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2017 - Rugby Championship - Highlights (Rounds ~ 3-4):

RND (3):

New Zealand v Argentina (Taranaki) - NZ Win (39 / 22) 

Australia v South Africa (Perth) - Draw (23 / 23) 

 

RND (4):

New Zealand v South Africa (North Harbour) ~ Massive Blowout / NZ Brilliant ~  NZ Win (57 / 0) 

Australia v Argentina (Canberra) - AUS Win (45 / 20) 

Edited by Marc MacGyver

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2017/18 - Aviva Premiership - Best Tries, RND 3:

(Malouf Try -  Voted the best of the round) 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

EXTRAS:

(England teammates James Haskell & Joe Marler get into it on the pitch. Then, bury the hatchet after.)

 

~~~~~

Highlights / Regular Season / RND 3 / Newcastle Falcons v Saracens - On the road in America...

(Talen Energy Stadium - Chester, Pennsylvania - Home of the - Philadelphia Union / MLS ) 

 

I watched this game & it was dour, just an awful advertisement for rugby union. 

Unlike football (Soccer) which is a legitimate global game, that has both high profile international competitions & domestic / club leagues - with recognised big name teams.

Rugby Union only possesses a decent profile at the international (Test) level (Sevens included - now it's in the Olympics). It lacks the global popularity for its domestic competitions to garner any serious interest outside of the traditional rugby markets.

Considering the - Terrible crowd, flat atmosphere, poor quality rugby, low profile & lack of hype for the Aviva Premiership in the US...

 It makes you wonder if this American experiment is worth it for the premiership? 

~~~

Crowd: 6,271 - In a small stadium with a capacity of 18,500

That doesn't make for good reading.

Not only would the NFL never consider playing in a 18,000 seat stadium, a crowd of just over 6,000 would kill any further plans to return.  

~~~

(Article / review of game)

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/sep/17/philadelphia-saracens-newcastle-premiership-american-rugby-dream

Quote

McCafferty said: “For this sort of stadium, I would say we would have to be [selling out] within a three-year period. Otherwise, something’s not right.” It was left unsaid but in June, Premiership Rugby and its American partner, AEG Rugby, said a 2017 sell-out was “integral to the project”. This week, a 10,000 crowd was predicted.

~~~ 

Recently the Crusaders from Super Rugby, were also involved in an attempt to organise a domestic league level match in the US against a local team. But once again; lack of interest put an end to further negotiations.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

International level rugby union on the other hand, has done well for itself in the US recently.

The All Blacks (Rugby's highest profile team & biggest name / brand) have sold out Soldier Field in Chicago twice. First in 2014 against the US Eagles, & then repeated the feat when they met the Irish national team in 2016.

Ireland always generates interest, & has decent attendances in the US. 

Australia in 2015 pre World Cup also did ok.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

Ultimately, if you are trying to grow interest in the game in foreign markets, you have to showcase the best a sport can offer. 

In Rugby Union it's - Elite International Level Rugby 

In American Football it's - Elite Domestic League Competition (NFL)

In Football (Soccer) it's - Both Elite International Level & Elite Domestic League Competitions.  

  

Edited by Marc MacGyver

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3 hours ago, Marc MacGyver said:

 It makes you wonder if this American experiment is worth it for the premiership?

Lot of discussion on this at the moment. 

Most feel it's too much too soon. 

They think it would be better to promote the American game and maybe have 1 or 2 exhibition matches before trying again. 

The $$$ probably speak though. They have a 4 year deal I believe. 

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On 19/09/2017 at 7:58 PM, texans_uk said:

Lot of discussion on this at the moment. 

Most feel it's too much too soon. 

They think it would be better to promote the American game and maybe have 1 or 2 exhibition matches before trying again. 

The $$$ probably speak though. They have a 4 year deal I believe. 

Yeah, the deal is for 4 years, & this is the 2nd game of that deal.

While I still believe Tier 1 - Internationals are the best option to promote rugby in emerging markets.

 I'll acknowledge... 

 If there is a domestic league capable of generating interest outside of traditional rugby strongholds? It's the Aviva. I think without question it's the best overall league in the world, particularly in terms of combining off field administration, & the quality of the on field product.   

Super Rugby destroyed its popularity, & overall standard by being greedy, & through reckless expansion. There are simply far too many poor teams running around, & it' s spread over too many time zones.   

 It'll be interesting to see if the expansion in the Pro14 turns out to be a success? The article I posted earlier mentions a crowd of around 500 people turning up in South Africa for one of this past weekend's games. Hopefully that improves over time. 

Is seems like there is a lot of positive & negative opinions floating around the fractured rugby landscape lately... 

~ Positives ~

- Lions Series, & future possibilities - The continued rise & overall strength of the game in England - The continued growth & overall strength of the game in NZ - Rise of Ireland (Internationally), & the popularity of the game there - Rise in popularity of sevens rugby - Crowd figures / TV ratings for the Women's World Cup / Sevens.

~ Negatives ~  

- Concussion, CTE - Decline of South African rugby, its internal politics, etc  - Decline of French rugby (International Level) - The decline of Australian rugby, & the repercussions of a potential rouge league further fracturing the game in OZ  - Doubts over the potential success of the RWC in Japan. The first to be held outside of a traditional rugby stronghold -  Rugby culture & off field behaviour - The stagnation of Argentine rugby - The potential realignment of South African rugby with the North, & how it will affect both hemispheres. 

Interesting times ahead, no doubt.  

   

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Rugby Union: Tier 1/2 - European Cup Competitions:

 

Kick-off in October...

 

European_Rugby_Champions_Cup_Logo.png

Round 1 of the - 2017/18 European Rugby Champions Cup (Tier 1):

1yWCDyr.png

Full Season - Fixture List:

http://www.epcrugby.com/matchcentre/fixtures_champions_cup.php

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

European_Rugby_Challenge_Cup_Logo.png

Round 1 of the - 2017/18 European Rugby Challenge Cup (Tier 2):

 

2GlLx7o.png

Full Season - Fixture List:

http://www.epcrugby.com/matchcentre/fixtures_european_rugby_challenge_cup.php

Edited by Marc MacGyver

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LOL - The strangest pregame injury / injury report entry, EVER! 

 

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Scott Baldwin misses Ospreys game after being bitten by lion, as coach labels hooker 'pretty stupid' following incident in South Africa

 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/rugbyunion/article-4934870/Scott-Baldwin-misses-Ospreys-clash-lion-bite.html

 

 

Quote

 

Scott Baldwin is an early contender for the most bizarre injury of the year after being bitten by a lion in Bloemfontein. 

The Ospreys and Wales hooker was forced to miss his side's 44-25 thumping by the Cheetahs after an incident at Weltevreden Game Lodge.

Initially it was unclear why the forward was absent but Osprey's head coach Steve Tandy admitted it was not rugby related. 

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 

 

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_98137529_tomheathcote.jpg

Premiership Rugby: Impossible to draw conclusions from injury crisis

http://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/41498498

Quote

 

Premiership Rugby insists it is "impossible to draw conclusions" from the early-season injury crisis at certain top-flight clubs.

The likes of Harlequins, Bath, Wasps and Gloucester are all operating with severely depleted squads after five rounds of the domestic campaign.

~~~~~~~

As well as the game becoming ever more physical, club directors of rugby feel the law variations, introduced this season, could be a contributing factor to the long injury lists.

Wasps director of rugby Dai Young, who has around a third of his squad unavailable, believes there are "at least" 50 more contacts in the game this season, with the law changes designed to encourage attacking play.

 

Interesting... Too much rugby as well, perhaps? 

 

 

Edited by Marc MacGyver

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2017 - Rugby Championship - Highlights (Final Rounds ~ 5-6):

 

 

 

RND (5):

South Africa v Australia (Bloemfontein) ~ Good game overall. Even if it ended in a stalemate ~  Draw (27 / 27)

Argentina v New Zealand (Buenos Aires ) - NZ Win (36 / 10)

 

Final Round (6):

South Africa v New Zealand (Cape Town) ~ Classic Test Match between traditional rivals ~  NZ Win (25 / 24)

Argentina v Australia (Mendoza) - AUS Win (37 / 20)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Final Standings:
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http://www.allblacks.com/Fixtures

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Notes:

- New Zealand dominant again, & complete the tournament undefeated.

- Positive improvements from both Australia & South Africa. Both teams pushed the All Blacks to the brink in at least one Test Match.

- Argentina have lost their way since the 2015 RWC. 0-6 is a terrible result for Los Pumas in the Rugby Championship. Even the set-piece, a traditional strength of Argentine rugby has become a shambles. A major rethink is needed going forward.

 

 

Edited by Marc MacGyver

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2017/18 - Aviva Premiership - Best Tries, RND 6:

 

(Trinder Try -  Voted the best of the round)

 

 

 

Edited by Marc MacGyver

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European_Rugby_Champions_Cup_Logo.pngEuropean_Rugby_Challenge_Cup_Logo.png

2017/18 - Champions Cup / Challenge Cup - Results - Rnd 1/2:

*****

Champions Cup - Rnd 1/2:

 

 

 

(RND 1)

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(RND 2)

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Challenge Cup - Rnd 1/2:

 

 

 

(RND 1)

B6OzsjZ.png

(RND 2)

xpGCx9w.png

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Links - (Scores / Match Reports / Stats / Table / Video Highlights):

~ Champions Cup ~

http://www.epcrugby.com/matchcentre/fixtures_champions_cup.php?includeref=21924&season=2017-2018&round=1

~ Challenge Cup ~

http://www.epcrugby.com/matchcentre/fixtures_european_rugby_challenge_cup.php?includeref=22185&season=2017-2018&round=1

 

 

Edited by Marc MacGyver

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I forgot we had this thread.

Ive become a Sunwolves guy. I love watching this team. I need someone to get me back into the premiereship because I havent been interested in it in a couple of years.

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