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Statistical look at matches played by hemisphere

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Statistical look at matches played by hemisphere Empty Statistical look at matches played by hemisphere

Post by robbo277 Mon 01 Feb 2016, 7:12 pm

It's the first week in August 2015. You've just had a fantastic 2015 Junior World Championship, and you're looking to start to progress to senior rugby. You never get tired and you never break down, so you are available for 1 game of rugby a week and you will always play for the highest team that wants you.

Year 1

Northern Hemisphere Path
Although your early season form is good, you don't break into the Six Nations squad. However, your late season form really picks up and you and your team reaches finals in your domestic and European. This brings you into contention for the 2016 summer tours and you play 3 tests.

Southern Hemisphere Path
You play in your domestic competition, where your team makes the final. You get picked up by a Super Rugby province, and play well up until the interval, receiving an international call up and 3 caps in the home series. You go back to your province and make the Super Rugby final.

Analysis
The Northern Hemisphere player (assuming he plays in the Premiership or the Pro12) has played 22 domestic league games, 6 Continental pool games, 5 play-off games and 3 internationals, giving a total of 36.
The Southern Hemisphere player (assuming he plays in the ITM) has played 10 domestic league games, 15 Continental pool games, 5 play-off games and 3 internationals, giving a total of 33.

Year 2

Northern Hemisphere Path
Second year you stay in the international squad, but carry on turning out for your club. You're released for 4 weeks in the Autumn and 7 weeks in the Six Nations, before making a standard summer tour (i.e. not Lions). You again make two finals.

Southern Hemisphere Path
You play 6 Rugby Championship games, before finishing the season with an away tour to the Northern Hemisphere. You then play a full Super Rugby season and make the final again, pausing to play a three test home series in June.

Analysis
The Northern Hemisphere player (based on 2014/15 Aviva Premiership dates) has missed 3 games in November and 4 games in the Spring. He's therefore played 15 domestic league games, 6 Continental Pool games, 5 play-off games and 11 tests., giving a total of 37.
The Southern Hemisphere player has played 0 domestic league games, 15 Continental pool games, 3 play-off games and 12 tests, giving a total of 30 games.

The Northern Hemisphere player has seen his workload maintained (and possibly even increased) as he moves into the International scene. The Southern Hemisphere player has seen a slight reduction. From playing 9% more games than the Southern Hemisphere player, the Northern Hemisphere player is now playing 23% more games.

The make-up of the games is also important. If you count domestic play-off games on a par with continental games, the Northern Hemisphere player played 61% of his rugby at the lowest level (domestic league) in the first season, and 41% in the second season. Second tier (continental pool and play-off games) accounted for 31% in the first season and 30% in the second season.
Contrast this with the Southern Hemisphere player, who played 30% of his games at the lowest level in the first season and 0% in the second season. Second tier club games accounted for 61% of the games played in the first season and 60% in the second season - so twice as many as the Northern Hemisphere player.

As we embark on another Six Nations, I truly believe that the structure of the Northern Hemisphere club season is holding the Northern Hemisphere teams back. I am sure we will see a fantastic tournament for those with vested interests, especially if we get close to the drama of last year's final day, or the intensity of Wales' defensive effort against Ireland the week before.

But until we sort our domestic seasons so that our best players are playing against each other on a more regular basis, come the summer tour, autumn series and eventually the Rugby World Cup in 2019 we'll find ourselves off the pace yet again.

robbo277

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Statistical look at matches played by hemisphere Empty Re: Statistical look at matches played by hemisphere

Post by The Great Aukster Mon 01 Feb 2016, 11:20 pm

robbo277 wrote:It's the first week in August 2015. You've just had a fantastic 2015 Junior World Championship, and you're looking to start to progress to senior rugby. You never get tired and you never break down, so you are available for 1 game of rugby a week and you will always play for the highest team that wants you.

This is where you lost me Robbo!

Players won't play every game so this assumption is to all intents impossible and therefore undermines everything that comes after it. How exactly are the number of games or the structure harming NH rugby? Your assumption assumes no fatigue or injuries so surely the more games a player has means the quicker they pick up match experience?

The Great Aukster

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