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Pro12 Value - The Facts (continued)

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madmaccas
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Post by George Carlin Wed 22 Apr 2015, 11:38 am

First topic message reminder :

A continuation of Chunky Norwich's original thread:
https://www.606v2.com/t58514-pro12-value-the-facts
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Post by Guest Wed 22 Apr 2015, 8:36 pm

Welshmushroom wrote:I think the Pro12 is actually a top product.  Some of the games on Sky this year have been absolute screamers.  I love the diversity of the league.  The Italians have added to it as well and I quite look forward to seeing players I know little about in action within the league.  

League contributes to a substantial amount of 6 nations representation & lions squads.  Now if the irish, welsh, Scottish & Italians could get together and get some kind of blood hound like McCafferty involved to exploit that fact we would be rolling in cash Smile

Seriously though - I've really enjoyed the rugby and diversity our league has to offer.  Its developing every year.  Great destinations for fans as well given the locations of the teams.  Plenty of holiday options there as well.  

Great post clap

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Post by ME-109 Wed 22 Apr 2015, 8:38 pm

Thats fair enough Griff but in relative terms its not that far from where Ireland was. Demand for international rugby was always high. The club game started to grow when the All Ireland League was introduced circa 1990. The Provinces would be lucky to get one man and his hamster (not to mind a dog) at the interpro games up to the mid nineties when the professional game fell on us. Since then it has grown around the provinces to the detriment of the clubs and the club game. The exception for the provinces being the odd game against a touring side back in the day.

Again in relative terms this is in a country where Rugby is at best the fourth sport in terms of participation/interest...not really sure of the actual figures and where Soccer fans fill ryanair flights or ferries every weekend to go see "their" clubs in England.

So it is possible to grow interest. We were lucky that there was the provincial set up based around major cities (the exception being Limerick but thats another story). You would think with Swansea, Cardiff and Newport currently being the centres it would be something similar in Wales.

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Post by SecretFly Wed 22 Apr 2015, 9:25 pm

Three pages down already on the new incarnation of this?

Well whatever else the Pro12 is, it certainly gets more talk thrown its way than the other two Wink

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Post by Pot Hale Wed 22 Apr 2015, 9:42 pm

SecretFly wrote:Three pages down already on the new incarnation of this?

Well whatever else the Pro12 is, it certainly gets more talk thrown its way than the other two Wink

You mean you haven't been on the Top 14 thread yet, Fly?  

Jeez - absolute meltdown, pure volcanic lava on there.....

Trying to work out what to do with that fullah Carter when he gets there - should he play 10 or just be on standby for the publicity office.  

Arguing about whether they'll do a 500,000 or 750,000 order run on the replica shirts, fake Nonu wigs, comic-style match programmes, etc, etc.  

Wondering if foie-gras at half-time for the players might annoy the props eating regime

Some of them are thinking that if they sent the waterboys over for next year's Challenge Cup, would anybody notice the difference.....

that kinda thing.... pure murder.
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Post by Rory_Gallagher Wed 22 Apr 2015, 9:47 pm

There is a rather sensible debate going on here, and then a moronic one in the background led by none other than Lord Dowlais. Shocker. Laugh

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Post by Pot Hale Wed 22 Apr 2015, 9:56 pm

Extract from a wire report on ARU's decision to allow 60-capped Australian players be picked for Wallabies.

"Former Wales captain Dai Young has urged England to stick with their policy of only selecting home-based players for international matches, saying Wales’ decision to pick stars at overseas clubs had “wrecked” regional rugby in his homeland.

Young’s comments came after the Australian Rugby Union announced on Wednesday it was relaxing its eligibility rules.

Previously, overseas-based players were barred from Wallaby selection but with the Australian game facing a mass exodus of stars such as Adam Ashley-Cooper, former skipper James Horwill, Will Genia and Sekope Kepu following this year’s World Cup in England, the ARU has softened its stance.

The ARU said the rules would be relaxed for players who have pulled on a Wallaby jersey more than 60 times and held a professional contract with Australian rugby for at least seven years.

England currently has a policy of selecting only players with one of the country’s 12 Premiership clubs, save in “exceptional circumstances” only.

With the World Cup starting in September, there has been a debate about whether England should recall flanker Steffon Armitage, the current European player of the year, who is with French-based Toulon, where he plays with the one-time highest-paid Wallaby and reigning France player of the year Matt Giteau.

Young cited events in Wales, where attendances for regional or senior club rugby have nosedived in recent years, while key players such as Leigh Halfpenny and Jamie Roberts have taken up lucrative contracts, as proof of what can happen when players are allowed to go abroad without it damaging their Test prospects.

“You see falling crowds (in Wales), everybody wants to see their top stars. The games aren’t as attractive with your top stars not playing,” said former hooker Young, capped 51 times by Wales.

“You lose control over your players as well, as in their fitness, their condition and their welfare and so on. To me England’s stance is absolutely right and they should stick to it, otherwise you will see the quality of the Premiership dwindle. I’ve seen it from Wales, and it’s done much more harm than good allowing players to go. I certainly think England’s stance is by far the best.”
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Post by The Saint Wed 22 Apr 2015, 10:02 pm

Irish Londoner wrote:
Club membership/supporter base - Wales has a lot more clubs than Ireland and a much larger proportion of the population are intersted in rugby outside of the internationals.

Outside of New Zealand, Wales is (possibly was these days) the only country in the world where rugby is the number one sport, where every hamlet, village and town has at least one rugby club, and where nearly all the population have at least a passing interest in rugby 52 weeks of the year.

So what's Ireland's advantage again ?

I'm sorry but these last points are simply wrong. Not that I think it gives Ireland a big advantage/Wales a big disadvantage, but guess-work like this p*sses people off. We have only have more clubs* and players than Scotland and Italy in the 6 Nations. You slag off Chunky, but he brings facts to the fore and bases his argument around them instead of guessing things. Surely an eye-opener with regards to rugby outside of the international arena is to first open your eyes and see how many attend live matches compared to provincial rugby. Also how do you define the 'number one sport'? If you mean most popular then I'm not sure... Have you heard of football? (Might be called soccer in Ireland). If you mean our national sport, well yeah I think it is. But how does that give us an advantage?

*local rugby clubs, you could be right. There are many all across the south - literally within 800 yards of each other in some valleys. Guys like to hit sh*t out of each other on the weekend, but these are mostly pub teams. I think players are best produced through schools rugby (like in Ireland).

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Post by The Saint Wed 22 Apr 2015, 10:05 pm

ME-109 wrote:

Again in relative terms this is in a country where Rugby is at best the fourth sport in terms of participation/interest...not really sure of the actual figures and where Soccer fans fill ryanair flights or ferries every weekend to go see "their" clubs in England.

This gets banded about often. Hurling doesn't count Wink. However I do think it's good that the Irish love sport and can do well in multiple sports. Plus you can nick decent back 3 players from GAE.

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Post by ME-109 Wed 22 Apr 2015, 10:21 pm

The Saint wrote:
ME-109 wrote:

Again in relative terms this is in a country where Rugby is at best the fourth sport in terms of participation/interest...not really sure of the actual figures and where Soccer fans fill ryanair flights or ferries every weekend to go see "their" clubs in England.

This gets banded about often. Hurling doesn't count Wink. However I do think it's good that the Irish love sport and can do well in multiple sports. Plus you can nick decent back 3 players from GAE.

Hurling doesn't count ...

From now on until September its the only thing that matters..

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Post by The Saint Wed 22 Apr 2015, 10:32 pm

ME-109 wrote:
The Saint wrote:
ME-109 wrote:

Again in relative terms this is in a country where Rugby is at best the fourth sport in terms of participation/interest...not really sure of the actual figures and where Soccer fans fill ryanair flights or ferries every weekend to go see "their" clubs in England.

This gets banded about often. Hurling doesn't count Wink. However I do think it's good that the Irish love sport and can do well in multiple sports. Plus you can nick decent back 3 players from GAE.

Hurling doesn't count ...

From now on until September its the only thing that matters..

As a genuine contender to rugby, no. It's like me saying us lot dressing up in funny clothes, singing and dancing at every eisteddfod is more popular than rugby Laugh.

Is Hurling, with regards to how its played, at all like lacrosse?

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Post by ME-109 Wed 22 Apr 2015, 10:51 pm

The Saint wrote:
ME-109 wrote:
The Saint wrote:
ME-109 wrote:

Again in relative terms this is in a country where Rugby is at best the fourth sport in terms of participation/interest...not really sure of the actual figures and where Soccer fans fill ryanair flights or ferries every weekend to go see "their" clubs in England.

This gets banded about often. Hurling doesn't count Wink. However I do think it's good that the Irish love sport and can do well in multiple sports. Plus you can nick decent back 3 players from GAE.

Hurling doesn't count ...

From now on until September its the only thing that matters..

As a genuine contender to rugby, no. It's like me saying us lot dressing up in funny clothes, singing and dancing at every eisteddfod is more popular than rugby Laugh.

Is Hurling, with regards to how its played, at all like lacrosse?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8i3-Qk7FNeQ

Lacrosse....wtf is that...something to do with nets

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Post by The Great Aukster Wed 22 Apr 2015, 11:11 pm

Griff wrote:
The Great Aukster wrote:
Griff wrote:But we all do it, LD.  Even the lowly Dragons rest and rotate their 'stars'.  There is nothing wrong with it.  It is needed.  But we have to change the perception that it alters the TV product.  England still manage to market their league well for the TV companies, even though they rest and rotate.  We have to convince the TV people that the same applies here, otherwise we won't get better deals in future.

I agree Griff.

There is no evidence produced by anyone so far that resting players has any effect on the level of sponsorship or amount of TV money forthcoming.

OTOH ScarletsSpiderman and others provided evidence in the previous thread that the Welsh teams in the LV get bigger gates than in the Pro12 and that's with no big name players on either side. That competition also got sponsorship unlike the dead duck Challenge Cup despite most teams taking it seriously and fielding very strong if not first choice sides.

Neither the gate nor the TV viewing figures were affected by the
IRFU resting players in the Munster v Leinster game.

Guys like Mark Orders doesn't care about evidence, it is only perception he is interested in. On that front there can be no doubt that constantly sniping at the Pro12 publicly (however unfounded) will hurt it's brand image. It's called cutting off your nose to spite your face.

See bold above.  Definitely agree, but who snipes at the Pro12 publicly?  On here?  In the media?  The only media sniping I've heard recently is from Dawson saying the welsh and Scottish need to pull their socks up!  But that is not really sniping.  Who has been sniping publicly?

I was specifically referring to the Mark Orders piece referenced above. It is a whinging finger pointing exercise (along the lines of this thread at times) where the divisions are exaggerated along national lines with no positive balance or solutions proposed. I would include what Mick Dawson said as sniping and how it was reported. Dawson pointed the finger at the Welsh and Scottish so how he thinks that does the Pro12 any favours is beyond me. He above anyone should know that his own province's PR success is not proportional to the number of big names coming out of the tunnel every week.
Equally the piece by Dai Young about Test selection is not based on any evidence. Apparently Leigh Halfpenny leaving last year caused attendances all across Wales to nosedive - really? Funny in a similar timeframe that Sexton's departure didn't have the same effect in Ireland. It's fine that they have their opinions but it is just so much hot air without anything to back it up. It could be argued that perpetuating this delusion is actually harming the perception of the League and doing it far more PR damage than anything else.

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Post by Pot Hale Thu 23 Apr 2015, 1:36 am

Pertinent extract from Irish Times article - 23 April 2015 on Irish Provinces viewpoint and player management programme:

While Joe Schmidt’s team is thriving, the task of winning Europe’s premier club competition has become an increasingly formidable one for the provinces since the IRFU tightened its policy on the recruitment of foreigners to encourage the development of homegrown players.
JJ Hanrahan is one who has got away to Northampton this summer but it’s not necessarily a bad move so long as, like Tommy Bowe before him, he’s lured back to these shores for the prime years of a career that promises so much.
But Bowe fitted into that rarest category in Irish rugby, alongside Johnny Sexton and before him only Keith Wood, in that he commanded an Ireland jersey despite moving abroad to play for the Ospreys from 2008 until 2012. He admits now it took a heavy physical toll.
“When I was at the Ospreys, certainly the first two years, I played a huge amount,” said Bowe. “I was 24, 25 going on 26 and I just had small niggles; I was able to play week on week but really, after two years, I felt my body starting to break down a bit from 30 plus games.
“In the first three years I had almost 80 caps and the final year I only got up to 96, so I think I played a lot of rugby.
“Listen, I loved every minute of it . . . but since I have come back to Ireland, the player management system has suited me amazingly. The way they look after players, like that break between the Six Nations, has benefited me massively. It’s what keeps players in Ireland.”
Bowe has played 13 Ulster games this season, five in Europe, running in seven tries. He’s also re-established himself on Ireland’s right wing, playing seven Test matches. The magic number for Ireland’s elite players in this pre-World Cup season appears to be 25 games.
Flogged “I could have gone off to France [
after the Ospreys] but I knew my body was starting to fatigue and that I would have been flogged, just sent out to play,” Bowe continued.
“[Ireland] has looked after me really well and allowed me get my body back up to where it is now.”
Ulster and Bowe are seeking to replace Leinster as the alpha province but they are equally forewarned by the price of this success, with third-choice Leinster players struggling to deliver in some must-win Pro12 matches.
“It hasn’t affected us as much as Leinster,” said Bowe of the central player management scheme. “Probably our best period this year was during the Six Nations when we had a couple of super wins. The extended squad was able to get us bonus-point wins and some key victories that have put us from fourth or fifth in the league up to second or third.”
Basically how Leinster have done it until the present campaign.
There’s a healthy debate behind the scenes as the IRFU high performance director David Nucifora endeavours to appease increasingly irate provincial coaches – who live and die by their results – while ensuring the golden goose (the national team) gets the ideal environment to prosper.
It all means that Ulster have a great opportunity on Friday to capitalise on Leinster’s mid-season disarray; to bury them and avenge so many recent meetings.
“Since I’ve come back [winning silverware] is what we’ve talked about. Ulster were in a Heineken Cup final before I came back. We have been knocking on the door for a long, long time. Unfortunately, it has been Leinster who have been the one’s that have knocked us out every time.
“The likes of Rory Best, who has been with Ulster for such a long time, he just wants . . . I mean it is 2006 since we last won the league. For us to be taken seriously, we’ve got the facilities, we’ve got super coaching and another great coach coming in [Les Kiss] and another big signing [Charles Piutau] in over a year’s time, but at the end of the day trophies and winning things are what a team is graded on."

Sounds like the Pro 12 matters to Ulster now.
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Post by Guest Thu 23 Apr 2015, 1:36 am

LordDowlais wrote:
Sin é wrote:You keep rubishing the league

Ok, this is getting boring now, can you please show me where I have rubbished the league ?

All I have said on this whole debate is that WE ARE ALL TO BLAME for the leagues failings when it comes to getting more money from the media, all of us, Welsh, Irish, Scott's, Italians, it is down to all of us, but the Irish on here WILL NOT EXCEPT any responsibility for their part, they will only point out what us Welsh have done wrong, and accuse us of wanting to jump into bed with the English, and that is the most hypocritical thing I have ever heard on here, they accuse us of wanting to jump into bed with the English, yet they prioritise the scraps from the table that they throw them in Europe like a scolded dog, and roll out the red carpet for the competition that they control. they are doing what they are accusing us of doing, by prioritising Europe over the league.

WILL NOT ACCEPT OK

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Post by Pot Hale Thu 23 Apr 2015, 2:00 am

The Great Aukster wrote:

Equally the piece by Dai Young about Test selection is not based on any evidence. Apparently Leigh Halfpenny leaving last year caused attendances all across Wales to nosedive - really? Funny in a similar timeframe that Sexton's departure didn't have the same effect in Ireland. It's fine that they have their opinions but it is just so much hot air without anything to back it up. It could be argued that perpetuating this delusion is actually harming the perception of the League and doing it far more PR damage than anything else.

I think if you re-read the AAP wire report that I posted earlier, there are certain quotes attributed to Dai Young, and other statements are commentary written by the author of the article.   Dai Young's comment is that Welsh players being allowed to leave Welsh rugby and have no consequences for their test selection is a bad policy.  

He also states that the regions should have their top players playing in the league - that's what keeps the crowds coming in.   "“You see falling crowds (in Wales), everybody wants to see their top stars. The games aren’t as attractive with your top stars not playing,”

The article cites two players - Halfpenny and Roberts - who have left recently as an example of players continuing to be picked for tests even though playing abroad.  Neither Dai Young nor the journalist claims that the departure of Halfpenny on its own caused attendances to nosedive all across Wales.  The point/argument being made is rather the overall outflow of Welsh players to other leagues has contributed to falling attendances at Welsh grounds.  And it has other consequences regarding control of player, fitness regimes, etc.

I don't know if there is any evidence-based correlation to be made between departure of a cohort of high-profile, top quality players from Wales and attendances at club games, but it sure as shiite hasn't helped the chances of greater success for Welsh regions playing in the league or in European competitions.  And you could make an argument that it has created disaffected fans.  It links to the point Dawson and others have made that Welsh rugby needs to get its top stars back.  I don't think that's whinging or finger pointing - that's pragmatic rugby business sense.  If Ireland, Wales, Scotland and Italy could have all of their top players playing for their clubs in the Pro12, this would increase the quality of the league, and inter alia, its attraction to supporters, punters, and Tv fans.   That's not an unreasonable assumption to make in seeking to improve the brand, business profile and value of a league.  

Look at the efforts that IRFU made to ensure that Heaslip, O'Brien, Murray, O'Connell, Healy, etc didn't up sticks to France.  And the efforts they've made to bring Sexton back from France - primarily for the benefit of the national side, I would argue.

The top Irish players may only play 8-10 Pro12 games every season, but if some of them are also likely to be playing 7-10 internationals and hoping to play 6-9 European games, then that's likely to be the limit given the relatively small pool of players it has available compared to the likes of England or France.   And if one looked a bit more closely at the playing times of the top players across the other Pro12 clubs, the situation would not be too dissimilar.  However, at least all the Irish top stars are based in Ireland and can actually play in the league.
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Post by Guest Thu 23 Apr 2015, 8:50 am

That's a great post, Pot Hale. I agree with all of that. It's not like the clubs wanted to lose their stars players. However, under our current/previous model and relationship with the WRU the clubs were in a tricky position - try to compete with the offer made by France (e.g. I'm guessing a bit, but say 500,000 euros for Jamie Roberts) and then have a player that may only play a few games (Roberts is a bit of an injured soul, bless him. I think he played only twice for the Blues a few years back, but something like 8 times for Wales in he same season), or do they put that 500,000 to better use. So it's a toss up between Jamie Roberts' 8 games or perhaps 2 players like Xavier Rush and Ben Blair who play all season (both great Blues signings). Now previously I think option 2 would have been better for business. However, we've made progress now. We're getting our house in order. We've got DCs in place - I believe we're up to 12 now, and a few more on the way - so it's a much better proposition for the club owners (remember they funded all of the players wages previously) to retrain the Welsh players. It's what we've been crying out for for years. Let's hope it's successful.

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Post by The Great Aukster Thu 23 Apr 2015, 9:22 am

I agree with most of that Pot Hale. I understand that Young is primarily talking about Test selection but his assertion is that the standard of rugby has gone down in Wales because the best players have left. That is nothing to do with Ireland or player rotation, and implies that the League needs to get these players back to improve the League. There is nothing wrong with that per say, other than it publicly airs the notion the the League isn't good and associates it with some very negative words. Since the value of anything is based on public opinion, Dawson and Young's comments detract from the League value.

However there is a subtle difference in what is being said by Dawson and Young and the likes of the journos like Mark Orders reporting it. What they are saying is not that having big name players appearing simply makes the League better, but rather improving the quality of rugby makes the league more attractive. The quality of rugby is a function not exclusively restricted to the ability of the players, but is also dependent on whether they are fit, well-coached, motivated, have competition for places etc. etc. Once the public start seeing the quality of rugby on show, and every team striving to improve that, then the product becomes much more valuable.

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 23 Apr 2015, 10:13 am

Ok, I have been very busy this morning and only now have I had the chance to come on here, I apologise in advance if I do not reply to anybody promptly but I have a busy schedule this morning. Ok here goes.

Firstly, we all have to take responsibility for how our league is viewed by outsiders because of the way we have ALL behaved since the leagues inception.

Lets look at how I see we have all behaved. Wales, here in Wales we have not helped the league over the years because of our in fighting, letting players leave, and wanting to jump into bed with the English, as a Welshman I recognise these failings and I will admit that what we have done is damaging to the league.

Scotland, for my liking Scotland over the years have not helped the league because they have allowed their teams to padded out with substandard unknown SH players that bring nothing to our league.

Italy, well, we know about them, they are constantly the bottom two sides and they do not seem to be getting any better, they are not helping the league by constantly being rubbish, they really need to up their game.

Ireland, they have not helped the league since it's inception, because they have used the league as a development tool in the past, and they have always prioritised the European competition over the league, also, they rest their star players for long periods and do not put them on show in our league which does not make it as attractive as it could be to the TV companies and other sponsors.

There this is how I view it, I understand things are now changing, especially with how we qualify for Europe, but the damage has been done to our league already, and we need to repair that damage that we all have done, thankfully, here in Wales we seem to be getting our house in order, and we are trying to make what we have work. Now unless we can all accept our parts in the leagues failings to get better media and sponsorship deals, then we will keep going around in circles, we should be debating on how we can make our league better, not denying any fault and blaming others.

I am now going to do some work, no doubt I will be pulled apart over what I have just said though.

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Post by SecretFly Thu 23 Apr 2015, 10:39 am

I do hope this Drama a Day activity throughout Rugby Union is just a symptom of a World Cup approaching, with journalists testing out their ink spurts of intrigue and rugby organisations just all excited, and animating that excitement by constantly now changing or looking for change and wanting it all done yesterday.

It really has become a drain now.

Change Europe.
Change Scrum Rules (again!)
Change breakdown rules
Change Refs coz we don't like the lad we always seem to get ( okay so that's a personal little jibe thrown in slyly Whistle Wink )
Change the Cap
Change Promotion/Relegation
Change the way England choose players to let Lord Armitage in!!!!!!!!!  (that's a personal one from Quins Wink )
Change the way Australia chooses Internationals
Change the venues
Change the dates (didn't the French want the ERCC final changed to the present date and, now that two French sides are in that final, have written a note to say their fans won't be attending?)

Oh sorry, .. continue: change the 6N format
Change the commenators
Change the pundits
Change the Pro12
Change the excuses
Change the record......

I'm hoping it'll all calm down After the WC because if that's the considered "Legacy" (constant yelps of 'Change' ever few weeks) then I'm just going to start watching Rugby League exclusively to get a head start on where Union obviously wants to go.

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Post by the-goon Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:24 pm

LordDowlais wrote:Ok, I have been very busy this morning and only now have I had the chance to come on here, I apologise in advance if I do not reply to anybody promptly but I have a busy schedule this morning. Ok here goes.

Firstly, we all have to take responsibility for how our league is viewed by outsiders because of the way we have ALL behaved since the leagues inception.

Lets look at how I see we have all behaved. Wales, here in Wales we have not helped the league over the years because of our in fighting, letting players leave, and wanting to jump into bed with the English, as a Welshman I recognise these failings and I will admit that what we have done is damaging to the league.

Scotland, for my liking Scotland over the years have not helped the league because they have allowed their teams to padded out with substandard unknown SH players that bring nothing to our league.

Italy, well, we know about them, they are constantly the bottom two sides and they do not seem to be getting any better, they are not helping the league by constantly being rubbish, they really need to up their game.

Ireland, they have not helped the league since it's inception, because they have used the league as a development tool in the past, and they have always prioritised the European competition over the league, also, they rest their star players for long periods and do not put them on show in our league which does not make it as attractive as it could be to the TV companies and other sponsors.

There this is how I view it, I understand things are now changing, especially with how we qualify for Europe, but the damage has been done to our league already, and we need to repair that damage that we all have done, thankfully, here in Wales we seem to be getting our house in order, and we are trying to make what we have work. Now unless we can all accept our parts in the leagues failings to get better media and sponsorship deals, then we will keep going around in circles, we should be debating on how we can make our league better, not denying any fault and blaming others.

I am now going to do some work, no doubt I will be pulled apart over what I have just said though.

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.

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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:26 pm

the-goon wrote:

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.  

That's because the Irish teams have twice as much money to spend on players than any other team.

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:28 pm

the-goon wrote:Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.

The provinces have won it the most because they have bigger budgets to work with than anybody else, thus can rest their CC players and still have quality, also, nobody else in the Pro12 keeps international players out of the league more than Ireland.

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Post by GoodinTightSpaces Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:30 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
the-goon wrote:Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.

The provinces have won it the most because they have bigger budgets to work with than anybody else, thus can rest their CC players and still have quality, also, nobody else in the Pro12 keeps international players out of the league more than Ireland.

will the WRU semi central contracts (what do you call them again) help the regions compete going forward???

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Post by SecretFly Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:31 pm

Chunky Norwich wrote:
the-goon wrote:

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.  

That's because the Irish teams have twice as much money to spend on players than any other team.

If so - Why?

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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:31 pm

the-goon wrote:

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation.  

I haven't seen any proof of this. Infact the only proof I have seen is to the contrary, and that Ireland have a rest period for their top players during Christmas, which the other nations do NOT have

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Post by Notch Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:33 pm

It's not a rest period, its a training camp.
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Post by SecretFly Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:33 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
the-goon wrote:Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.

The provinces have won it the most because they have bigger budgets to work with than anybody else, thus can rest their CC players and still have quality, also, nobody else in the Pro12 keeps international players out of the league more than Ireland.

Possibly nobody else in the League uses more of their players for International?  Sexton only odd man out and that will change again next season.


Last edited by SecretFly on Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:34 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:34 pm

Look, can we all accept we have been failing the league at some point during it's inception ?

Or are we going to keep telling everyone that we are blameless ?

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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:34 pm

SecretFly wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
the-goon wrote:

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.  

That's because the Irish teams have twice as much money to spend on players than any other team.

If so - Why?  

There's no "if's" about it. The reason's are many. Mostly because Ireland has a system that works for them and some of the other countries do not. This is not Ireland's fault. They have got their arses in gear. Good luck to them. But lets not kid ourselves that anyone is on a level playing field with the Irish in the pr012.

Leinster's Heaslip and Sexton are on 1.1m Euros between them. That's 23% of Welsh regional Euro squads money spent on 2 players.

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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:35 pm

Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

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Post by Notch Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:36 pm

LordDowlais wrote:Look, can we all accept we have been failing the league at some point during it's inception ?

No, I don't accept that and you haven't convinced me. I think when the league was first conceived at the start of professionalism everyone was on a massive learning curve and I think as time has gone one all of the parties involved have become more professional in how they run the league but in the last five/ten years I think the provinces couldn't have done anything more to make the league a success.
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Post by SecretFly Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:37 pm

Chunky Norwich wrote:
the-goon wrote:

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation.   

I haven't seen any proof of this. Infact the only proof I have seen is to the contrary, and that Ireland have a rest period for their top players during Christmas, which the other nations do NOT have

Other Nations should perhaps take note. Or do we mimic others to fit in? Even more hara-kiri to keep the rivals happy?

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Post by Notch Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:37 pm

Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

And thats a good thing.
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Post by Guest Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:38 pm

Notch wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

And thats a good thing.

So it is a rest?

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:39 pm

SecretFly wrote:Possibly nobody else in the League uses more of their players for International? Sexton only odd man out and that will change again next season.

Please SF, do not take me for an idiot, I know what I see when I open my eyes and watch the Pro12, and what I do not see on a regular basis are the Irish internationals, look, I am not saying these things will not change, what with the way we need to qualify for Europe and the what not, but over the years since the league started, the IRFU have treated the league with a bit of a neglectful attitude.

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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:39 pm

Griff wrote:
Notch wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

And thats a good thing.

So it is a rest?

Of course it's a rest. They're not taken out of the Munster v Leinster fixture and others, to smash seven shades of shyte out of each other.

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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:40 pm

Notch wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

And thats a good thing.

Not for the pro12, no.

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Post by Notch Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:41 pm

Griff wrote:
Notch wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

And thats a good thing.

So it is a rest?

From playing games? Yes, international players are not available for selection. Is it a rest period? No, its a training camp. It's not time off.

International players do get rest periods, for instance a week off training and playing for the frontline guys after the Six Nations. They are not training or playing that week. That is a different thing to being away at a training camp with the national coaches.
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Post by Guest Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:43 pm

LordDowlais wrote:Look, can we all accept we have been failing the league at some point during it's inception ?

Or are we going to keep telling everyone that we are blameless ?

No, I don't think we all have been failing. I don't think the Irish have done anything wrong at all. And the 'wrong' things that the regions have done in Wales is mainly internal stuff between them and their governing body. So, wrong? Nah, they stood up for themselves and are in a much better position because of it. Affect on the league? Yes, we weren't as strong as we could have been for the league in that time; the teams/players were distracted; didn't grow at a rate we could have through the stalemate; players left (allegedly) because it it. That seems to be on the mend now, and helpfully we can push on. So not wrong necessarily. It was a necessary argument we had. It affected the league negatively perhaps, but in the long run I think the internal Welsh stuff will lead to stronger sides and therefore stronger competition for the other nations and a stronger league.

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Post by Notch Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:45 pm

Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

And thats a good thing.

Not for the pro12, no.

Whats hypothetically best for the Pro12 has to be counter-balanced with the needs of international rugby and with player welfare. When you have a limited number of players they have to be managed carefully. It's really an incredibly simple concept.

The Pro12 is just one competition, we have to manage players to excel in multiple competitions and ensure that enough guys behind the international get exposed to top-level rugby as well.

If you're expecting an apology for that, prepare to be disappointed. It's a system which has been extremely successful.
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Post by Guest Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:45 pm

Notch wrote:
Griff wrote:
Notch wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
Notch wrote:It's not a rest period, its a training camp.

Tommy Bowe seems to think his body benefits from the rest.

And thats a good thing.

So it is a rest?

From playing games? Yes, international players are not available for selection. Is it a rest period? No, its a training camp. It's not time off.

International players do get rest periods, for instance a week off training and playing for the frontline guys after the Six Nations. They are not training or playing that week. That is a different thing to being away at a training camp with the national coaches.

Sorry Notch I should have put an exclamation mark to show I was jesting! I know they rest. I know they need it. I'm all for it. We all do it. We have to do it for the good of the game (I'm a sport/exercise science lecturer).

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:45 pm

Notch wrote:No, I don't accept that and you haven't convinced me. I think when the league was first conceived at the start of professionalism everyone was on a massive learning curve and I think as time has gone one all of the parties involved have become more professional in how they run the league but in the last five/ten years I think the provinces couldn't have done anything more to make the league a success.

I am not trying to convince you I am TELLING YOU. But you keep spouting out how perfect the Irish are, and you keep telling everyone how blameless you are and that it must be somebody else fault. Irish arrogance at it's highest. Whilst we are at it, lets put everything else in, you do not boo kickers, you always respect the refs, you never criticise refereeing performances, your players always respect the referee's, and your players never cheat. Oh how perfect it is to be Irish.

I know a lot of Irish people and thankfully I can tell everybody on here who is not Irish, that they do not all behave like the majority do on here.

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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:46 pm

Notch wrote:

Whats hypothetically best for the Pro12 has to be counter-balanced with the needs of international rugby and with player welfare. When you have a limited number of players they have to be managed carefully. It's really an incredibly simple concept.

The Pro12 is just one competition, we have to manage players to excel in multiple competitions and ensure that enough guys behind the international get exposed to top-level rugby as well.

If you're expecting an apology for that, prepare to be disappointed. It's a system which has been extremely successful.

I'd agree with you if it was the same for all sides. As with everything in the pro12 - it is not.

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Post by SecretFly Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:46 pm

Chunky Norwich wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
the-goon wrote:

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.  

That's because the Irish teams have twice as much money to spend on players than any other team.

If so - Why?  

There's no "if's" about it. The reason's are many. Mostly because Ireland has a system that works for them and some of the other countries do not. This is not Ireland's fault. They have got their arses in gear. Good luck to them. But lets not kid ourselves that anyone is on a level playing field with the Irish in the pr012.

Leinster's Heaslip and Sexton are on 1.1m Euros between them. That's 23% of Welsh regional Euro squads money spent on 2 players.

WRU has no money with all the extra Millennium Stadium games they get?  
Two or three more coming in a WC that they're not even 'Hosting'?  

Pride stops Regions using money that's available.  Pride in the principles.  Again, don't blame us for those peculiar Welsh principles.  

WE are being blamed for giving our players more money to keep them - OUR players btw, the stars are mostly home grown through academies.  Our players - paying to keep them.  And it's thrown at us as a reason why we can afford to put out 2nd string sides to do pretty okay against other 1st string sides Pro12 side?  

That for a start is still an illogical argument for winning and losing in league.

But it's also blatantly obvious that WRU had the cash to keep Welsh best players in Wales too.... but Regional principles on top of club principles on top of traditionalist principles prevented them from helping out.  We'll see if the new agreed way settles things down.

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Post by Guest Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:48 pm

LD, you've got a bee in your bonnet about getting everyone to agree with you on this. But what have the Irish done wrong?

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:49 pm

Notch wrote:The Pro12 is just one competition

This is the competition we are debating about isn't it ?

Look the way that the CC gets prioritised over the Pro12 is damaging for it, why can't you see this ?

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Post by Notch Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:49 pm

LordDowlais wrote:I am not trying to convince you I am TELLING YOU.


And I'm telling you I really don't agree.

LordDowlais wrote:I know a lot of Irish people and thankfully I can tell everybody on here who is not Irish, that they do not all behave like the majority do on here.


I'm sure everyone is glad you clarified that Laugh
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Post by Chunky Norwich Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:50 pm

SecretFly wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
Chunky Norwich wrote:
the-goon wrote:

Lord, it has been proven that Irish rest/rotate/don't play their stars as much as any other nation. And for a country who doesn't care/only plays their 2nd team, we do seem to win it quite often. Irish have won the league more times than any other nation, and there are at least 2 teams in the play-offs every year, alongside European success. Wales, Sco and Italy don't get close to that success.  

That's because the Irish teams have twice as much money to spend on players than any other team.

If so - Why?  

There's no "if's" about it. The reason's are many. Mostly because Ireland has a system that works for them and some of the other countries do not. This is not Ireland's fault. They have got their arses in gear. Good luck to them. But lets not kid ourselves that anyone is on a level playing field with the Irish in the pr012.

Leinster's Heaslip and Sexton are on 1.1m Euros between them. That's 23% of Welsh regional Euro squads money spent on 2 players.

WRU has no money with all the extra Millennium Stadium games they get?  
Two or three more coming in a WC that they're not even 'Hosting'?  

Pride stops Regions using money that's available.  Pride in the principles.  Again, don't blame us for those peculiar Welsh principles.  

WE are being blamed for giving our players more money to keep them - OUR players btw, the stars are mostly home grown through academies.  Our players - paying to keep them.  And it's thrown at us as a reason why we can afford to put out 2nd string sides to do pretty okay against other 1st string sides Pro12 side?  

That for a start is still an illogical argument for winning and losing in league.

But it's also blatantly obvious that WRU had the cash to keep Welsh best players in Wales too.... but Regional principles on top of club principles on top of traditionalist principles prevented them from helping out.  We'll see if the new agreed way settles things down.

I even wrote the words :

This is not Ireland's fault.

And you still responded with:

Don't blame us for those peculiar Welsh principles. WE are being blamed for giving our players more money to keep them

I think this perfectly shows how impossible it is to debate with some on here.

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Post by Notch Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:53 pm

LordDowlais wrote:Look the way that the CC gets prioritised over the Pro12 is damaging for it, why can't you see this ?

I think it would be even more damaging for the game if you had players having to retire early due to burnout, or even more injuries than we already have, or players missing the Six Nations to play in the league. If you've got a magic wand that can make players play 40 games a season with no ill effects, wave it now- please!

Otherwise, time to get acquainted with reality. The IRFU has to make decisions based on succeeding in professional rugby as a whole not just the Pro12, and based on player welfare. We have a season which is unbalanced, and there are too many games in a calendar which doesn't work.

I'd love to see that problem solved, but it's really ridiculous to point fingers based on doing whats best for the players.


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Post by LordDowlais Thu 23 Apr 2015, 12:54 pm

Griff wrote:LD, you've got a bee in your bonnet about getting everyone to agree with you on this. But what have the Irish done wrong?

I will say this ONE LAST TIME. The Irish have done NOTHING wrong, it is up to them if they want to rest their players, they have every right to look after their own needs.

BUT, when it comes to the Pro12, which is what we are talking about, and how we can get more money from sponsors and the media, the fact that nobody wants to pay as much for OUR PRODUCT, is because none of us have treated the league fairly. We have all prioritised ourselves over the league, and WE MUST ALL SHOULDER THE RESPONSIBILITY. Whether that be from in-fighting, not being good enough, bringing in sub standard foreign players, or not putting your best players on show in the league, WE ARE ALL GUILTY, but the Irish want to remain blameless.

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