16 13:07:16 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 54) : Was it not also during that period that the Boks beat the All Blacks more? So yes travel was probably a factor the NZ sides had to adjust to…and together with our strong player base made it tough for them. However any comp including SA, NZ and AUS teams requires SA sides to travel further….its just geography. We could always just play Zimbabwe and Namibia and Kenya

  • Comment 55, posted at 26.08.16 13:09:50 by SheldonK Reply

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  • Go back to Super 12

    4 teams each from SA NZ and Australia, one pool, each team plays the others twice, home and away.

  • Comment 56, posted at 26.08.16 13:25:51 by jonnow Reply

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  • @jonnow (Comment 56) : Look i did enjoy that comp…just not sure they are going to just ditch Arg and Japs at the moment…

  • Comment 57, posted at 26.08.16 13:31:46 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 57) : Methinks the issue that will be hard to justify is getting NZ to give up one of their franchises.

  • Comment 58, posted at 26.08.16 13:43:40 by jonnow Reply

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  • @jonnow (Comment 58) : Hence my suggestion that the ITM/CC gets moved to the beginning of the year, the top 4 teams from each country move onto S12 for that season. Each season we will likely have one or two new teams in the comp meaning we keeping it fresh.

  • Comment 59, posted at 26.08.16 13:53:00 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 59) : That does take care of the excess SA/Aussie/NZ teams…but how to ditch the Argies and Japs without a massive argument and bad PR?

  • Comment 60, posted at 26.08.16 13:58:06 by SheldonK Reply

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  • I won’t even bother trying to dream up altenative formats as I fully trust SANZAAR to pick Accenture’s least workable proposal and further futz around with it until it’s completely unworkable.

    Y’ll wasting your time thinking of ways to fix Super Rugby. Trust the body with one of the longest acronyms in World Rugby to consistently adopt the shortest-term thinking possible.

  • Comment 61, posted at 26.08.16 14:04:14 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 57) : and you might have to ditch the Cheetahs as well . not going back to the Cats . no ways

  • Comment 62, posted at 26.08.16 14:09:25 by Zibbie Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 60) : I think this will happen either way even if its one SA and one Aus team

  • Comment 63, posted at 26.08.16 14:15:04 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 61) : Just ditch the Kings, merge the Rebels and Force, add a team from US, considering that there seems to be a real push for a global season.

    Personally, I’d love to see a World Cup for franchises/clubs every two years after Rwc.

  • Comment 64, posted at 26.08.16 14:18:31 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • @vanmartin (Comment 61) : :oops: :idea: :lol:

  • Comment 65, posted at 26.08.16 14:19:05 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 64) : I think adding a US team will dilute the comp even more. Plus whats the point to have a team like the japan side who mostly consists of imported players? That’s like asking the Barbarians to join in every WC.

  • Comment 66, posted at 26.08.16 14:21:11 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 63) : I think it would be slightly easier to ditch the Kings on financial grounds. And then probably the Force based on lack of interest in the area- think Aussie rules trumps there.

  • Comment 67, posted at 26.08.16 14:25:32 by SheldonK Reply

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  • It’s our fifth team that always struggles for position….we definitely have the player stocks to put out a fifth competitive team, saru might as well pour the wasted Kings fund into the tsietas, help them contract quality fringe players from around the country, and send the mobi-unit there to assist with coaching.

    At least the tsietas management has the basic capacity to not sink the franchise, they just need some assistance.

    Put the Kings pipe dream to bed, until such a time as the Kings management are able to run a CC franchise without going bust.

  • Comment 68, posted at 26.08.16 14:29:28 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • The problem is that since the 95 WC when Kerry Packer sowed the seeds of professional rugby,the control of rugby has slowly slipped out of the hands of the Rugby Unions and into the hands of the television networks.They are the ones dictating the game,

  • Comment 69, posted at 26.08.16 14:32:33 by The hound Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 66) : US team will serve as the sixth SA team….plenty of SA’ns playing over there it seems.

    But I get your point, the purpose will mostly be to stimulate rugby growth in the US, and to rack up the $$$

  • Comment 70, posted at 26.08.16 14:36:18 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • I don’t understand what you all think a US based team is going to bring to this comp? :shock: How much do you know about the state of rugby in the US at the club level? Why do you think it will bring in any money to the comp, let alone droves of supporters? I have been living in the USA for a very long time, I played a lot of rugby here after I left SA, so am very familiar with the rugby here. Efforts have been made for almost 20 years to start a professional league here, first effort being the Super League which started the last year I played. Each effort has failed miserably, one after the other. The top players still go to Europe because there is very little money available for a US professional league. They have not secured any high dollar television contract, they are not bringing in more than 5,000 to 12,000 people into the stadiums. The level of pro rugby here is so far below Europe and the Southern Hemisphere that any attempt to include them at this time is just a waste of time and money.

  • Comment 71, posted at 26.08.16 15:52:44 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 71) : Isnt there a new professional league starting in the USA?

  • Comment 72, posted at 26.08.16 15:55:42 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKAssistant coach
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 71) : ….and how would you go about fixing it?

    I see Pedrie Wannenburg now plays over there, if I’m not mistaken he plays for Andre Snyman’s team.

    From Snyman’s Twitter feed, it seemed as though rugby is making headway up there, and seems their 7′s national team is receiving a fair bit of funding.

    It is a sleeping giant, and if they take rugby serious, they’ll be a financial powerhouse.

    Money seems to be the only reason for Japan’s SR inclusion….a Rwc victory over the Boks didn’t hurt their numbers.

    Follow the Japan template, and US rugby could enjoy a surprise awakening.

  • Comment 73, posted at 26.08.16 16:04:00 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @SheldonK (Comment 72) : Yes there is, but there have been start up professional leagues before, none have succeeded. Travel costs alone are prohibitive since there is very little sponsorship available. With no television contract with a relatively big name network means little or no income, and small viewership means few sponsors.
    @FireTheLooser (Comment 73) : I know everyone looks to the US as this sleeping rugby giant, just waiting to be woken up. But it is just no like that, if you think rugby union has competition in Australia, you have no idea how it is here in America, there quite simply is no window to play a rugby season where there is not unconquerable competition from one or more major league sports. Soccer can not even crack the nod as a major sports here in the USA. And if people are not watching NFL, NBA, NHL, MBA, etc., they are spending all weekend watching NASCAR. Sorry my friend, but rugby union is just low on the list here, and that is not going to change. Why take rugby seriously when there are billions of dollars already spend on Gridiron, Basketball, Ice Hockey, Baseball, etc

  • Comment 74, posted at 26.08.16 17:06:29 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • I as much or more than anyone would love to see rugby succeed in this country. There are so few high school students who play rugby in the US, a vast majority end up going to rugby after playing Basketball or Football in high school and never made it any further. So rugby is getting second or even third tier athletes here in the US. If you are super fast, have an incredible step, can hand off any tackler, guess what, you’re going to the NFL, not rugby. So sorry, no sleeping giant.

  • Comment 75, posted at 26.08.16 17:32:45 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 74) : Seems the yanks prefer competing in sports where international competition (and interest) is close to non existent.

    Oh well, maybe time to awake the Russian giant, have them talk trash about the yanks, and the two countries will realise the rugby field is the best place to fight war. :)

  • Comment 76, posted at 26.08.16 17:35:35 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 76) : …a big-mouth powerful anti-hero Russian rugby team will surely speak to the American “super-hero complex”….they just absolutely live for their vilification of others….yanks love hating their villains ;)

  • Comment 77, posted at 26.08.16 17:40:42 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 75) : If you are massively built and quick, with strong legs and a great center of balance, guess what, you’re playing Guard or Tackle in the NFL. If you can tackle anything that comes your way, you are playing safety in the NFL. If you can catch you are a receiver in the NFL. There are I think 32 NFL teams (hard to keep count) each with 3 backups in each position, and each position duplicated in the starting lineup. Rugby may be getting the 300th best players with these skills.

  • Comment 78, posted at 26.08.16 17:43:39 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 76) : Yanks are very self centered, they reckon everyone should just play their sports. Seemed to work with things like basketball and baseball, now being olympic sports. Also remember that the Yanks couldn’t even play golf without changing the ball to a bigger one, and now the whole world plays with what the Yanks changed to. That just adds to their self centeredness. Most are very confused as to how Rugby could possibly be in the olympics and not gridiron. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 79, posted at 26.08.16 17:48:13 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 77) : ….and how do we turn Russia into a power house rugby team? Give their rugby players a 5 year dope-test holiday, voilà, we have our evil villain:twisted:

  • Comment 80, posted at 26.08.16 17:49:56 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 79) : …how do you survive among them :shock: :)

  • Comment 81, posted at 26.08.16 17:51:37 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 77) : Haven’t you seen, the US has implemented a new cold war. Now we just call all their athletes drug cheats and if necessary refuse to compete with them. :twisted:

  • Comment 82, posted at 26.08.16 17:53:54 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 81) : Daily challenge my friend, remember, this is the country that is offering me a choice of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, both horribly dishonest, incredibly arrogant, consider themselves above the law (and everyone else). I have to say though, that on pure entertainment factor alone, Trump takes it hands down. :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

  • Comment 83, posted at 26.08.16 17:56:54 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 80) : Yes, but see my previous post, the US has a new way of dealing with the Russians, they no longer try to be the hero (unless they know 100% they will win), they just accuse all Russians of being drug cheats and refuse to compete with them if necessary. :lol:

  • Comment 84, posted at 26.08.16 17:58:25 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 82) : That’s how I know, Yanks love their villains….they couldn’t care less about WW2, then Japan dare to bomb them, and the yanks not only make war against Japan, they go after Hitler for good measure.

    It really can’t be that hard to sucker the yanks into thinking they’re doing the world a favour by taking rugby seriously….just some clever marketing, some mouthing off, and a few backroom deals….sounds like a job for SA politicians. :twisted:

  • Comment 85, posted at 26.08.16 17:59:15 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 85) : All well and good, but you have to convince the NASCAR fans…..HAVE YOU SEEN THE NASCAR FANS???? :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

  • Comment 86, posted at 26.08.16 18:01:05 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 86) : When I was a kid, a friend got one of those electric car race tracks, it was two cars going around in a circle pretty fast, interspersed with one of the cars flying off the track at some unforeseen moment. It was awesome for an 8 year old….for about an hour (and then we went outside and played rugby)……but seriously, that is NASCAR, and these people dedicate whole weekends, or certainly all day Sunday to it.

  • Comment 87, posted at 26.08.16 18:04:18 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 84) : I love that self-righteousness of the yanks – who cares that they swept 114 positive doping results from just before the 1988 Olympics under the rug…..also hold the record for a single athlete being stripped of the most gold medals in the history of Olympics….and some 4 of their Rio athletes had been previously banned from competing because of doping….ai tog, difficult for a nation to be that self-righteous

  • Comment 88, posted at 26.08.16 18:05:37 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 86) : NASCAR fans: voted for Bush, and tried to kill the Top Gear team for dissing NASCAR and Bush….special inbreed of people it seems. :)

  • Comment 89, posted at 26.08.16 18:07:12 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 89) : ….and Mountain Dew, lots of Moun’in dooo

  • Comment 90, posted at 26.08.16 18:08:38 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 88) : My friend you have no idea. A vast majority of yanks have no idea what is happening in their own country, let alone anywhere else. When I was 14 and moved from SA to the US, you have no idea the stories I told people about SA simply because they were so gullible and uninformed.

  • Comment 91, posted at 26.08.16 18:11:32 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 83) : Those two, giving you a choice between selling your soul to satan, or selling your body and soul to satan….how’s Canada looking these days, or Mexico for that matter? :mrgreen:

  • Comment 92, posted at 26.08.16 18:12:20 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 90) : Apparently I have some ‘splaning to do, no NASCAR fan would ever be seen with a Mountain Dew in his hand, his hands are needed for beer, and besides, a can of Mountain Dew just takes up the same amount of room as a beer, so not going to do it. It is the generation Xers that are all into their Mountain Dew and Red Bull with everything they do.

  • Comment 93, posted at 26.08.16 18:13:45 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 91) : I’m certain that, under US law, you are allowed to sue your parents for child abuse….moving there of your own accord is one thing, but being forced to go – cruelty of the highest order :)

  • Comment 94, posted at 26.08.16 18:15:19 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 94) : Well considering the state of South Africa at the time we left, might be a hard argument to win. ;-)

  • Comment 95, posted at 26.08.16 18:17:28 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 93) : So you mean there’s a group of people even dumber than NASCAR fans :shock:

  • Comment 96, posted at 26.08.16 18:17:37 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • So does this mean that rugby as a sport is not as healthy as we think in the southern hemisphere. Does the poaching by northern hemisphere have something to do with this?

  • Comment 97, posted at 26.08.16 18:20:35 by coolfusion Reply

    coolfusionTeam captain
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 94) : And worse, I had to endure being sent to a speech therapist in school, they thought I had a speech impediment because I had a South African accent. Now that is some serious pain and suffering right there!!! :lol:

  • Comment 98, posted at 26.08.16 18:20:37 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 96) : shhhhhh we don’t discuss SA politics here!!! :lol:

  • Comment 99, posted at 26.08.16 18:21:20 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 99) : Ooh snap, nice one ;)

  • Comment 100, posted at 26.08.16 18:22:42 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @coolfusion (Comment 97) : It is all economics. At this time, northern hemisphere currency is just much stronger than rands or Aus and NZ dollars.

  • Comment 101, posted at 26.08.16 18:22:53 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 22) : True. Might be swopping an argies for a us. Neither country able to field more than one real team.

  • Comment 102, posted at 26.08.16 18:23:40 by coolfusion Reply

    coolfusionTeam captain
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 101) : It is the problem. Just thinking about the effects.

  • Comment 103, posted at 26.08.16 18:35:31 by coolfusion Reply

    coolfusionTeam captain
     
  • Finally this format comes under scrutiny

  • Comment 104, posted at 26.08.16 22:33:16 by Sharkfinn Reply

    Under 21 player
     
  • Barrett starting to make Carter in his prime look ordinary. Everything he does seem to turn to gold.

  • Comment 105, posted at 27.08.16 10:05:03 by Bokhoring Reply
    Administrator
    BokhoringAssistant coach
     
  • So the Aus teams are all in the red and the plan is to cut SA teams.

    Somehow I cannot take this Aus plan seriously.

    @Dancing Bear (Comment 83) :

    That should be an easy choice. Even if you abhor Clinton. Trump’s ideas, style and tactics have a recent historical precedent. 1930′s Germany. Make…….great again?

    Anyway. In SA, your choice would have been between Zuma and Malema, the Brits voted for exit. The Austrian almost elected a fascist. The Filipinos did. The Russians, Venezuelans and Argentinians did so repeatedly.
    I’m still optimistic that we’ll dodge that particular bullet and still frigging glad I moved here when I did.

  • Comment 106, posted at 27.08.16 17:58:43 by fyndraai Reply
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    fyndraaiTeam captain
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 96) :

    Believe it or not, there are…..eg.

    http://www.sport24.co.za/Rugby/Springboks/Throwback-Thursday-Piet-van-Zyl-20150521

  • Comment 107, posted at 27.08.16 18:03:18 by fyndraai Reply
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