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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Something super is coming to rugby - Super Rugby launch

Something super is coming to rugby - Super Rugby launch

In case you haven't heard yet, yesterday saw the launch of the newly formed Super 15 tournament, now with an extra team (Melbourne Rebels), a new format, and re-branded as Super Rugby .

Theres plenty of change for the tournament, not only with the Rebels joining, but with more games, more derbies, and a longer tournament that is bound to test the depth of each respective squad.

Just so theres no confusion, theyve come up with a new, blue logo, and the 15 teams will come from a new three conference system, made up of South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. Each team will play the other four teams in their conference twice and four of the other two conferences away, as well as four teams of the other conferences at home. Still following?

What it means is that each team wont play each other, and two will be missed out, one from each of the other conferences.

There will be more derby matches, and of each of the 16 league matches that a team will play, 12 will be in their home country. The finals will be made up of a three-week, six-team finals series, which the winner of each conference will automatically qualify for.

The other three teams with the highest total competition points, no matter which conference theyre from, will take up the next three spots.

There will be an increase in overall matches of 33%, from 94 to 125. In non-World Cup years there will be a 50% increase in the length of the season, and in World Cup years, only a 31% increase, with it changing from 16 weeks to 21 weeks.

The common perception from players, coaches, and even some fans, is that there is too much rugby at the moment, especially when we look at attendance figures in some parts. While its sure to be entertaining, is this really the best way forward, or are we looking at revenue figures being put ahead of the well being of the sport?

This video gives you a better understanding of whats to come, and shows a little bit of how we got to this point. Excuse the last minute, which for whatever reason just shows that interesting new logo. Feel free to share your thoughts below.


Time: 03:11

Posted at 12:49 pm | 78 comments

Viewing 78 comments

Craig Anthony September 14, 2010 2:39 pm

Does this put the Pumas joining Super Rugby out of the question?

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Bradders September 14, 2010 2:39 pm

If i was a big twat id say what other twats say when commenting before others. But I wont.

Should be just "Super".

Is there a salary cap on the current S14 league?

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Greiffel September 14, 2010 2:44 pm

Craig, if by Pumas you mean Argentina, they're actually already joining the 'Tri Nations' in 2012. I cant wait for that logo.. :P

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 2:47 pm

that logo is utter crap, looks like a news channel logo or something.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 2:47 pm

Craig & greiff: and apart from that it will actually make it easier to introduce an argentinian conference into super rugby over the years

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VictorSoCalRuggger September 14, 2010 2:49 pm

does anyone else think that this is the death of super rugby. after reading the new formats. each team will play 16 games, 12 of those game will be home country derbies. the top team from each country automatically has a spot in the semi finals. (correct me if im wrong). this is my opinion, but i dont want 3/4 of the season to be local games, thats what the currie cup is for and so on and so forth!

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Spencah September 14, 2010 2:50 pm

making it super 15 was always going to happen, the more local derbies, longer finals etc are good but an increase in overall season length for players is not good hey. I bet you the players are not happy with this......

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 2:55 pm

I don't think Argentina have a club team anywhere near super rugby level yet. Their national team plays in Europe for the most part. Didn't know they were confirmed for the tri-nations though. 4 nations from 2012 then? Maybe it's the end of the world as we know it after all! ;)

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 2:56 pm

In terms of what rugbydump said as "being too much rugby"

I don think this is the case. i think we need to be smarter about the way we structure the season. At the moment, we have a far-too-short super rugby season, in which teams play teams from other countries too much and not enough local derbies.

Can you imagine the interest in Sydney when the waratahs take on queensland for a guaranteed position in the finals, instead of playing the cheetahs away for spot in a semi that they may play away from home?

In addition, (i may cop some flak for this) but we will be limiting the number of tests we play against touring teams. I mean lets be honest, when SA,NZ,AUS tour for the grand slam it bears alot of significance, however ireland, england and france have often used this tour as a development tour. i like the idea of going straight to a tri nations. The stakes are high from the get go, and as soon as test rugby comes along, you know its hell for leather, all or nothing rugby, not a game where basically the south africa A side takes on the majority of the england saxons players.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 2:58 pm

seems like SA and NZ have lost their domestic competitions so that Aus can have one.

I am not sure how this has happened as its 2 vs 1 and i thought SA rugby union were the big money spinners because of the crowds and viewing rights.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 3:22 pm

No offence, but everyone knows that although the southern hemisphere has the "better players" the "super" rughy competition is not the biggest OR best. No team could ever win the european cup 7 times in a row like the Crusaders. Anyway I was at the Final in Christchurch, crusaders vs Warathas, and only 25,000 people there. Peaople voted with there feet that day. Its a failed competition and only John O' Neill is pushing for it. In time SA will leave and so FAIL FAIL FAIL. Munster Fan, Ireland.

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jackohos September 14, 2010 3:54 pm

A few points:

- One of the conditions of Argentina's entry into the Quad(?) nations was that their best players would be available. This has partly been achieved by the IRB just moving the international window. However, the vast majority of Argentina's players still play for European clubs where the money is better than in 'Super Rugby'. I think 'Super Rugby' would benefit from their inclusion but it'll be difficult to persuade them to swaps pounds or euros for the rand etc.

- Season length is longer but...Premiership in England is 22 games before the playoffs, add in games for European tournaments and Anglo Welsh Cup. Super Rugby + the NPC/Currie Cup is still a lot less.

- New logo is rubbish

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Winston September 14, 2010 4:05 pm

looks shite.

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goodNumber10 September 14, 2010 4:20 pm

LOL @ Jim Cowan....

Think the new sysem is too complicated with too many permutations - bit like the curry cup when each league played each other but no one in their own league etc... :/

But I'm sure the tournament will be exceptional.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 4:23 pm

Maybe it will finally stop NH crying that SH teams are playing less rugby so their players are in better shape playing for their country. We won't have any excuse after this and would be forced to admit once and for all that they're better.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 4:33 pm

bugger, bitter and bist yit.

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Dana September 14, 2010 4:51 pm

I'm not a fan of this format...

Local Derbys?!?!?!?! SA and NZ dont need more Local Derbys....

Aussies are pushing it hard coz they dont have a Currie Cup or NPC....

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Chris September 14, 2010 4:53 pm

Aussies are pushing it hard because not only is rugby behind AFL, League and Cricket, but now Soccer is pulling up on Rugby in Australia.

They NEED this.

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Benson September 14, 2010 5:34 pm

Yeah they do, but that's not NZ & SA's problem. This will cause serious issues for the Currie Cup & ITM Cup, where local derbies are what make them unique and well supported.

Hopefully it all goes well though. I just wish they'd had more than 20 minutes to design the logo

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olwakachangchang September 14, 2010 5:50 pm

I won't e the death of super rugby, people say that about any change in any sport.

But I didn't feel excited by the prospect of more games and a longer season, not at all.

Australians may feel otherwise because of their lack of a decent club competition. But as a kiwi I feel a lot more passion for my local team than I do for the super team still. In the super comp I just want to see an NZ team win and it doesn't really matter who.

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mudbutt September 14, 2010 6:41 pm

Aussies just need to get their shit together and improve their provincial competition. But then again, maybe they don't - look at the ITM cup and the attendance is nowhere near what it is the rest of the year (people are "rugby'd out"). So that's no guarantee of increasing rugby attention in OZ...that's the problem of making rugby professional though: for the suits up top, if the sport isn't "growing", then it's "dying" and they'll change it up to keep it "fresh".

In any case, I'm excited for Super Rugby and the HC to start!!

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K Lu September 14, 2010 7:59 pm

I think overall in southern and northern hemisphere rugby there are simply too many games being playes. Between the normal leagues (Magners, Premiership, Top 14, ITM Cup, and now Super Rugby) there is the Heineken Cup, Currie Cup, Angl-Welsh Cup, etc etc. Not to mention the International Tests, 6 nations, Tri-Nations and British & Irish Lions Tour. I mean all of the above is done ANNUALLY!!

I LOVE Rugby, but this is too much - too many miles put under the feet of the players, not enough recovery time, too many injuries and lower quality of play resulting from it. I think they need to scale back, not expand the number of matches Ruggers are playing every year. I mean the elite players are essentially playing year around, with VERY little break betweent heir club responsibilities and that of their country's.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:14 pm

I like how Jimmy Cowan doesn't seem to be taking the marketing bs seriously, someone behind the camera is obviously trying to rev him up "more gusto Jimmy, say the lines like you mean them!"

Anyway, sounds like too much rugby, there seems to be a slow decline in interest here in NZ, and saturating the market, along with the patronizing and sometimes vomit inducing advertising doesn't help. (eg. kiwi bloke in some paddock ,bleeding black blood..give the public a little credit, we do know the advertiser just wants our money)

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:18 pm

From what I've read from the comments above and what I know:

The Super 14 produces imo the most exciting rugby to watch. and as a NH Wasps fan I often envy the pace and skill on show in the comp over the premiership. But...

Like the last couple of comments state. People clearly feel more passion for their local teams than the regional ones.

NZ and SA imo have made a massive sacrifice in pulling their national team players out of their domestic competitions, so they can play super rugby. Those two comps have the potential to Out-Gun the Aviva Prem, Top14 and Magners league by miles. The curry cup already has and average attendance of 11,000! And thats in the sorry state that it's now as a secondary comp. with only 8 teams in the league (which btw is creating a horrible divide between the top 5 teams and the lower 9)

In Contrast. The aviva prem is 14,000... And we plug our domestic competition like crazy.

Going by stadium sizes alone The Currie Cup has the potential (as a 12/14 team home+away league) to have a maximum average attendance of ~34,000. 34,000!

Thats more than the english football league, which over here in the uk is bigger than God.

SA! Get your Currie Cup comp back to the top and make it bigger. People don't support franchises; they support their identity. And local teams represent that far more than regional teams: most of the time, who only effectively represent one local team anyway.

Also the ITM cup has the potential to get a maximum average attendance of around 20,000. which again would smash the NH competitions aswell. But what's the point of paying good money to see your team play if all the internationals who grew up playing for your team are resting? Sunny Bill williams played for a 2nd (might be wrong) division team not so long ago and doubled the crowd watching whilst he was playing. Christ! Can u imagine a if few ABs had showed up too?


I think the big mistake by Super Rugby was to make the Super 10/12/14 a regionalised comp. It shud have simply been an HC style comp pitting local teams from each country in an international competition. That way, any inclusion of other international teams in the future like Hindu Club (Arg), Suntory Goliath (Jap) or Fiji Warriors (PNC) could have fitted in easily without rearranging the entire league system just to do so.

I seriously think for the sake of AUS that SA and NZ, the two most rugby loving countries are gona lose their chance to rekindle two very good leagues if they don't do something about them soon.

When are gona see Eden Park packed with 60,000 fans for a classic between Aukland and Canterbury? Not when all the ABs are out the squad that's for sure.

When are we gona see the Griquas or EP Kings win the currie cup? Not while the money is being poured into only 5 teams.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:19 pm

From what I've read from the comments above and what I know:

The Super 14 produces imo the most exciting rugby to watch. and as a NH Wasps fan I often envy the pace and skill on show in the comp over the premiership. But...

Like the last couple of comments state. People clearly feel more passion for their local teams than the regional ones.

NZ and SA imo have made a massive sacrifice in pulling their national team players out of their domestic competitions, so they can play super rugby. Those two comps have the potential to Out-Gun the Aviva Prem, Top14 and Magners league by miles. The curry cup already has and average attendance of 11,000! And thats in the sorry state that it's now as a secondary comp. with only 8 teams in the league (which btw is creating a horrible divide between the top 5 teams and the lower 9)

In Contrast. The aviva prem is 14,000... And we plug our domestic competition like crazy.

Going by stadium sizes alone The Currie Cup has the potential (as a 12/14 team home+away league) to have a maximum average attendance of ~34,000. 34,000!

Thats more than the english football league, which over here in the uk is bigger than God.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:19 pm

SA! Get your Currie Cup comp back to the top and make it bigger. People don't support franchises; they support their identity. And local teams represent that far more than regional teams: most of the time, who only effectively represent one local team anyway.

Also the ITM cup has the potential to get a maximum average attendance of around 20,000. which again would smash the NH competitions aswell. But what's the point of paying good money to see your team play if all the internationals who grew up playing for your team are resting? Sunny Bill williams played for a 2nd (might be wrong) division team not so long ago and doubled the crowd watching whilst he was playing. Christ! Can u imagine a if few ABs had showed up too?


I think the big mistake by Super Rugby was to make the Super 10/12/14 a regionalised comp. It shud have simply been an HC style comp pitting local teams from each country in an international competition. That way, any inclusion of other international teams in the future like Hindu Club (Arg), Suntory Goliath (Jap) or Fiji Warriors (PNC) could have fitted in easily without rearranging the entire league system just to do so.

I seriously think for the sake of AUS that SA and NZ, the two most rugby loving countries are gona lose their chance to rekindle two very good leagues if they don't do something about them soon.

When are gona see Eden Park packed with 60,000 fans for a classic between Aukland and Canterbury? Not when all the ABs are out the squad that's for sure.

When are we gona see the Griquas or EP Kings win the currie cup? Not while the money is being poured into only 5 teams.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:20 pm

woops!

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:23 pm

Seems like The Aussies took one quick look at the NRL and said we want that. And then convinced NZ and SA to do the same thing. NRL is really commercialised, but it works cos all the teams have history and its local eh.

NPC cud be just as big if they did what the NRL did for its league.

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:31 pm

Whatever happened to playing in a normal league?

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 8:54 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LeqW_P-jGRs

look at this video and tell me the npc needed the super 14...

View Video

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Jeremy September 14, 2010 10:02 pm

33% more games! Are they trying to work them to death?!

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Anonymous September 14, 2010 10:25 pm

This will be the end of the Currie Cup - The oldest cup in Rugby.

All in order to fill Oregon Hoskins pocket. Up yours SARU. Break away from this Sanzar shite!I would certainly miss the Currie Cup more than this Super Rugby crap.

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Blizzy September 15, 2010 12:27 am

everyone bemoaning about the death of currie cup is stuck in the past. time to move on and up, super rugby is simply better rugby than currie cup. thats it. theres a few big games between the top teams in a currie cup season worth watching; the rest is truely inferior teams getting destroyed. its boring. allbeit the lions didn't have a win last S14 season there is still much better competition between the teams and better talent on display.

also i love the new super rugby extended format. and just to be contrary i love the new logo too, you all know nothing about graphic design.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 1:27 am

I think the last minute of video is subliminal messaging...look closely...you can see the words
" this is an awesome logo, it was cheaper if we used only 2 colors, it really is an awesome logo, seriously, no really, my kid was NOT just learning the letter S, the other logo was too dynamic and scared mothers, you will like this logo, drink the kool-aid."

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Jono September 15, 2010 2:39 am

So many ignorant people.

The reason the S14 is expanding at the expense of domestic comps is because the broadcasters (the ones who provide the millions of dollars, who support the sport in the SH and allow it be proffesional - Newscorp to be specific) want to see more Super Rugby, that's where the tv audiences are, that's where the money is.
It doesn't matter to Newscorp that this will devalue the Currie Cup and ITM Cup marginally, they want Super rugby to be expanded, so that's what SANZAR has done.

Inr egards to people syaing Super rugby isn't a good comp, you lot are kidding yourselves, you've got your heads so far up your arses, you're probably seeing daylight.
Super rugby produces the world's best players and the world's best coaches.
That's why NH clubs are constantly poaching them. It's why New Zealand, Australia and South africa are nos 1, 2 and 3 in the world with a big gap to the next best Europeans.
Becuase their players play in the toughest, fastest most high skilled and well coached non-test match rugby competition in the world.
Obviously.
Anyone who can't see that is either being intentionally obtuse, to make themselves feel better about their own inferior competitions (read Magners league, Aviva premiership, T14, HC) or they just don't know a damn thing about rugby, it's history and how to tell quality play.

As evidence see the South african fitness trainers statements about the stats produced by players in the respective comps.
He compared GPS stats provided by clubs in the NH to GPS stats of players in S14, and found that players in Europe cover roughly half as much as ground as S14 players in a game.
He also found that the ball in Europe rarely travels more than five metres from the ruck on any given play.
Pedestrian, slow and predictable sums up European rugby. It's why European teams lag behind the SANZAR teams.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 3:13 am

Wow fuck all you nay sayers.

Why is everyone so quick to rubbish it. The super 14 is a stagnant product, it needed a change, they have attempted it, if it fails in the next 2 years, by all means go nuts and throw your toys out of your cot.

And yes, australia does need this, but it seems as though most of you guys are willing to feed them to the wolves just because they dont have the finances to support another seperate rugby comp in australia. sounds a familiar tale from the northern hemisphere queer cunts, who want rugby to be played in the UK and france, and thats it.

And to the joker who said 25000 people were at that final..jeez you are a blind old gay cunt, because if you tilted your fuckin toothless irish head to the left or right, you would have realised the ground was under construction that year you fuckin old cocksucker. Worry about ireland first bro, you cunts are doing worse than any SH team.

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Ideas Man September 15, 2010 3:17 am

Jono your Newscorp line just gave you away as a strident Australian who obviously knows nothing of the situation in NZ or SA. We had fully developed comps that were regularly attracting HUGE crowds decades before SANZAR came along. Don't lump us along with you like our situations are similar. The fact is Australia had a go at implementing their own provincial comp but they're such a Mickey Mouse outfit they couldn't get it right. If SANZAR were dismantled the CC and NPC would receive more money and flourish. Not only this but our unions would be forced to bite the bullet and realise players can do what they want, and so allow overseas talent in the National team.

SANZAR was nothing more than a bunch of naive, newly cashed-up, rugby boofheads deciding that all of a sudden the game is professional and we need some sort of American over-hyped "franchise" system.

I say dissolve SANZAR. Australia will either find a way to retain most of their players or they won't. Either way it won't really affect their national team, just turn them into Argentina ;)

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Jono September 15, 2010 3:49 am

Yes I'm an Australian.

Do you honestly think Rupert Murdoch gives a fuck about how great rugby used to be in the ITM and Currie Cups?
Do you think he gives a shit about your emotive arguments (which I understand, and I don't think it's bad to be emotional about it)?
He is a business man, Newscorp is a business.
They see Super rugby as the best product, and that's what they want top fund, that's what they want to expand.
Anyone with any sense can see this.
It doesn't matter to this massive company that this will be detrimental to domestic comps in NZ and SA.
It's about tv audiences, expanding markets, revenue, they don't give a shit about your love of your domestic comp.

I understand that's dissapointing to you, and I can see why it would be.
But it doesn't matter to anyone in a position of power, they do what's best for their bank balances.

At the end of the day the lifeblood of SANZAR (and the indivdual unions it represents) is the tv revenue from Newscorp.
As such, the heads of the unions (rightly) will do what Newscorp asks, because it means the continued financial success of their unions, and by extension their domestic teams, players, franchises, development pathways, national teams etc.

I get what your saying. Australia doesn't have a domestic comp of note so it's benefical for them, but not for NZ or SA in terms of the health of their comps, which are great, historic competitions.

But that doesn't matter at the end of the day, and no amount of emotive argument will change that.
Blame money.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 3:52 am

Newscorp has sweef F#@% all to do with SA and NZ. Try Super Sport and Sky TV. What are you goin on about rupert murdoch for outside Oz we couldn't give a flying F@$#

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Ideas Man September 15, 2010 4:02 am

Retarded argument. An NPC, CC, and revised australian comp with a Tourney at the end to decide the grand Poobah of the three comps would be worth far more money to each of the broadcasters involved. Your money argument is more about naivety than business sense.

AFL and NRL are worth a billion each. A conservative estimate would put the value of the CC at almost a billion if it wasn't overshadowed by Super Rugby. NPC could potentially be on the healthy side of 500 mil, and a new Aussie Comp could be looking at about 300 mil in its early years. Add to that broadcasting rights for a HC type tourney and you're looking at maybe 200 mil for each of the unions. That's just in its infancy stage.

This kind of forward thinking far and away outstrips a pathetic imitation of the NFL.

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Jono September 15, 2010 4:13 am

Anon, Supersport are affiliates of Newscorp.
Sy tv is woend by Newscorp.
Newscorp is a parent company.
Supersport is largely independent, but are affiliates and buy the rights.
Iregardless, they also do not give a shit about your emotive arguments.
They are also businesses. the same logic and reasoning applies.
If they wanted more Currie Cup and ITM at the expense of Super rugby and Australia, that's what they would buy. They decide content, they decide what they buy. They decide the best product.
They have chosen Super Rugby, they have advocated expansion of that competition. If you don't like that, take it up with them.
Obviously.

Ideas man, I tell you what.
Take your incredible idea to the heads of the broadcasting corporations that buy the rights and have advocated the expansion.
Explain to them your marvelous new idea for the future of rugby.
Explain to them how it will generate more revenue for them, more ratings and new and expanding markets for them to exploit.
Rememeber to bring your costings and make sure you wear a tie.
Good luck.

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Ideas Man September 15, 2010 4:32 am

Jono Broadcasters buy the product but they don't decide the product. The SANZAR unions are well capable of defining what product it is they wish to provide. Your idea that Australia is the biggest player in the SANZAR partnership is laughable as is your (paranoid) conception that Rupert Murdoch personally gives a rats about Rugby broadcasting. We have enough of this speculation in NRL punditry, don't try to bring this kind of circus act into rugby discussion; it simply does not belong.

If the ARU wasn't such a mess there is no way you would be peddling this tripe so aggressively.

As for the patronising throwaway at the end of your post... I think anybody who genuinely believes "irregardless" is a word is on a hiding to nothing in the life stakes so I'll let you have that.

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Jono September 15, 2010 4:48 am

yeah, I figured you'd attack me personally.
Whatever mate, your idea has about as much chance of being implimented by anyone as a snowball's chance in hell.
"Ideas man" - what a joke.

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Ideas Man September 15, 2010 5:02 am

Whether it is implemented or not is irrelevant. The point is SA and NZ's proud rugby heritage is slowly being ruined because we entered into this unholy alliance with Australia who promise so much and deliver so little. You basically said yourself that SA and NZ had a better thing going than when Aus arrived.

Your money argument is rubbish for many reasons but primarily because Australia isn't even the main source of it. This whole argument is about getting to the point where you can realise that, argue as much as you like, this partnership benefits only Australia. Meaning 2 thirds of those involved would be better off if Super Rugby didn't exist.

Don't give us "Super Rugby must exist for the good of all." Super Rugby is not the golden goose. Rugby itself is the golden goose and broadcasters will buy it whatever the format.

We have our tribalism already and now it is being destroyed at the expense of creating pseudo-tribalism in Australia.

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Jono September 15, 2010 5:28 am

Ideas man, thanks for not making it personal, there's no need mate.
We can talk about this, even get fired up about it, without attacking each other.
So let's just be rational.

In response to what you're saying, you are right in some ways.
I can see where you're coming from, it must be difficult for you to see what's become of the ITM Cup. That would suck, and I'm sorry about that (though it aint my fault).

I never said what your attributing to me.
I don't think Australia is the main source of income, far from it. South Africa is. I didn't ever say Super rugby is good for everyone. I didn't really even offer my personal opinion of the way forward or which comp is better.

I have a huge amount of respect for the Currie Cup and ITM Cup. I can see why it would piss you off you that Australia pushes so hard for Super rugby expansion, since it only benefits them, while it detracts from the domestic competitions of New Zealand and South Africa.

The point I was making is that it doesn't matter what you and I think of it. We are just a couple of rugby fans talking shit and shooting the breeze.

These descisions are made by powerful business people and administrators. They have deemed this the most economically viable way to go.

In terms of the economics of it, there's millions of dollars in this.
Some very talented accoutants and economists have decided that this is the way forward economically.
I see their reasons, you don't, I doubt we'll get past that.

I think you are being somewhat naive with your ideas for the way rugby should be.

I was being a smartarse when I said you should wear a tie and go talk to the heads of the broadcasting corporations, but I was making a point.

If you genuinly believe you have a better way, you really should take it up with the people making the descisions. If there was enough of a groundswell of support and the people who decide honestly believed in the economic viablity and advantage of your concept, or a concept similar to it, they would take it up.

Also, of course the broadcasting companies have a say in the expansion of Super Rugby. If SANZAR took the product to them, do you think they would just say "Ok, if that's what you want, we will pay you X amount of dollars for this."

Of coure not. They negotiate with SANZAR and present them. They express their views of the way forward. They lsiten to various porposals and veto or approve them. They offer ideas of their own and advocate their own position. Then they put a price tag on it. And that price tag will be much higher if SANZAR offers what they want.

What they want is more revenue, more ratings, more bums in seats, more games, new markets, expansion of existing markets and they want it all to be under the umbrella of a recognised brand with mass market appeal.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 5:31 am

Wow the last R in Super is the first R in Rugby. Some cunt with a degree in marketing earning $100000 a year probably came up with that.

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Greiffel September 15, 2010 5:34 am

I cleaned up the mess, no stress, Jono.

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Jono September 15, 2010 5:37 am

Cheers mate.

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Ideas Man September 15, 2010 5:44 am

We all realise Super Rugby is here to stay, however, the ONLY agreeable end point is if all the CC and NPC teams are incorporated. Where are Aus going to come up with 10 extra teams, and how long are we going to wait around while they play catch up?

All the other hypotheticals merely point out how big a setback the Super Rugby format has been for the development of professional footy in all three countries. We could have had a 45 team conference comp 15 years ago if that's what they're after.

Even better we could have each had our own comp with a HC at the end. This current mess is what you're left with when a game suddenly becomes professional and you've got a bunch of boofheads running the show.

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Max September 15, 2010 5:58 am

Every time a new competition comes out people bitch about the logo. Then you don't even notice it. Who honestly cares what the logo looks like. Don't know if you've seen the ITM Cup logo but it looks retarded and we mostly just think its funny, not get upset by it. As long as the Rugby on display is good who cares?

This comp should be good. I don't have to watch my team play teams that don't interest me too often. Imagine a Man U fan never having to watch their team play Stoke!

Agree with Ideas Man that we need to aim towards getting the whole NPC in there. We've already got the grounds and the fans...

And that solves Jono's dollars point. If you could get it to at least 10 teams each you'd have huge market saturation. That's my 5 cents :)

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Jono September 15, 2010 6:16 am

Ideas Man, do you genuinly believe it would economically viable to include 20 new teams from NZ and South Africa?
The pie wouldn't get much bigger, it'd just get sliced more. The unions would be trying to do three times more with basically the exact same revenue stream.

Maybe in 20 years that would be viable.

In regards to Australia a financially succesful domestic competition is simply not an option.
There's too much competition, and it's Super rugby or nothing.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 7:49 am

Ideas Man 1 - 0 Jono....

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 8:03 am

The "ball" in the logo looks like an american football....

the rugby ball doesn't have laces...

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Ideas Man September 15, 2010 8:19 am

"Do you honestly think it would be viable"? Shit yes I do. It all ready is... In NZ and SA. This is what I'm getting at, Australia is a lodestone tied to our collective necks, slowly but inexorably dragging us away from what rugby could have been in our countries."I understand you would be pissed off" THANK GOD! This is all we want you to see. Stop harping on about how this is good for US. It is only good for YOU.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 9:07 am

Max:

I would argue against the Man U, Stoke comment. Think about what playing Man U does for a team like stoke... People would pack the stadium to see thier local team play the giants. People who identify themselves with the local side, who don't have the funds to travel miles to see Man U play at home (Although stoke is fairly close to manchester)

It's exactly what makes the English Premiership amazing. Because ur little local team could get an opportunity to test themselves against the best teams in the country with all the stars in it.

Plus a team like Man U is so popular that they'll sell out their stadium no matter who they play so revenue wise it makes no difference and for easy games they wud rest their key players anyway.

I personally think any domestic league should have 4 trophies to play for.

1. The league. Home and Away plus a play off.

2. League leaders shield: rewarding the most consistent team in the comp.

3. League Cup. Perhaps adding in all the teams from the lower leagues allowing them the opportunity to play the top teams in their country.
(When I did the calculations for this I predicted any premiership team playing a maximum of 5 rounds to win the final)

4. International cup. Playing in a 24 team comp. group stage, Round of 16 (maybe not tho), quarters, semis, final.

Again a maximum of 10 matches to win the final.

So a team in a 12 team comp that wins literally everything wud play a mximum of ~38-39 games in a season...

which is a hell of a lot I know. But it would give so much to play for each season.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 9:23 am

The npc wudn't be hard to reinstate. It's a well grounded, passionate and equally challenged comp already. I wud love to see it back at number 1.

I'm from england and even without the abs in it, it produces amazing rugby. the kind where u watch someone do something and think... how the F**k did he do that?!

it's brilliant.


The currie cup is pretty separated at the mo. so dunno if it'll ever go back to what it was. but if it did u've have a situation like that man utd thingy above. wud the blue bulls want to play the Valke twice in a season? or wud they see it as a waste of time?

But on the other hand wud valke fans pay to go and see thier team play the big guns? even if it meant getting smashed for several seasons why they tried to catch up?

aussies situation is very difficult. i think aus shud join the shute shield and qld premier together. add in a few teams from wa, melb and act. No franchising of teams this time tho (like ARC). Just allow teams to merge if they wish. put some money into stadium development or ground sharing (especially in sydney)

Keep the gates are around 10,000

Then have a state of origin series? i kno tahs v reds is always the biggest game of the super 14 season there.

Or maybe a 5 way inter regional comp at the end?

its difficult because u look at what aus has for a domestic comp. and realise there's nothing really there. Can see why they wanted super rugby. but maybe they were too impatient with the sport's development. shud have let it grow me thinks.

Dont think they shud be left out to dry tho.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 9:31 am

So is the final 6 series purely a league system or will there still be final. It would suck to lose the final.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 9:31 am

So is the final 6 series purely a league system or will there still be final. It would suck to lose the final.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 10:18 am

JOHNO hit it on the head. As a kiwi super rugby needs a shake up and having more local derbys is wot was needed. The players them self's agreer that people need more local games. John onell wasnt the only one who pushed for this idea it was the players them selfs.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 11:15 am

Jono can go fly a kite Im with Ideas Man. Aussie have given us fuck all. We can talk money till the cows come home but that won't hide the building resentment in SA and NZ.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 11:52 am

Hmmm, lots of Southern Hemisphere Information Technology in that promotion video.....

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sorry bad grammar September 15, 2010 11:54 am

isn't there any game between the best super rugby team against the reigning european champion. i'm quite sure there is lots of fans gonna watch that match. or perhaps the best 4 of hemisphere having a league to determine whose better

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NiWiTa September 15, 2010 12:26 pm

Seriously - @anon 1107 AM has an interesting point. Not that it matters because......as @jono says

"Anyone who can't see that is either being intentionally obtuse, to make themselves feel better about their own inferior competitions (read Magners league, Aviva premiership, T14, HC) or they just don't know a damn thing about rugby, it's history and how to tell quality play."

I guess being from the NH means I know nothing about rugby. Hope the competition proves enjoyable...

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 2:01 pm

when is australia gonna get their own domestic competition!they so shit!

NPC and Currie Cup ROCKS!!!!

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 2:14 pm

I really must remember not to read comments on the internet - reading the scrwalings of idiots and borderline bigots is enraging. I'm going to try never to do it again. Also, for that seething Southern Hemisphere guy who says anyone who can't recognise the clear superiority of the Super 14 competition is an idiot, I believe you missed the point that some people prefer the tribalism of supporting a local team rather than a regional franchise, and thus for them the Super 14 is less entertaining than say the HC. But it's all subjective and depends on what you prefer - better quality rugby, or more tribal passion. You'll have to learn at some stage that people with different opinions to you are not neccessarily idiots.

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rosh September 15, 2010 4:32 pm

i'm not ready lol
but really everyone hates change but we will just have to see how it works out.

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Anonymous September 15, 2010 8:22 pm

Even if Aus got a domestic comp no one here would watch it. At the lower levels rugby is a peripheral sport in this country.

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Jono September 15, 2010 10:55 pm

In regards to NH people. I was only talking about the quality of the play.
The Hc is a great comp, but the rugby isn't the same standard.
That might bug you, but it's true.

Most arguments against the Super rugby expansion are purley emotive.

I understand those arguments.

But it doesn't matter. These descisions aren't made emotionally or as a result of sentiment.

The powers that be deem Super rugby to be the best vehicle for generating revenue for their unions. They also see it as the best development pathway to maintain excellence in their rugby programs.

They have chosen this expansion. The broadcasters, the ones who provide the money, want this expansion.

They could have easily devalued Super rugby and invested their millions in buying the rights to the Currie Cup and the ITM Cup.

They didn't, because it doesn't make sense to them to do so. As it is the buy the rights to the domestic comps as part of the package, but it's just a sweetener for them. Super rugby and the Tri-nations is what they want.

Rail against that all you want, it won't make a lick of difference.

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Anonymous September 16, 2010 2:04 am

Jonos a Class A toss-pot...

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roaring 20s September 16, 2010 3:12 am

Whatever...rugby will still be fun to play on the pitch Saturday mornings, regardless of the fact that professionalism may in fact end up killing the game a bit.

I say that as an American who loves the NFL but at the same time hates the shit out of its commercialism. I'd hate to see professional rugby grow to be that vapid in 10 years. I just don't think that in many of the countries there are enough viewers/fans to support trying to make rugby into an NFL-like game...in many places it's not the number 1 sport.

Doesn't matter - I'll still love watching the Super 14....err, 15. 16? 17? 20? Whatever.

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NiWiTa September 16, 2010 12:07 pm

Fairpoint @roaring20's...game is the game - especially at the regional division 4 level that I play it!

@Jono mate I understand that NH rugby is different in style and some areas of the game need to improve however ramming down the "inferiority" of our NH leagues/competitions repeatedly down our throats just gets boring and ends up reflecting poorly on you....It's like the class bully having to remind people that he is biggest and best....hardly a vote winner in my opinion...

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Juggernauter September 16, 2010 11:11 pm

Come on guys... Super 12, 14, 15, Super Rugby, etc... is a great competition. Just enjoy the rugby. You can't do nothing to change it.

Just go to the games, watch them on TV, and have a beer.

Simply enjoy the sport.

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Juggernauter September 16, 2010 11:12 pm

Come on guys... Super 12, 14, 15, Super Rugby, etc... is a great competition. Just enjoy the rugby. You can't do anything to change it.

Just go to the games, watch them on TV, and have a beer.

Simply enjoy the sport.

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misterrugby September 17, 2010 4:16 pm

Le meilleur championnat du monde ???? MDR. Ce que vous appelez dsormais Super Rugby s'apparente plutt un Supermarch pour club du Top 14. :P

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Anonymous September 18, 2010 1:30 am

can someone explain this to me -- how is Australia so good at union at the international level without a decent grassroots comp like CC or ITM, and with union being a "peripheral sport" as someone has said here?

also: how is union evolving vs. leagule, AFL & soccer since professionalization? Gaining ground, losing ground, stagnant?

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Lil-Chris September 18, 2010 3:57 am

My two cents:

1) NPC and Currie cup rugby simply will not die. People here clearly show there is so much deep adoration for them that, even if only a few thousand or even hundred (small places in the NZ comp I'm referring to here more so)fans turn up, they will still be played.

2) More top class rugby frees spaces for youngsters to develop at club level. If super rugby takes the best players, such is the depth in NZ/SA and even AUS that the quality of players in these competitions will still be very high and giving youngsters a chance is the reason these three nations have dominated rugby.

3) Those of us from the N/H need to understand that, despite the fact we are used to seeing often dull mediocre rugby to packed out stadiums, we can not simply assume that NZ and SA club rugby, of amazing talent and wonderful viewing merit it may be, can pack stadiums like we do up here. New Zealand's entire population could be fit into Greater London, and often these teams we see are small rural areas, that breed such amazing players to there credit, vastly exceeding output of larger sized populations up here.
Small crowds are going to exist in areas that are not heavily populated. Get this into our heads. This said, Super Rugby's notion of sticking games in huge stadiums does not help this.

4) TV- I am guilty of being a too often TV supporter and this is endemic amongst us as people, empty stadiums do not indicate lack of interest, simply some would rather stay home watching the game live or recorded, the more sport on TV the less the crowds swell.
We love being able to catch highlights or coverage of games on TV (why this website would not exist where it not for this). It is a double edged sword sadly, TV will lessen crowd attendance but provide in other ways.

5) Provincial sport does not represent a lot of people. I'm a Northampton Saints fan, if my team were to be made into a "midlands team" we would dominate the Prem but I simply would not feel love for it. I think that the province system is a way of making the best of smaller populations or interest (see Welsh teams failure to attract the crowds their English/French/Irish counterparts-people like towns not areas) but over time this will become more normal.

So basically we need to relax, sadly rugby has had to change due to money's influence, technological advances and changing demographics. We also need to realise that rugby isn't as popular with the masses in many regions, even in nations it varries. It does not (excluding NZ) hold the place as the sport of the masses single handedly, accept these differences and learn to live with them.

SH produce better players-NH has more fans- more fans = more money thus we steal your players, as to entertain our fans meaning more new players are given a chance down south than up here- better player and more chance of playing means the SH continues its dominance.

However more money/exposure in the SH thru super rugby may, just may level things out a bit more.

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Lil-Chris September 18, 2010 4:00 am

My two cents:

NPC and Currie cup rugby simply will not die. People here clearly show there is so much deep adoration for them that, even if only a few thousand or even hundred (small places in the NZ comp I'm referring to here more so)fans turn up, they will still be played.

2) More top class rugby frees spaces for youngsters to develop at club level. If super rugby takes the best players, such is the depth in NZ/SA and even AUS that the quality of players in these competitions will still be very high and giving youngsters a chance is the reason these three nations have dominated rugby.

Those of us from the N/H need to understand that SANZAR nations simply cannot always pack stadiums like we do up here. New Zealand's entire population could be fit into Greater London, and often these teams we see are small rural areas, that breed such amazing players to there credit, vastly exceeding output of larger sized populations up here. Smaller, rural population with TV access available means stadiums will be half empty, regardless of how much better the rugby is.

Provincial sport does not represent a lot of people. I'm a Northampton Saints fan, if my team were to be made into a "midlands team" we would dominate the Prem but I simply would not feel love for it. I think that the province system is a way of making the best of smaller populations or interest (see Welsh teams failure to attract the crowds their English/French/Irish counterparts-people like towns not areas) but over time this will become more normal.

So basically we need to relax, sadly rugby has had to change due to money's influence, technological advances and changing demographics. We also need to realise that rugby isn't as popular with the masses in many regions, even in nations it varries. It does not (excluding NZ) hold the place as the sport of the masses single handedly, accept these differences and learn to live with them.

SH produce better players-NH has more fans- more fans = more money thus we steal your players, as to entertain our fans meaning more new players are given a chance down south than up here- better player and more chance of playing means the SH continues its dominance.

However more money/exposure in the SH thru super rugby may, just may level things out a bit more.

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Lil-Chris September 18, 2010 4:00 am

My two cents:

NPC and Currie cup rugby simply will not die. People here clearly show there is so much deep adoration for them that, even if only a few thousand or even hundred (small places in the NZ comp I'm referring to here more so)fans turn up, they will still be played.

2) More top class rugby frees spaces for youngsters to develop at club level. If super rugby takes the best players, such is the depth in NZ/SA and even AUS that the quality of players in these competitions will still be very high and giving youngsters a chance is the reason these three nations have dominated rugby.

Those of us from the N/H need to understand that SANZAR nations simply cannot always pack stadiums like we do up here. New Zealand's entire population could be fit into Greater London, and often these teams we see are small rural areas, that breed such amazing players to there credit, vastly exceeding output of larger sized populations up here. Smaller, rural population with TV access available means stadiums will be half empty, regardless of how much better the rugby is.

Provincial sport does not represent a lot of people. I'm a Northampton Saints fan, if my team were to be made into a "midlands team" we would dominate the Prem but I simply would not feel love for it. I think that the province system is a way of making the best of smaller populations or interest (see Welsh teams failure to attract the crowds their English/French/Irish counterparts-people like towns not areas) but over time this will become more normal.

So basically we need to relax, sadly rugby has had to change due to money's influence, technological advances and changing demographics. We also need to realise that rugby isn't as popular with the masses in many regions, even in nations it varries. It does not (excluding NZ) hold the place as the sport of the masses single handedly, accept these differences and learn to live with them.

SH produce better players-NH has more fans- more fans = more money thus we steal your players, as to entertain our fans meaning more new players are given a chance down south than up here- better player and more chance of playing means the SH continues its dominance.

However more money/exposure in the SH thru super rugby may, just may level things out a bit more.

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