No prospect of eastern Europe joining in 6 Nations

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Post by LeinsterFan4life on Sat Jan 30, 2016 11:24 am

First topic message reminder :

http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/rugby/rugby-union/international/six-nations-2016-no-prospect-of-eastern-europe-joining-in-best-tournament-a6840196.html#commentsDiv

Way to crush all hope for other nations in Europe. Whats the point in even developing rugby in other European countries?

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat May 14, 2016 12:42 am

What newspaper actually employed you?

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Post by munkian on Sat May 14, 2016 1:00 am

marty2086 wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
marty2086 wrote:

If that's beneficial to those nations why aren't similar tournaments in Europe beneficial to the lower tier European nations?

Now that IS a good point................

over to you Rowanbi..............

I bet Phil would argue himself blue Cardiff otherwise Rolling Eyes

Fixed that for you

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Post by Rowanbi on Sat May 14, 2016 4:43 am

Worth repeating devil

Rowanbi wrote:Could you tell us what this championship is as you seem to have made it up


In that case, I must write for Wiki  laughing

Often informally called the Americas' Six Nations  Doh


[1] The Americas Rugby Championship, often informally called the Americas' Six Nations, will be an annual international rugby competition between six North and South American nations: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, United States and Uruguay.[1]


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Americas_Rugby_Cup

GOTCHA !! RedWine
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Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat May 14, 2016 7:55 am

Yet you still, still avoid.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat May 14, 2016 7:57 am

Wheres your apology? Where are the answers to the simple questions posed to you. I'm assuming the newspaper fired you?

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Post by marty2086 on Tue May 17, 2016 2:24 am

All you ever do is repeat things so why change the habit of a lifetime Rolling Eyes

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Post by Rowanbi on Tue May 17, 2016 10:05 am

I agree. Up your game, 7 1/2! Try contributing something, for a change...
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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue May 17, 2016 6:06 pm

So Quentin, you still can't answer! Whyere's my apology first up, second surely Argentina XV playing in your '6 Nations' is worthless as they aren't playing under the banner of Argentina?

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Post by marty2086 on Tue May 17, 2016 10:39 pm

Read what he posted its there clear as mud to Stevie Wonder Cool

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Post by RuggerRadge2611 on Tue Feb 14, 2017 11:02 pm

After Italy's showing on Saturday I want to bring this up again. However I want to talk about it and focus on a different path.

Forget promotion and relegation.

I want to ask, how can we help Italy improve? I think we are all being extremely naive if we think bringing Georgia in will somehow invigorate Italy or we are being even more daft if we thing Georgia are *that* much better than Italy.

So lets try and fix the 6N, since Italy appear to be swiftly returning to the whipping boys of the tournament. After being spanked at home 2 weeks on the bounce what can be done to improve them.

If Italy aren't improving with 2 teams in the pro 12 and having regular matchups with top tier sides at an international level we must surely now start considering ways to help them improve.

Changing them for Georgia is just changing one poor team for another.

So lets have a constructive discussion about how to raise the quality of the game in Italy.
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Post by Scottrf on Tue Feb 14, 2017 11:12 pm

They haven't played Scotland yet...

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Post by captain carrantuohil on Tue Feb 14, 2017 11:28 pm

Not only that, RR, but no-one will want to swap Rome for Tbilisi in the depths of February.

It's very difficult to give pat answers because at various points, Italy have looked like they were getting to the right standard and we now find ourselves with a situation where they're at their lowest ever ebb in terms of the gap between them and the next best side in the 6N.

On a purely tactical, short-term basis, I do feel that one of their greatest assets is also one of their biggest problems. Parisse has been their talisman for a decade, their one player of true world-class, but everything and I mean everything has in consequence been expected to flow through him. Remember when Italy ought to have beaten France in Paris a year or two back and it was Parisse who was lining himself up to take the match-winning drop at goal? Ridiculous and counter-productive.

I think that the time may have come, especially now that he is no longer quite such a force as a player, to select someone else in his position. I think that Italy might do well to start with building a truly cohesive TEAM culture, a bloody-minded, terrier style of play, as exemplified by people such as Troncon in the past. Parisse has a God-like status in that side that I don't reckon is entirely healthy. Next, they need to unearth another metronomic goal kicker. In the days of Bettarello and Dominguez, Italy were a much harder task for opponents, not least because if you infringed against them, you knew that you would be almost certain to concede three each time. Lately, they've had an assortment of people who couldn't hit the proverbial cow's backside with a banjo and it's killing them.

If this stand-off with the golden boot could also have the footballing nous of Dominguez that would be nice as well. Dominguez rarely had backs of the calibre of Campagnaro and Sarto to call on outside him and I do believe that the talent is there now for the side to be doing much better than they are. However, there are too many generals in the pack, one a supreme Caesar figure, and no-one is being permitted to direct the traffic with their heads up. At the moment, it's a mental thing as much as anything else. The Italian mentality is to mope a bit if things aren't quite going to plan, but they can be lions when roused. Better leadership, more precisely focused, and I've no doubt that you'd see a radical improvement.

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Post by RuggerRadge2611 on Tue Feb 14, 2017 11:37 pm

Scottrf wrote:They haven't played Scotland yet...


Correct.

They have both hosted Ireland at home though, with drastically different fortunes. So please keep your poor attempts at WUMing on a different thread. thumbsup
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Post by robbo277 on Tue Feb 14, 2017 11:39 pm

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:After Italy's showing on Saturday I want to bring this up again. However I want to talk about it and focus on a different path.

Forget promotion and relegation.

I want to ask, how can we help Italy improve? I think we are all being extremely naive if we think bringing Georgia in will somehow invigorate Italy or we are being even more daft if we thing Georgia are *that* much better than Italy.

So lets try and fix the 6N, since Italy appear to be swiftly returning to the whipping boys of the tournament. After being spanked at home 2 weeks on the bounce what can be done to improve them.

If Italy aren't improving with 2 teams in the pro 12 and having regular matchups with top tier sides at an international level we must surely now start considering ways to help them improve.

Changing them for Georgia is just changing one poor team for another.

So lets have a constructive discussion about how to raise the quality of the game in Italy.

The most interesting one for me is the case study on the German football team. Had a rubbish Euro 2000, and then won the World Cup in 2014. Read the full article here (from 2013, so even pre-World Cup win):

https://www.theguardian.com/football/2013/may/23/germany-bust-boom-talent

In short, they overhauled youth football. They discovered and nurtured talent to produce more stars for their national team.

Too many discussions regarding Italy focus on the top-down reorganisation - should Italy play in the Six Nations or the ENC, should the clubs play in the Pro 12, the Super 10 or even the Top 14; but it's shuffling deckchairs on the titanic if you don't have the right quality of players.

My issue with Italy is they should have benefited from being in the Championship for 18 seasons now. That's 45 gates and 18 years of their share of TV deals with no threat of relegation, no threat of lost income. They should have been free to invest their guaranteed annual income in rugby in their country, and they should be reaping results of that. They haven't. Why shouldn't Georgia, who are getting the same results with less resource, be given a chance to see what they can do with this increased resource?

I don't know the state of youth rugby in Italy, but I would say if they want to improve, specific funding for academies and offering free or subsidised coaching courses to coaches would be a very good place to start.

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Post by Hammersmith harrier on Tue Feb 14, 2017 11:44 pm

The German football team is overblown, they were runners up in the 2002 world cup and were consistently in the semi finals of both major tournaments thereafter.

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Post by robbo277 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 12:02 am

Hammersmith harrier wrote:The German football team is overblown, they were runners up in the 2002 world cup and were consistently in the semi finals of both major tournaments thereafter.

The World Cup win was preceded by an upturn in fortune for the Bundesliga clubs, who also benefitted from the DFB's investment.

German clubs started reaching the Champions League final for the first time since the early noughties in 2010, and from then on heavily featured in the latters stages.

In 2007/08, Germany were the fifth ranked association by clubs with a ranking of 48.722. Five years later (which is a complete cycle by UEFA rankings), they were third with 79.614 and have since risen to second, although there ranking has dropped to 76.498 as everyone has suffered from Spain's dominance.

The World Cup was also their first major trophy in 18 years (9 tournaments), which may seem like a very short rate to me as an England fan, but they've historically won 7 of their 30 tournaments, so a strike rate just shy of 1 in 4. 1996 to 2014 was a drought for them, and they fixed that drought by investing in youth.

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Post by Cyril on Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:11 am

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:After Italy's showing on Saturday I want to bring this up again. However I want to talk about it and focus on a different path.

Forget promotion and relegation.

I want to ask, how can we help Italy improve? I think we are all being extremely naive if we think bringing Georgia in will somehow invigorate Italy or we are being even more daft if we thing Georgia are *that* much better than Italy.

So lets try and fix the 6N, since Italy appear to be swiftly returning to the whipping boys of the tournament. After being spanked at home 2 weeks on the bounce what can be done to improve them.

If Italy aren't improving with 2 teams in the pro 12 and having regular matchups with top tier sides at an international level we must surely now start considering ways to help them improve.

Changing them for Georgia is just changing one poor team for another.


So lets have a constructive discussion about how to raise the quality of the game in Italy.
Do Italy have to be replaced by Georgia? Why not just remove Italy and return to a 5 Nations? The standard of the top tier Euro tournament would immediately be improved.

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Post by Scottrf on Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:13 am

Also you'd remove a break and could have 2 sets of 2 games.

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:20 am

There has been plenty of discussions recently about what Italy need to do, it seems to have been they have focused on improving one area at a time and taken their eye off elsewhere which had stagnated or went backwards. From what has been reported it seems there is a more joined approach currently and they are focused on under age groups, the Pro 12 clubs and the national setup and overall coaching.

It will probably take a few years to get them moving closer to parity but I do believe it will come.

While I'd love to see Georgia and some of the other countries step up, financially they would be a drain as Italy is simply a bigger and more valuable media market and everyone should be pushing for them to succeed as the money they could generate for everyone would be boost. Not only from tv but the number of global brands that exist in Italy could add further prestige to the tournament and help grow the game inside and outside Italy.

The likes of Georgia should be pushing to create a second tier to the Pro 12 and bring in promotion and relegation there and then build towards inclusion in the ERCC and then hopefully that will lead to a stronger national team and improved performances against the top teams

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Post by profitius on Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:21 am

The Italians made some changes in the summer but we won't be seeing any fruit from those seeds for a while. The problem for them is the other teams have improved.


Still, those calling for Georgia to be included need to think twice. Georgia is in Asia for starters. They're a poor country, harsh winters so not great for travelling and Italy are better than them as well as having more potential.


Hammersmith harrier wrote:The German football team is overblown, they were runners up in the 2002 world cup and were consistently in the semi finals of both major tournaments thereafter.


I occasionally watch some soccer. One thing stands out from it is the Spanish and German players are light years ahead of the English in terms of technical ability. The English game is based on huff and puff and that's why they'll continue to win nothing.
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Post by robbo277 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:49 am

Everyone suggests a relegation system, but what if instead of treating the European Nations Cup as Division 2, it's treated as an equal? The two winners play-off in the "pre-tour" game in May for the European Championship?

It might not be too meaningful at first, with the 6 Nations Champions likely to field an experimental side, but it will shine a light on the ENC and give the winner a real boost. It will also provide a useful yardstick to see when the 6 Nations Champions feel the need to start to play less experimental line-ups.

The goal here would be to develop two elite competitions in Europe that are on an even footing.

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Post by Scottrf on Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:56 am

Italy vs Ireland the other day was embarrassing enough without it being a cup final. In 16 years Italy aren't competitive, not sure there would be much appetite for pretending the competitions are equal for that period of time.

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:01 am

Scottrf wrote:Italy vs Ireland the other day was embarrassing enough without it being a cup final. In 16 years Italy aren't competitive, not sure there would be much appetite for pretending the competitions are equal for that period of time.

Italy have finished above everyone at some point except for England, that's not pretending they are competitive that is being competitive

Italy have had 6 years of pro teams coupled with the fees they have to pay being a drain on resources, along with uncertainty around the league, their participation on more than one occasion and the fall of Aironi. Its hardly conducive to growth and success

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Post by Scottrf on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:04 am

marty2086 wrote:
Scottrf wrote:Italy vs Ireland the other day was embarrassing enough without it being a cup final. In 16 years Italy aren't competitive, not sure there would be much appetite for pretending the competitions are equal for that period of time.

Italy have finished above everyone at some point except for England, that's not pretending they are competitive that is being competitive
Finishing above single teams at one point over 17 years is being competitive? Different definition to mine.

They have won far less than an average of a game every year. That's not competitive.

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:09 am

Scottrf wrote:
marty2086 wrote:
Scottrf wrote:Italy vs Ireland the other day was embarrassing enough without it being a cup final. In 16 years Italy aren't competitive, not sure there would be much appetite for pretending the competitions are equal for that period of time.

Italy have finished above everyone at some point except for England, that's not pretending they are competitive that is being competitive
Finishing above single teams at one point over 16 years is being competitive? Different definition to mine.

No they finished above Ireland AND France in 2013 along with Wales AND Scotland in 2007

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Post by Scottrf on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:12 am

Two 4th places, only 2 wins behind the winners. Frightening form.

12 wins, 72 losses isn't competitive however you want to present it.

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:13 am

Scottrf wrote:Two 4th places, only 2 wins behind the winners. Frightening form.

12 wins, 72 losses isn't competitive however you want to present it.

Still contrary to your claims isn't it

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Post by robbo277 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:16 am

Scottrf wrote:Italy vs Ireland the other day was embarrassing enough without it being a cup final. In 16 years Italy aren't competitive, not sure there would be much appetite for pretending the competitions are equal for that period of time.

It's the equivalent of the Community Shield in English football. It's not as big as winning the league (Six Nations), but it's a pre-season (pre-tour) blow out and a nice day out in the sun with a trophy at the end. Every other game gets a trophy now, why not this one as well?

That is, until the first time a Six Nations team gets their nose bloodied by a minnow who shows them up. Then you might see the games take on more meaning.


Last edited by robbo277 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:16 am; edited 1 time in total

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Post by captain carrantuohil on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:16 am

Let's not split hairs, Italy in 2016 and 2017 have been less competitive than at any point since they joined the 6N. They're not merely losing, they're shipping ridiculous numbers of points in doing so.

Paradoxically, I do see the signs that they're still well capable of playing at the required level - they can turn it on for a half or so but they should not be taking the sort of second half kicking, notably at home, that has become the norm lately and it strikes me that what is lacking is spirit, rather than ability. The grit and feistiness has vanished, for some reason, and here is where O'Shea has his work cut out for him.

I know that it was in a different galaxy, far away, but it took France an awful long time to become fully competitive when they first joined the old 5 Nations. It isn't easy - arguably the only other European team that I have seen that ever really approached the standard of the 5/6 Nations major players was the Ceausescu-era Romanian team, particularly at home. Very well drilled, they were in some ways more professional than the amateur-led approach of the others in the late 80s. That framework gone, it has been very hard for Romania to rebuild; Italy are still trying to build their own framework to a satisfactory place.

I do believe that Italy will get there with time; it would be wrong to underestimate the extent of the head-start that the rest had built up over them.

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Post by Scottrf on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:23 am

marty2086 wrote:
Scottrf wrote:Two 4th places, only 2 wins behind the winners. Frightening form.

12 wins, 72 losses isn't competitive however you want to present it.

Still contrary to your claims isn't it
I was repeating your claim.

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:24 am

Scottrf wrote:
marty2086 wrote:
Scottrf wrote:Two 4th places, only 2 wins behind the winners. Frightening form.

12 wins, 72 losses isn't competitive however you want to present it.

Still contrary to your claims isn't it
I was repeating your claim.

Noooo this one

Scottrf wrote:Finishing above single teams at one point over 17 years is being competitive? Different definition to mine.

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:26 am

captain carrantuohil wrote:Let's not split hairs, Italy in 2016 and 2017 have been less competitive than at any point since they joined the 6N. They're not merely losing, they're shipping ridiculous numbers of points in doing so.

Paradoxically, I do see the signs that they're still well capable of playing at the required level - they can turn it on for a half or so but they should not be taking the sort of second half kicking, notably at home, that has become the norm lately and it strikes me that what is lacking is spirit, rather than ability. The grit and feistiness has vanished, for some reason, and here is where O'Shea has his work cut out for him.

I know that it was in a different galaxy, far away, but it took France an awful long time to become fully competitive when they first joined the old 5 Nations. It isn't easy - arguably the only other European team that I have seen that ever really approached the standard of the 5/6 Nations major players was the Ceausescu-era Romanian team, particularly at home. Very well drilled, they were in some ways more professional than the amateur-led approach of the others in the late 80s. That framework gone, it has been very hard for Romania to rebuild; Italy are still trying to build their own framework to a satisfactory place.

I do believe that Italy will get there with time; it would be wrong to underestimate the extent of the head-start that the rest had built up over them.

Apparently Brunel undid a lot of things and alienated the players with his approach and methods

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Post by captain carrantuohil on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:38 am

That would explain a lot, marty. Very difficult to account for some of the performances otherwise.

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:42 am

Seem to remember it was Parisse in particular he lost which would back up what everyone is saying about getting rid of him

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Post by SecretFly on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:46 am

How would England fair with only two Club sides in a High End League?  And for virtually the same reason, those two Italian teams are not even close to the highest ranked sides in that League.  Where would England be in the 6N with let's say Sale and Worcester to pick from?

Where would France be if they could only mostly pick personnel from two home club sides?

Not all Nations can have 12 or 14 sides and thousands of players.  Other nations have different priorities, different histories.  Not so long ago at all Scotland were being sneered at and questions were being asked about their continued participation in the Great Six Nations party that some feel they own more than others.
Every year we hear how this 6N is the best International event of all of them.  Even through the decades when it was obviously mostly slopping around in the muck and dumb knock-ons, the 6N organisers and fans still crowed about it being the best - coz of history and tradition if not in terms of rugby quality.

Now, the best International Rugby Event in the World Evah gets down to the nitty gritty, as it does every year, and sneers its weakest link.

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Post by RuggerRadge2611 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 2:55 am

SecretFly wrote:How would England fair with only two Club sides in a High End League?  And for virtually the same reason, those two Italian teams are not even close to the highest ranked sides in that League.  Where would England be in the 6N with let's say Sale and Worcester to pick from?

Where would France be if they could only mostly pick personnel from two home club sides?

Not all Nations can have 12 or 14 sides and thousands of players.  Other nations have different priorities, different histories.  Not so long ago at all Scotland were being sneered at and questions were being asked about their continued participation in the Great Six Nations party that some feel they own more than others.  
Every year we hear how this 6N is the best International event of all of them.  Even through the decades when it was obviously mostly slopping around in the muck and dumb knock-ons, the 6N organisers and fans still crowed about it being the best - coz of history and tradition if not in terms of rugby quality.

Now, the best International Rugby Event in the World Evah gets down to the nitty gritty, as it does every year, and sneers its weakest link.

I'm certainly not sneering at Italy. They like us have been at the bad end of some results in the 6N. However we (Scotland) appear to have finally turned a corner with some great players at the moment and developing some very talented youngsters at the same time. The future looks great for Scotland at the moment. However with Italy I can see no reason for optimism because their pro teams are getting mullered in the pro12 and now their national side is getting prison shamed at home 2 weekends on the bounce.

They are the weakest link, but I'm trying to open up discussions on how best to turn their fortunes around.

For me, BT IMO have been a saving grace for Scottish rugby. Selling the naming rights to Murrayfield for that eye watering figure cleared off the SRU's debts and has allowed the excess to be pumped into the 2 pro teams and grow the grass roots of the Scottish game. We are now starting to see this paying off with Glasgow winning the pro 12 and making the knockout stages of the European cup, Edinburgh steadily improving and the national side improving too.
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Post by LordDowlais on Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:13 am

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:They like us have been at the bad end of some results in the 6N. However we (Scotland) appear to have finally turned a corner with some great players at the moment and developing some very talented youngsters at the same time.

OMG the hypocrisy. How does it feel high up there on your soap box ? Scotland have benefited massively from the grandparent and residency rules. The thing is, that is the last time Italy were anywhere near competitive,was when they were chock a block full of residency and grandparent players.

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:They are the weakest link, but I'm trying to open up discussions on how best to turn their fortunes around.

Again, more of the same. Perhaps Italy need to be doing what Scotland are doing, and getting more dodgy qualified players representing them. The problem for BOTH Scotland and Italy, is what others have said on this thread, you only have two pro teams to pick from.

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:For me, BT IMO have been a saving grace for Scottish rugby. Selling the naming rights to Murrayfield for that eye watering figure cleared off the SRU's debts and has allowed the excess to be pumped into the 2 pro teams and grow the grass roots of the Scottish game. We are now starting to see this paying off with Glasgow winning the pro 12 and making the knockout stages of the European cup, Edinburgh steadily improving and the national side improving too.

Glasgow and Edinburgh are not steadily improving, in fact Glasgow are going backwards, 5th in the league and not as much strength in depth as before, not since losing your Fijians, Edinburgh are languishing in 9th, 1pt ahead of Dragons, and how many time serving players are at Edinburgh ?


Christ, Scotland show some improvement, beat Ireland, and their fans think they can tell others how they should run their ship. Rolling Eyes

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Post by captain carrantuohil on Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:31 am

The sad thing is that the Italian press, previously pretty supportive of their national rugby team, have joined in the chorus of gloom after the latest embarrassment. One of the Italian papers went so far as to suggest that Italy no longer merited a place in the 6N.

This is very worrying. The national team must command the respect, affection and support of those in the best position to help them. For rugby to be part of the Italian sporting fabric, everyone has to be on board, especially the media, not merely the diehards from Rome and the Veneto. It's a critical time and in my opinion, Italy needs the backing of the entire rugby community, rather than the knee-jerk reaction that they no longer have a place at the top table in it.

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Post by RuggerRadge2611 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:51 am

Carlsberg don't do dobbers but Merthyr Tydfil clearly does. So here lets counter your points in turn and correct you as appropriate.

LordDowlais wrote:
OMG the hypocrisy. How does it feel high up there on your soap box ? Scotland have benefited massively from the grandparent and residency rules. The thing is, that is the last time Italy were anywhere near competitive,was when they were chock a block full of residency and grandparent players.

Scotlands 1st choice XXIII (give or take) and their birth places (this team is my preferred team injury free)

1. Ali Dickinson (Dundee Scotland)
2. Fraser Brown (Edinburgh Scotland)
3. WP Nel (Loeriesfontein, South Africa) Project player OK
4. J Gray (Rutherglen Scotland)
5. R Gray (Rutherglen Scotland)
6. J Barclay (Hong Kong, China) 2 Scottish parents
7. Hamish Watson (Manchester, England) 2 Scottish Parents
8. Ryan Wilson (Aldershot, England) 2 Scottish Parents
9. Greig Laidlaw (Borders boy through and through, nephew of Roy Laidlaw birthplace unknown or not on Wikipedia)
10. Finn Russel (Stirling, Scotland)
11. T Seymour (Nashville, Tennessee, United States) Scottish Mother
12. A Dunbar (Dumfries, Scotland)
13. M Bennett (Irvine, Scotland)
14. S Maitland (Tokoroa, New Zealand) Scottish Grand parents, Maitland said "My granddad always reminded me that I was part Scottish and that I should never forget that."
15, S Hogg (Melrose, Scotland)

16. R Ford (Kelso, Scotland)
17. G Reid (Irvine, Scotland)
18. J Welsh (Glasgow, Scotland)
19. T. Swinson (London England) Project player OK
20. J Strauss (Bellville, South Africa) Project player OK
21. A Price (Kings Lynn, England) Scottish Parents
22. D Weir (Rutherglen Scotland)
23. M Scott ( Dunfermline, Scotland)

So 3 project players... Scotland have benefited massively from the grandparent and residency rules, I have identified 5 of our 1st XV that have qualified in this way, hardly seismic. I also fail to see where I'm being hypocritical.

LordDowlais wrote: Again, more of the same. Perhaps Italy need to be doing what Scotland are doing, and getting more dodgy qualified players representing them. The problem for BOTH Scotland and Italy, is what others have said on this thread, you only have two pro teams to pick from.

Scotland actually exports a lot of their talented guys. Richie Gray (Tolouse) Laidlaw (Glaws and soon Clermont Auvergne) Matt Scott (Glaws) Maitland (Sarries) Barclay (Scarlets) this frees up room to develop talent within the pro setups at Glasgow and Edinburgh. Perhaps Italy need to start exporting some of their talent to bring through young guys into the pro teams?

LordDowlais wrote:Glasgow and Edinburgh are not steadily improving, in fact Glasgow are going backwards, 5th in the league and not as much strength in depth as before, not since losing your Fijians, Edinburgh are languishing in 9th, 1pt ahead of Dragons, and how many time serving players are at Edinburgh ?

Going backwards but still qualifying for the knockout stages of the ERC for the first time. Headscratch Curently 5th in the pro 12 but if you don't think they'll be in the pro 12 play off mix at the end of the season I don't think you watch much rugby. Edinburgh are in a state of flux with a temporary coach but have just signed Mark Bennett from Glasgow. I think they'll be much improved with that signing next year as they look to settle at a more suitable ground (Myreside). They have also qualified for the next stage of the European Knockouts of the ECC, a tournament the dragons failed to qualify out of the group stages in.

LordDowlais wrote:Christ, Scotland show some improvement, beat Ireland, and their fans think they can tell others how they should run their ship. Rolling Eyes

I don't think I should be telling anybody how to do anything, rugby is my hobby, not my job. I'm an armchair fan like you posting on an internet forum, I think this is worth remembering. The fact that YOU think I can tell others (Italian fans or rugby posters, who by the way swamp these boards on a regular basis) on how they should run their "ship" is by far one of the most ridiculous comments I've ever seen on these boards and I have seen some howlers. Even if Italian fans posted here, why would they:

A. Listen to me
B. Assume I carry the authority of the SRU and am capable of telling them on how to run "their ship"
C. Take my advice to the FIR

Answers on a postcard. Thanks for derailing what was a good discussion though LD. Well done thumbsup

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Post by robbo277 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:09 am

SecretFly wrote:How would England fair with only two Club sides in a High End League?  And for virtually the same reason, those two Italian teams are not even close to the highest ranked sides in that League.  Where would England be in the 6N with let's say Sale and Worcester to pick from?

One doesn't cause the other. England have too much talent to be condensed to two domestic clubs sides, whereas Italy barely have enough talent to stretch across their two. It's the same lack of players that causes them to barely be able to put out two competitive top level sides that means their International team is pants as well.

To rectify this, they need to invest in rugby in their own country. Nations peak and trough on their own cycles, but Italy just don't produce enough quality rugby players, even at their peak, to challenge the top of the tournament.

LordDowlais wrote:Again, more of the same. Perhaps Italy need to be doing what Scotland are doing, and getting more dodgy qualified players representing them. The problem for BOTH Scotland and Italy, is what others have said on this thread, you only have two pro teams to pick from.

Again, I disagree with this point. It's not that Scotland or Italy only have two teams, they only have enough players for two teams. Yes, they both produce a few extra who play in other leagues, but to consistently compete at the top they both need to produce more quality players which would eventually force the creation of a third team to get them all game time. Otherwise they'll fill it with average players and dilute the quality of the competition they play in.

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Post by LordDowlais on Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:11 am

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:So 3 project players... Scotland have benefited massively from the grandparent and residency rules, I have identified 5 of our 1st XV that have qualified in this way, hardly seismic. I also fail to see where I'm being hypocritical.

I think somebody needs to to a bit better when trying to prove people wrong:-

A Allan Eng Grandfarther
S Berghan NZ Grandfarther
A Dell SA Grandmother
T Swinson Eng Grandmother
B Toolis Aus Mother
J Barclay HK Parents
J Hardie NZ Grandmother
R Harley Eng Parents
H Watson Eng Grandparents
C Du Preez SA Residency
J Strauss SA Residency
R Wilson Eng Grandfather
A Price Eng Mother
H Pyrgos Eng Mother
D Taylor Eng Parents
S Maitland NZ Grandparents
T Seymour USA Mother
T Visser Hol Residency

That's 8 qualified through grandparents, and three on residency in the squad. Not your preferred choice.

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:Scotland actually exports a lot of their talented guys. Richie Gray (Tolouse) Laidlaw (Glaws and soon Clermont Auvergne) Matt Scott (Glaws) Maitland (Sarries) Barclay (Scarlets) this frees up room to develop talent within the pro setups at Glasgow and Edinburgh. Perhaps Italy need to start exporting some of their talent to bring through young guys into the pro teams?

That is because the Scottish teams struggle to hold onto their best players, which was a problem when it was happening to the Welsh regions, now all of a sudden it's a good thing. It's the reason why the strength in depth is not there with the two Scottish teams, come international time you struggle, you cannot even keep hold of you better NSQ players like Matawalu and Nakarawa.

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:Going backwards but still qualifying for the knockout stages of the ERC for the first time. Headscratch Curently 5th in the pro 12 but if you don't think they'll be in the pro 12 play off mix at the end of the season I don't think you watch much rugby. Edinburgh are in a state of flux with a temporary coach but have just signed Mark Bennett from Glasgow. I think they'll be much improved with that signing next year as they look to settle at a more suitable ground (Myreside). They have also qualified for the next stage of the European Knockouts of the ECC, a tournament the dragons failed to qualify out of the group stages in.

Check your results when you are depleted during international time, in recent memory games at Scotstoun against Ospreys and Scarlets have shown you struggle against teams just as depleted with call ups.

RuggerRadge2611 wrote:Answers on a postcard. Thanks for derailing what was a good discussion though LD. Well done thumbsup

So just because I point out some hypocritical stuff in your posts I am de-railing the thread. Jesus wept. I think the 6N would be a lot poorer without the Italians, yes they do need to up their game, yet I do not think that basing their revival on Scotlands recent good fortunes is the best way for them. In fact, I think Scotland are papering over the cracks, as proven by the amount of players picked for Scotland with a dodgy heritage. Also, by the fact that the two pro sides are not pulling up any trees, you could seriously be in a position without a side in the top 4 come the end of the season.

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Post by LordDowlais on Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:15 am

robbo277 wrote:Again, I disagree with this point. It's not that Scotland or Italy only have two teams, they only have enough players for two teams. Yes, they both produce a few extra who play in other leagues, but to consistently compete at the top they both need to produce more quality players which would eventually force the creation of a third team to get them all game time. Otherwise they'll fill it with average players and dilute the quality of the competition they play in.

Yes I know. I agree with this, and that is why I said it was a problem for both nations, only haveing two sides. OK

It is not beyond the realms of possibility for Scotland to be in the same boat as Italy in the future.

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Post by international198 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:50 am

I think Georgia needs to play Tier 1 Nations in friendlies more often, such as in the autumn and in the summer tours. However, who would want to play Georgia? Bringing back Wales A would be a good idea because they could play Georgia on a more regular basis. The main team wants to play New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina and Australia. They don't have time for Georgia.

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Post by international198 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:51 am

However, how can you do Wales A? It would drain the regions of their players.

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Post by international198 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:54 am

It would be nice if ITV could televise Georgia's matches. However people would complain there is too much rugby on the television I'm guessing!

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Post by marty2086 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:43 am

international198 wrote:It would be nice if ITV could televise Georgia's matches. However people would complain there is too much rugby on the television I'm guessing!

Or maybe its because not many would watch it

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Post by propdavid_london on Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:25 am

More talk on this front -
http://www.talkingrugbyunion.co.uk/ranked-above-italy-georgia-chasing-a-place-in-six-nations/17483.htm

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Post by Gooseberry on Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:27 am

More talk ...still wont happen

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Post by RuggerRadge2611 on Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:33 am

propdavid_london wrote:More talk on this front -
http://www.talkingrugbyunion.co.uk/ranked-above-italy-georgia-chasing-a-place-in-six-nations/17483.htm

Hmmmmm, alarm bells are ringing. This for me is a typical Oligarch comment :

"We'd like to invite John Feehan, the CEO, or any of the Six Nations committee to Georgia," head coach Milton Haig told Sportsmail.

"None of us have ever spoken to him. Is it about adding value on the rugby field or adding financial value? We can do both.

"Tell us what the cost is. If it's €10 million a year, tell us. At least then we can say, 'we're in, here's €10m' or 'we're out'. I'm pretty sure we'd find that figure."

Throw money at the problem. I don't want Georgia in the 6N just because they have more money to throw at the 6N chairman than Italy. I'd want them in because they deserve in on sporting merit. We can't bring Georgia in unless we abandon the development of Italy, unless we make it the 7 Nations. Promotion and Relegation is too harsh IMO and expanding the tournament is preferable than chucking Italy or anyone else for that matter out for a bad season.

I feel that European Rugby has let Italy down, by not helping their development as much as we probably could. Untill they improve we'd just be trading one whipping team for another. As little as 2 seasons ago I would also include Scotland in that whipping team category too.
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Post by propdavid_london on Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:35 am

It perhaps should though.
As I recall, Italy was admitted to the 6N after they had beaten a number of the original 5 members. Same with Argentina being admitted to the then Tri-Nations off the back of a number of exceptionally good WC showings.

Give Georgia a couple of tests against tier 1 nations each season for the next 3yrs (mainly 6N sides) and if they are competitive then there is an argument for inclusion.

Although 7 Nations doesn't have the same ring to it! I do think there should be a relegation and promotion system with the next tier European competition.

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