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I did hear Scotland were rebranding their domestic top flight and a TV deal was being done but not heard much more though the virus would of put a stop to it at the moment.

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1 hour ago, Richspeedway said:

I did hear Scotland were rebranding their domestic top flight and a TV deal was being done but not heard much more though the virus would of put a stop to it at the moment.

There was supposed to be a cross-border comp. that should have started towards the end of last season with Scottish Super Six and Welsh Premiership teams involved but that didn't happen unfortunately:( I'd booked time off work to attend a couple of these games!:rolleyes:

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3 hours ago, DC2 said:

Regional Super Rugby works very well in the Southern Hemisphere in terms of improving the quality of players.

Again, the market also isn't really there to support more than 4 or 5 professional teams in each country, and even some of those were struggling financially even before COVID. Rugby Union is only the fourth sport in Australia.

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7 hours ago, Richspeedway said:

They missed a trick with their top flight and not make it professional. Like said the regions are not well supported by fans as some are merged like Newport/Gwent Dragons.

Merging rival teams is rarely going to fly with some, but I don't think there was a lot of choice if Welsh rugby was going to go professional. There simply wasn't the market to support 10 professional teams, so the danger was some would have to overstretch themselves and go under, or the whole competition would have to be run at a semi-professional level which would disadvantage Wales with respect to the other major nations. 

Of course 4 or 5 teams isn't enough for a viable competition, so Wales would have had to thrown in its lot with another country, although perhaps England would have been the better option. The problem with the Pro-whateveritscalledthesedays is that having loads of random countries taking part - particularly with the South Africans joining - means it's lacking any sort of context. 

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9 hours ago, Richspeedway said:

 Like said the regions are not well supported by fans as some are merged like Newport/Gwent Dragons. 

Bang on Rich:t:I remember going to Pontypool RFC after the regional rugby had been decided where a few supporters I spoke to said they'd lost their identity as a club and were told that the team to follow was Gwent Dragons region:unsure:

Then the best of the Welsh region teams Celtic Warriors(Pontypridd/Bridgend) were done away with!!:blink:

 

Edited by bluejam
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14 hours ago, Richspeedway said:

The Welsh Premiership and domestic leagues below are still running to this day but not sure what the crowds are like at these games now. They missed a trick with their top flight and not make it professional. Like said the regions are not well supported by fans as some are merged like Newport/Gwent Dragons. A few years back they did do a British & Irish Cup which was a great idea. Welsh sides played teams from English Championship and also teams from Scotland and Ireland top domestic flight. Unfortunately it did not last as like most things under the professional leagues it was marketed well and lack of TV coverage and sponsorship saw the end of it.

I would love to see the Welsh Premiership become a professional setup and see some of those sides that played in Euro Cup way back but I doubt we will see it happen :(

Some of the bigger club sides are well supported. Newport were sometimes still getting comparable figures to Dragons crowds.

12 hours ago, bluejam said:

Add Pontypool and Pontypridd to that list CC;)

I agree - i probably could

11 hours ago, DC2 said:

Regional Super Rugby works very well in the Southern Hemisphere in terms of improving the quality of players.

Definitely does, and i think hat happened initially with Welsh Rugby - with improved fitness, better structure, more investment - the players you listed show that.

How much of that simply was down to the quality of players in my age bracket remains to be seen. But a playing pool of 60 players starting games at regional level isn't a big pool of players to choose from. Personally i don't think the Regions have managed to maintain the quality in youth development.

You look at a lot of the best players coming through for us and they generally have all moved across to England at a young age.

7 hours ago, Humphrey Appleby said:

Merging rival teams is rarely going to fly with some, but I don't think there was a lot of choice if Welsh rugby was going to go professional. There simply wasn't the market to support 10 professional teams, so the danger was some would have to overstretch themselves and go under, or the whole competition would have to be run at a semi-professional level which would disadvantage Wales with respect to the other major nations. 

Of course 4 or 5 teams isn't enough for a viable competition, so Wales would have had to thrown in its lot with another country, although perhaps England would have been the better option. The problem with the Pro-whateveritscalledthesedays is that having loads of random countries taking part - particularly with the South Africans joining - means it's lacking any sort of context. 

Merging the teams eradicated support immediately for the Regions. Going in with England for the Regions would have been a far better decision at the time.

At the time there wasn't a market for 8 or 10 professional teams, there was no desire or vision for it.

And it's very easy to argue that there is no Market for it based on regional average attendance figures. Talking about 27K people going to watch Rugby on average.

  • If the Blues, Dragons, Ospreys & Scarlets were called Cardiff, Newport, Swansea & Llanelli - crowds would be highly likely to be bigger. I'd be fairly certain in Newports case it would be significantly more
  • Crowds for Welsh Derbies are significantly higher than you would get for other Pro 14 games.
  • Having been to Judgement day a few times. It attracts big crowds, Wales at International level generally have strong attendances.
  • We have a population of approximately 3M people

At the same time whilst i was in School Welsh Football teams in South Wales were supported terribly

Cardiff & Swansea were in Division 3 getting 2.5K - 4K people - who would ever have predicted that they could get to the premiership and sell out 20K-30K seated Stadiums.Newport County get approximately 3K crowds sometimes as high as 5K for League 2 football, when i was in school they were in non league football getting 600-1000 people going to watch them.

Ice Hockey and Cardiff Devils went through a phase of being relatively successful when i was young to spending to much, financially being in a mess, losing their Rink. They were saved had big Investment - a new venue built and regularly sell out now - because they have been successful and they have a very young and loyal fan base.

I enjoy all sport, but i don't really go and watch Pro 14 Rugby because Welsh Regions are rubbish, Welsh Internationals don't really play, they don't have the financial clout for players, the league structure is a joke and i don't think it's VFM. Most of my friends are the same.

I think if we had our own league (8,9,10 teams) and if the welsh teams were good, there would be far far more interest in it than the Regional structure that we have.

I can't really argue that financially it would be viable - but at the same i don't think that having a small league of 8-10 teams would be any worse than what we have now.

 

5 hours ago, bluejam said:

Bang on Rich:t:I remember going to Pontypool RFC after the regional rugby had been decided where a few supporters I spoke to said they'd lost their identity as a club and were told that the team to follow was Gwent Dragons region:unsure:

Then the best of the Welsh region teams Celtic Warriors(Pontypridd/Bridgend) were done away with!!:blink:

 

Definitely - having lived in the area my whole life - all of the fans of clubs in the "region" have no interest in supporting the Dragons. By dropping Newport from the name- support from people in Newport also dropped. 

Situation replicated across the Regions and because they are not very good support has never improved

Edited by CrystalCastles
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Congratulations to Scotland on an excellent win,quite superb:t:.Don't think I've ever seen the Red Rose play so poorly:unsure:Absolutely shocking performance!!

Whilst shopping this afternoon in Knutsford I met Sale Sharks DoR Alex Sanderson.Top fella:t:

 

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Brilliant Scotland.  Like Brilliant France in our last match.  England were inept.

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1 hour ago, bluejam said:

Congratulations to Scotland on an excellent win,quite superb:t:.Don't think I've ever seen the Red Rose play so poorly:unsure:Absolutely shocking performance!!

Whilst shopping this afternoon in Knutsford I met Sale Sharks DoR Alex Sanderson.Top fella:t:

 

Well done France and Scotland. France comfortable win and no doubt the Georgia/promotion relegation debate will start.

England just did not turn up but fair play Scotland good win.

Alex always comes across as a top man hope he can carry on what Diamond was doing and push them into a playoff regular side and push for titles.

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15 minutes ago, Richspeedway said:

Alex always comes across as a top man hope he can carry on what Diamond was doing and push them into a playoff regular side and push for titles.

Looks though he had the same Sharks gear on that he had last night at Bristol :lol: and there were a few bottles of red in his trolley too:rofl:Top bloke indeed;)

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On 2/5/2021 at 7:12 PM, CrystalCastles said:

Some of the bigger club sides are well supported. Newport were sometimes still getting comparable figures to Dragons crowds.

I agree - i probably could

Definitely does, and i think hat happened initially with Welsh Rugby - with improved fitness, better structure, more investment - the players you listed show that.

How much of that simply was down to the quality of players in my age bracket remains to be seen. But a playing pool of 60 players starting games at regional level isn't a big pool of players to choose from. Personally i don't think the Regions have managed to maintain the quality in youth development.

You look at a lot of the best players coming through for us and they generally have all moved across to England at a young age.

Merging the teams eradicated support immediately for the Regions. Going in with England for the Regions would have been a far better decision at the time.

At the time there wasn't a market for 8 or 10 professional teams, there was no desire or vision for it.

And it's very easy to argue that there is no Market for it based on regional average attendance figures. Talking about 27K people going to watch Rugby on average.

  • If the Blues, Dragons, Ospreys & Scarlets were called Cardiff, Newport, Swansea & Llanelli - crowds would be highly likely to be bigger. I'd be fairly certain in Newports case it would be significantly more
  • Crowds for Welsh Derbies are significantly higher than you would get for other Pro 14 games.
  • Having been to Judgement day a few times. It attracts big crowds, Wales at International level generally have strong attendances.
  • We have a population of approximately 3M people

At the same time whilst i was in School Welsh Football teams in South Wales were supported terribly

Cardiff & Swansea were in Division 3 getting 2.5K - 4K people - who would ever have predicted that they could get to the premiership and sell out 20K-30K seated Stadiums.Newport County get approximately 3K crowds sometimes as high as 5K for League 2 football, when i was in school they were in non league football getting 600-1000 people going to watch them.

Ice Hockey and Cardiff Devils went through a phase of being relatively successful when i was young to spending to much, financially being in a mess, losing their Rink. They were saved had big Investment - a new venue built and regularly sell out now - because they have been successful and they have a very young and loyal fan base.

I enjoy all sport, but i don't really go and watch Pro 14 Rugby because Welsh Regions are rubbish, Welsh Internationals don't really play, they don't have the financial clout for players, the league structure is a joke and i don't think it's VFM. Most of my friends are the same.

I think if we had our own league (8,9,10 teams) and if the welsh teams were good, there would be far far more interest in it than the Regional structure that we have.

I can't really argue that financially it would be viable - but at the same i don't think that having a small league of 8-10 teams would be any worse than what we have now.

 

Definitely - having lived in the area my whole life - all of the fans of clubs in the "region" have no interest in supporting the Dragons. By dropping Newport from the name- support from people in Newport also dropped. 

Situation replicated across the Regions and because they are not very good support has never improved

I did support the Dragons in Cork against Munster. There were no Welshmen present, and the other 9000 people present were all Irish. Dragons were battered. Its different in Ireland. The province of Leinster has a population of 2.5 million, higher than the whole of South Wales. Munster can attract 25000 in Limerick. What size crowds do the Welsh region's get?

Well done Scotland.

Edited by auntie doris
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1 hour ago, auntie doris said:

I did support the Dragons in Cork against Munster. There were no Welshmen present, and the other 9000 people present were all Irish. Dragons were battered. Its different in Ireland. The province of Leinster has a population of 2.5 million, higher than the whole of South Wales. Munster can attract 25000 in Limerick. What size crowds do the Welsh region's get?

Well done Scotland.

Very poor Average attendances, between 4.5K and 7.7K

I think support is low for lots of complex reasons though and I also don't think the regional structure is fit for purpose anymore. The Pro 14 isn't very well supported in Wales and very few people travel to watch games.

I'm sure that if the standard of rugby played by Welsh teams was better and we had retained our own league competition. Support would be significantly higher.

At the time when regional rugby was decided to be the solution it undoubtedly made lots of sense. But now we have a board that is considering moving the Dragons franchise to North Wales & wants to grow the game across the country I.e. outside of South Wales.

It's hard to generate interest in teams that are rubbish and very unlikely to win anything.

Also having 4 regions means a smaller player pool, which is fine if standards remain high, and you have a conveyor belt of players.

People can sit outside of Wales and say there is no interest and support for the game.

But I would say that was the case for the welsh football, support15 years ago at both club and international level was poor.

You have to have a good product and successful teams to generate interest and Wales regional rugby doesn't provide either.

 

 

 

Edited by CrystalCastles

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3 hours ago, bluejam said:

Congratulations to Scotland on an excellent win,quite superb:t:.Don't think I've ever seen the Red Rose play so poorly:unsure:Absolutely shocking performance!!

Whilst shopping this afternoon in Knutsford I met Sale Sharks DoR Alex Sanderson.Top fella:t:

 

England were awful don't think they have ever played that badly.

Scotland completely dominated and controlled the game from start to finish. 

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2 minutes ago, CrystalCastles said:

England were awful don't think they have ever played that badly.

Scotland completely dominated and controlled the game from start to finish. 

Unbelievable amount of possession for Scotland from a brilliant game plan to constantly turn England and make them play in their own half, supplemented by an awful England penalty count, clueless kicking the ball away when they finally did get possession and poor performances by everyone bar Itoje.

Unlike Scotland, England rarely kicked to touch for territory and instead kept kicking straight to Scotland’s back three.

And England have no idea what to do with their backs when faced with no space from a rush defence: don’t keep taking a crash ball into a tackle or kick it across field, chip over the top immediately to make them hesitate or send it straight through the hands to the wing without every player looking to run ten metres.

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Wales terrible. 

Ireland by far the better side with 14 men.
Only positives for me, Toby looks like he has found some form, Rees-Zammit finished well. North took his opportunity to score and we didn't lose.

Wales really have no idea how to play, or what they are trying to achieve. Set pieces continue to be really awful. 

 

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