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Is Rugby League dying? PLEASE READ!

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by SeaEagle9413, May 20, 2016.

  1. SeaEagle9413

    SeaEagle9413 Forward Pass

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    Well... Let me explain!

    I live in the North Western part of NSW (New England). Over the past 5-10 years, I have seen a massive change in people about what sports they follow. More and more people in New England have been turned off by Rugby League and are now following and playing more European sports such as soccer (or football), Tennis and Water sports. But that's not all. Last year I played league for my school and the season went for ONE game against another school in my town. Poor organising, lack of commitment and not giving a crap. Whereas the soccer seasons go all year round (including Twilight soccer in the summer) in my town and every kid in town signs up for it. About 3/4 of my friends have switched from supporting the NRL to the soccer A-league.

    Is this happening in City areas as well? I would love to hear your thoughts. I am really concerned with the future of rugby league in rural communities.

    It could get popular again who knows?
     
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  2. Frank

    Frank Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Wouldn't surprise me.
     
  3. EagleFromMay1967

    EagleFromMay1967 In bed before the room got dark.

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    More like being killed off.
    TV broadcasters manage / contrive it to such an extent, that the grass roots are losing interest in the "product". They'll wind up with something so far removed from an even sporting competition they will be forced to abandon the "product ". At which point they will turn to the A league, and proceed to ruin it as well.
     
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  4. MissKate

    MissKate Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    nrl just not interested, they have pushed the responsibility of growing the game onto the individual clubs instead of taking ownership of the responsibility from a holistic view. They would rather invest money jetting around the world on jollies to all the major world events, never learning anything useful. Beats the pants off touring greater Australia to rebuild the game
     
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  5. mozgrame

    mozgrame Well-Known Member

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    I live in CQ and league is still alive here, but it is being hit from all sides by soccer, AFL, union, and a whole range of other sports and activities. Even mixed martial arts is starting to draw on the local league players as their builds and fitness are a good foundation for a career in that sport.

    Perhaps it is a sign of the times, with such a rich multi cultural community (no one really gets how multi cultural Rockhampton is now days with many festivals and events held throughout the year) that is bringing sports from other countries alive in rural areas. We even have our own Indian cricket team here in Rocky.

    I would have to say though that the amount of talent Central (and the rest of) Qld are pumping into the NRL each year proves that local grass roots/kids footy is still very much alive and kicking.
     
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  6. Frogz

    Frogz Don't mess with the goat, he has photos. Premium Member

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    Never fear, Super Greenturd is here .
     
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  7. damiennp90

    damiennp90 Well-Known Member

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    Can we try and not be soo negative.

    With Fox joining this year ratings are higher than ever.

    And that's all that matters really.

    The game is here to stay. And if your on here you love it too :).
     
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  8. marcjohnpsg

    marcjohnpsg Active Member

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    There is a lot of problems with Rugby League. These issues revolve around player safety, bias in the media, NRL players themselves and the overall management of the game.

    Let us use the Parramatta Eels as an example of the problems in Rugby League. Nathan Peats should be praised immensely for his selfless act. Peats has been an exceptional player for that club and he bluntly deserved better. What has been highlighted from this whole Parramatta issue is how the media has blatantly failed to scrutinise the Eels players and coach Brad Arthur, but has rather continually praised them. If there is such a great bond and commitment in that team, why didn’t Peats higher paid team mates offer to take a collective pay cut so he could stay? Let us face facts, if the Eels had not exceeded the salary cap, they may well be without the likes of Jennings, Foran and Scott. These players are primarily the first who should be putting up their hands, given that they profited from the disgraceful Eels board’s flouting of the salary cap rules.

    Secondly, I continually hear from a number of media sources how Brad Arthur has ‘held the team together’ and how he ‘carries himself with such distinction’. It would seem that people in the media sometimes have a selective memory. Let us not forget, this is the same Arthur who death stares people when he does not like a tough but fair question. This is the same Brad Arthur who threw water from a bottle at a member of the media. The apologists and failures of objectivity will excuse make for him, but he has never apologised or altered his behaviour. I think it is testament to his lack of character that he is only civil and decent when his team is winning. This not only demonstrates a lack of maturity, but a lack of sincerity also. Is it any wonder that the AFL is generally seen as a polished and class filled game while the NRL, who can boast an enviable game competiveness, is run with dysfunction and possesses a majority bad culture among its players. I say this excluding the likes of current players such as Cooper Cronk or Matt Ballin.

    I think that Phil Rothfield’s article regarding how thuggery is turning parents and their children away from the game, was both articulate and very well written. Unfortunately, Rothfield’s bias toward the Cronulla Sharks has clouded his reason or ability to take his very important piece where it needed to go. It should have named individuals in the Paul Gallen and Adam Blair mold specifically. On this theme, Paul Gallen is a prime example of what is wrong with rugby league. He lashes out at members of the media when they criticise him, has a moody demeanor toward supporters, uses foul and illegal tactics on the playing field and is not truly respected or admired by his team mates, particularly at the state level. On this, not only should the league come down hard on foul play, but also put in mandatory 'Learn or Earn' regulations on players away from their playing/training commitments.

    In summary, if Rugby League is serious about being all that it can be, then take a good look at the AFL for ideas and inspiration. People like Phil Gould rather than John Grant should be in the head office. There needs to be an acceptance that League is not really an international sport, so create a representative competition that works. Semi Radradra should be playing for an Oceania side comprised of PNG, Fiji, Tonga and Samoa, and not Australia. There should also be a 'Europe National Side' made up of players from French, Italian, Irish, Maltese and Greek heritage or birth as a starter.
     
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  9. Ralphie

    Ralphie Well-Known Member Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Wrong & wrong. NRL is anything but assured of being here to stay and I, like many others are here because of our committment to our club rather than the current incarnation of Rugby League. I yearn for the pre-Super League game that I loved so much. The current NRL product is a contrived, almost pre-determined, grossly uneven game that I have heard it described more and more like the WWE.
     
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  10. TerryRandall

    TerryRandall Well-Known Member

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    Totally agree. But the bottom line for me is the game has just become so damn boring, predictable and basically at the whim of the whistleblowers. I rarely watch non manly games these days, just can't be bothered. Early 90s was when the game was at its peak for me.
     
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  11. mosto

    mosto Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Just out of interest, when was the last time your school had a visit from an NRL player, or even a development officer visited your school for a skills session or just a simple meet and greet? I'm in central west nsw we're a bit lucky to have the Panthers association with Bathurst, so when they hold an NRL game there, they send players up during the week to do school visits. This year their opposition, Canberra, got in on the act as well and sent some players to visit the schools in our area.

    However, any area that doesn't have a direct link with an NRL club doesn't seem to even be on the radar. Central Coast Mariners and GWS have a pretty big presence out here and the Wallabies have held training camps out this way, and I believe those sports are doing this virtually everywhere.

    I believe each NRL club should be assigned an area, and part of the NRL grant they receive should be spent on developing League in their area. Also, I think they should take two NRL games to their area, as well as send fringe/injured/suspended players for regular school/junior club visits. In return, that area effectively becomes their local area and they have 'first refusal' on any juniors that come from that area.
     
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  12. Chip and Chase

    Chip and Chase True Supporter Staff Member Administrator Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Grass roots rugby league in the country has been struggling for years. What it needs is a good dose of fertiliser to make it grow and prosper to strengthen the code as a whole, instead the powers to be seem to want to treat it with a dose of Round Up. I look at the AFL model and how it invests in its foundations and build communities, and wonder why the NRL can't do the same ? The top of the Rugby league pyramid is well looked after, has fresh coats of paint and lots of bells and whistles, meanwhile the footings are crumbling.
     
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  13. nightster

    nightster grumpy old bastard

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    are you serious are you a Fox or NRL exec?
     
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  14. MissKate

    MissKate Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Ratings are only higher on Fox due to people switching from Ch9 to watch games. I doubt overall ratings have increased much if at all
     
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  15. Rusty Cage

    Rusty Cage Active Member

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    Not sure if your post is full of sarcasm or not?

    It's not us we need to worry about, it's if our kids will be interested in Rugby League.
     
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  16. EagleFromMay1967

    EagleFromMay1967 In bed before the room got dark.

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    Speaking of player safety, the backline players have to be so "big" these days. The NRL, SOO and test matches are a bash, barge chickenwinging wrestle-athon. Bellamy and T Robinson introduced much of these tactics and add to that the influx of big boned islander forwards (and backs) into the comp and you have short playing careers. Praps the NFL have it right in making the season only 16 rounds long.
    Its not a game for the likes of a Corowa, Irvine Gasnier or even Lyon, DCE, Snake anymore. Just about every 'lighter' player has their knees crack up a couple of years into their careers. Ankles are next: despite his height, TT has now a chronic ankle problem. Every round there are ACL, PCLs going bust. I see the most obviously crippling incidents in just about every match I watch. The force, in hits, the lack of policing of shoulder charges, chickwinging etc is turning fans off.
     
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  17. Woodsie

    Woodsie played strong, done good.

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    Administrations come and go. NRL has been woeful for years but that will change.

    Rugby League will always survive as a spectator sport, gladiatorial contests have been around for ever. You don't have to have played the game to be excited by the tribal contest. A growing demographic is female fans that have never played the game.

    The major problem the game faces is the continued drop in Junior and senior participation numbers. The simple fact is that the physical demands of the modern game have moved it to the point where it is now out of the realms of possibility for some 90% of kids to play, and what adult can afford to play for fun with the risk of injury so great.

    By the time kids reach the low teens, natural selection has eliminated all but the strongest. For example, my own boy went ok, but when he reached the u/12's he was playing locke at 62kg. His two props were 96kg and 102 kg. By the time he had grown and could physically match them (18yr) he had already been lost to the game.

    Next time your at the local park, see how many "non athletic" kids are playing rugby league past 10 years old. There is always room in soccer, AFL, and Union for these kids. Doesn't mean however that they wont grow up League fans.
     
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  18. mozgrame

    mozgrame Well-Known Member

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    We get current players, usually from the Qld sides here regularly. I remember a while ago, my young bloke was at a clinic with Gavin Cooper and at the end, Coop was signing posters and stuff and handing it out. He asked my young bloke what he wanted and he answered, "Anything with Manly on it, otherwise...don't worry about it". Hahaha! Guess who got Maccas after school that day? :)

    What we do here in Qld is to get the older retired guys involved in activities for kids. It's a win/win. The kids get excited. The kids parents get a buzz, the retired players love it, and footy is the winner. You can't expect current players to travel mid week for clinics (unless, as @mosto states, they are injured etc) but you can get blokes freshly, and some not so freshly, to visit.

    The trick to keeping young kids involved in league is to keep the parents involved and excited about it. Hitting the schools is great, but getting players and ex players to visit local clubs on weekends to watch kids play and offer encouragement and advice, then socialise with the parents (BBQs etc) is paramount.

    So, the thing is...are players that have made a career from the game willing to give up some spare time to make country footy clubs, kids, fans and parents happy? Because little clubs can't pay them for their visits. If they are willing, the game will flourish.

    Just my opinion. It doesn't mean much.
     
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  19. Clay

    Clay Well-Known Member

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    92 and 106kg at 12yrs those are some big boys
     
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  20. Killer03

    Killer03 Well-Known Member

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    I do think the clubs could do more with community engagement around the country (at least NSW and QLD).

    I live in the Hunter Valley and my kids are at school here, I think my boy mentioned a few years ago that a Knight was at his school. Now we are in Knights Heartland (ok 45mins away, but well and truly in their area) and to think that's only happened once in his 5 years at school is a little bit surprising.

    I think the formula for grassroots engagement whilst not a simple formula, certainly starts with getting the kids involved. You get kids engaged and excited and treat them well, and they (and their parents) are fans for life.

    If this is happening so rarely here, what chance do places in the middle of NSW have? Good on the Panthers for their trip out to Bathurst. More of that needs to happen from the teams.
     

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