1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

NRL Nines

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by Kiwi Eagle, Nov 18, 2012.

  1. Kiwi Eagle

    Kiwi Eagle Moderator Staff Member 2017 Tipping Competitor

    +3,886 /65
    A National Rugby League nine-a-side competition in Auckland would be the richest league tournament in the world, perhaps the richest sporting event in the country, and could rival the Wellington Sevens, its backers claim.

    Former Kiwis player Dean Lonergan and business partner David Higgins say their NRL Nines, to launch in late January 2014, could surpass the Wellington Sevens in audience figures and prizemoney, expected to total about $3 million a year, although Lonergan would not confirm that figure.

    "It will be the country's biggest sporting event," Lonergan predicted. "If we draw 100,000 over two days, then there will be nothing that matches that. I think it could also be the richest sporting event in the country."

    All 16 NRL clubs have expressed provisional support for the tournament, and would commit to sending their entire first-grade squads - meaning the game's stars such as Kiwis captain Benji Marshall and Sonny Bill Williams could play.

    Auckland Council's events arm, ATEED, has given provisional agreement to provide substantial financial backing and Sky TV may televise the event.

    Higgins and Lonergan first pitched the event to the NRL in August, and will tomorrow meet senior officials, including interim chief executive Shane Mattiske, to finalise arrangements. Lonergan said he was confident a contract would be signed by next month.

    Among the event's backers are ex-Aussie test captain Mal Meninga and the New Zealand Rugby League chief executive Jim Doyle.

    NRL communications director John Brady said after the first meeting between the two groups: "There was significant interest from the clubs, but there is a lot of work to make it happen."

    Warriors chief executive Wayne Scurrah: "Any concept that brings international football to this country we would be extremely excited about, and it would be a fantastic way to launch the season."

    Higgins, initially reluctant to comment, said: "I want to stress it is not a done deal - the NRL and the clubs are doing due diligence. We are in the hands of the NRL and clubs, but it would be a privilege to work with one of the most forward-thinking and innovative sport organisations in the world."

    But he described the nines as a potential "Holy Grail".

    "We believe it has the potential to become the most iconic, most valuable annual event here, and a fixture for Auckland for generations to come. It would take the sold-out party atmosphere of the Wellington Sevens and the dynamite on-field product of the best players, best clubs and best competition in the world and make the perfect event."
    Ad Feedback

    Higgins and Lonergan are in discussions with Eden Park, but say they would also consider building huge temporary stands at Mt Smart to raise its capacity to 45,000.

    ATEED confirmed its provisional support for the event, saying it had made a "conditional commercial sponsorship offer" but wouldn't reveal numbers. It said it believed it could become an "economic anchor event . . . a fantastic event for Auckland".

    A rugby league sevens event ran in Sydney from 1988 to 2004, when club fears about player burnout halted it.

    - © Fairfax NZ News
  2. Blake

    Blake Active Member

    +103 /1
    A good chance to send one or two first grade players and a handful of fringe players too.
    • Like Like x 3
    • eagles2win

      eagles2win Well-Known Member

      +494 /0
      Clubs that do this should get punished via lost of comp points in the season proper and fines.
      Unless proven otherwise that players are unfit.
    • Jono

      Jono Well-Known Member

      +176 /5
      I agree. I was a massive fan of the World Sevens tournament and was disappointed to see it go. It would be great to see it back in a different format. With $3 million on the line as well, it is in the best interests for clubs to send their best players.

      It will also give a club like Cronulla or Souths, who don't win much, something to play for during the year.

      Anyways, the top players get paid enough, they can play a few extra games. It would be huge for NZRL but only if they get all the superstars of the game there. That could also include the best of Super League too.

      There should also be an NAB Cup type tournament instead of trials as well
    • Frogz

      Frogz Well-Known Member Premium Member

      +1,933 /43
      We dont have to wory about player burnout....They want to play Rugby in the off season.....

      The Sevens were great.
    • manlywarringah

      manlywarringah Well-Known Member Premium Member 2017 Tipping Competitor

      +1,256 /40
      Make the prizemoney VERY GOOD and go down to the 6th or so team and then the clubs can decide whether they want to send in the players to win the tournament.

      If clubs were playing for $400,000 1st prize and work out the other prizes, i'm sure they would want a piece of that and would send their best team.

      If they expect almost 100,000 people to attend, surely they would make well over $1.5 mill - $2 million? Corporates etc.

      Also, the tv money would be very good. The organises would be able to offer $1 million dollar in prizemoney and it would be up to which clubs wanted to compete with their best team for the title.

      I'd even consider flying over for it!

      The NRL have to up the premiership winning dollars though. I'm not sure if the grand final winners even get $400,000.
      • Like Like x 1
      • Jono

        Jono Well-Known Member

        +176 /5
        Premiers get $1 million, minor premiers $100,000. I agree that this has to be raised considerably. I'd have it at $1 million for minor premiers, $100,000 for making the finals. Then you give a certain amount for the level you were knocked out. eg:

        knocked out in the first week: nothing (they already got $100,000)
        knocked out in the 2nd week: $250,000
        knocked out in the preliminary finals: $500,000
        Runner up: $1 million
        Premiers: $2 million

        This is $6.2 million in prize money. If this tournament they are talking about can have half of this split over the top 4 teams it would be worth any team sending their best over, not to mention the value they would get on a personal basis as well.
      • Rambo1987

        Rambo1987 Well-Known Member

        +241 /2
        Bring back Mid-Week Cups as well as 7s or 9s, we seemed to have a mortage on them.
      • bones

        bones Bones Knows

        +9,037 /102
        The Sharks are apparently keen for the Nines to start, as they believe they may have enough to players to field a team in that.
        • Like Like x 2
        • ManlyBacker

          ManlyBacker Winging it Staff Member

          +972 /7
          The NRL is going to rename it "Sixes and Sevens"

        Share This Page