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In the cold light of day 
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Post In the cold light of day
Two Irish teams, one Welsh team, one French team and no English teams in the last four.
What does that say about the state of rugby in England and to a lesser state in France?
We might as well throw in the 6N result as well.
1. Ireland
2. Wales
3. Scotland
4. France
5. England
6. Who cares?
Guinness Pro 14, French Top 14 or English Premier League. Which is the top performing league?


Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:34 pm
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
Still behind New Zealand

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Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:43 pm
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
simondavis wrote:
Still behind New Zealand

Quite :D
The performance of the Guinness Pro 14 will improve if SA gives us better teams to compete against next year.
The Kings were a total failure but Cheetahs were not bad seeing as they are fielding three teams in three different competitions.
However, they can and have mixed and matched players because those three competitions to a certain extent only partially overlap each other and are not run concurrently with each other.
It is still a big ask of the Cheetahs and, in the circumstances, they have performed reasonably well.
Contrary to opinion, the Italian sides have added rather than subtracted from the competition by allowing sides to rest top players. This was also the case with the Kings. Giving the younger players the very necessary exposure which they would not have otherwise enjoyed.


Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:43 pm
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
BigRed wrote:
Two Irish teams, one Welsh team, one French team and no English teams in the last four.
What does that say about the state of rugby in England and to a lesser state in France?
We might as well throw in the 6N result as well.
1. Ireland
2. Wales
3. Scotland
4. France
5. England
6. Who cares?
Guinness Pro 14, French Top 14 or English Premier League. Which is the top performing league?


In a bad way at the moment but only last year an English team won the European champions cup after we were widely dismissed, England won the 6N after being dismissed and England equalled the world record winning streak. The year before people were talking about the failure of the Pro 12 to get a single team into the European champions knock out stages and England got a grand slam. 2017 Wales came 5th in the 6N, 2013 Ireland came 5th.

All we can say is that English rugby is going through a bad period, which matches the pattern of what happens during Lions tour years, the team with the players who play the most suffers in the following year. At the moment the top performing league is the Pro 14, who also play the most attractive rugby but I wouldn't attempt to make any broad claims about the state of national or club rugby based on 1 year, especially when it has changed so drastically in 1 year.

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Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:51 pm
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
Troron wrote:
BigRed wrote:
Two Irish teams, one Welsh team, one French team and no English teams in the last four.
What does that say about the state of rugby in England and to a lesser state in France?
We might as well throw in the 6N result as well.
1. Ireland
2. Wales
3. Scotland
4. France
5. England
6. Who cares?
Guinness Pro 14, French Top 14 or English Premier League. Which is the top performing league?


In a bad way at the moment but only last year an English team won the European champions cup after we were widely dismissed, England won the 6N after being dismissed and England equalled the world record winning streak. The year before people were talking about the failure of the Pro 12 to get a single team into the European champions knock out stages and England got a grand slam. 2017 Wales came 5th in the 6N, 2013 Ireland came 5th.

All we can say is that English rugby is going through a bad period, which matches the pattern of what happens during Lions tour years, the team with the players who play the most suffers in the following year. At the moment the top performing league is the Pro 14, who also play the most attractive rugby but I wouldn't attempt to make any broad claims about the state of national or club rugby based on 1 year, especially when it has changed so drastically in 1 year.

Fair enough! :D
A number of Wales players who featured in the Lions tour have altogether been sidelined or who have not performed well. I suppose that goes for the England team as well.


Mon Apr 02, 2018 7:23 am
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
BigRed wrote:
simondavis wrote:
Still behind New Zealand

Quite :D

The performance of the Guinness Pro 14 will improve if SA gives us better teams to compete against next year.
The Kings were a total failure but Cheetahs were not bad seeing as they are fielding three teams in three different competitions.
However, they can and have mixed and matched players because those three competitions to a certain extent only partially overlap each other and are not run concurrently with each other.
It is still a big ask of the Cheetahs and, in the circumstances, they have performed reasonably well.
Contrary to opinion, the Italian sides have added rather than subtracted from the competition by allowing sides to rest top players. This was also the case with the Kings. Giving the younger players the very necessary exposure which they would not have otherwise enjoyed.


This is, imo, optimistic short and long term.

If and when SA decide to migrate to N Hemp it is likely that it will be more comprehensively adopted.

The EPCR have already broached negotiations (it has been denied) ...Imo this will be the route and there will probably be a Confrence like system?

The franglais will enter with their clout and will take advantage of this growth.

Ref Pro 14 supremacy we heard a similar position last Season and it ended in a french/English final. Fra had 4 teams in the Qs but only one succeeded to semis. Perhaps a Winner?

I believe that you have to look deeper than EPCR later qualification to make sweeping statements about Pro14 strength? The Irish are very strong, Wales have done better this year but the non Irish contingent have a poor record. The Challenge Cup is a farce and is only paid very token respect. Yes, the Italians seem to be improving but there's a different between improving and being truly competitive. Really it's all about Ireland?

Look deeper and in the instance of Aviva and Top14 there are distinct problems, The french problems are well described in the french section, Eng have some similar problems especially Player resilience. Eng bought a front man in Jones and lost an architect in Lancaster who thrives at Leinster :D :D (couldn't resist that one).

Using the current 6Ns as an example is bit of a stretch ...other than Ireland it was largely ANO...

There have been other statements Big Red or Naj (?) posted yesterday of Crisis at Clermont ... overstated when one looks behind the scenes.

Look at the support levels and financing of Aviva and Top14 Clubs ... if and when the scope of Interntionl Club Rugby increases it will be a different kettle of fish ...

NZ pre emptively are already actively involved in offsetting the financial implications and their administration leads by a country mile. The Pro14 teams don't.

look at e.g Racing integrated into the business, wonderful facilities, succeeding on the pitch and leading in increasing employment of french players ..

Short termism is death.

Congratulation Ireland and Pro14 teams where Scarlets also deserve a significant mention but please don't gloat on a relatively false assumption of general excellence and long term success.

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Mon Apr 02, 2018 8:47 am
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
Sean TBQH I think your closing statement is being a little disingenuous on your part.
Quote:
Congratulation Ireland and Pro14 teams where Scarlets also deserve a significant mention but please don't gloat on a relatively false assumption of general excellence and long-term success.


Most of what you say makes sense but you have failed to recognise that Wales is starting to build up a sizeable player base. Something even Mr Edwards (the other Sean so we don't get mixed up) remarked about, just recently. He is on record that there are now many more players to choose from in most positions. Something he hasn't experienced in Wales before.
So I think you should reconsider the "short-term" remark.
I think Wales is building up very nicely for the long term.
I know that there are those (rugby pundits) who will disagree with me but do not get me wrong I am not a lover of Wendy Ball.
The advent of Swansea making the grade in the EPL now hopefully Cardiff doing the same. This has a two-fold benefit not only for Wendy Ball but for rugby and the economics of the regions.
Money has been pouring into Wales, not only from the initial £94m on making the EPL but also from the huge following of Premier League Football. This has also had the effect of getting more youngsters into a sport and off the roads. Many budding football players will and do flit from one discipline to another. A good grounding in football skills will definitely help the youngsters who see their future in rugby rather than WB.
I think rugby pundits must take a more pragmatic look at the benefits of the rise in football in South Wales. It has been good for us in the Wales rugby world.
If Cardiff gets into the EPL they will get a windfall of £94m plus a much bigger revenue from the gates. This has got to be a huge plus for the economics of South Wales. Bring it on. :D


Mon Apr 02, 2018 11:46 am
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
BigRed wrote:
Sean TBQH I think your closing statement is being a little disingenuous on your part.
Quote:
Congratulation Ireland and Pro14 teams where Scarlets also deserve a significant mention but please don't gloat on a relatively false assumption of general excellence and long-term success.


Most of what you say makes sense but you have failed to recognise that Wales is starting to build up a sizeable player base. Something even Mr Edwards (the other Sean so we don't get mixed up) remarked about, just recently. He is on record that there are now many more players to choose from in most positions. Something he hasn't experienced in Wales before.
So I think you should reconsider the "short-term" remark.
I think Wales is building up very nicely for the long term.
I know that there are those (rugby pundits) who will disagree with me but do not get me wrong I am not a lover of Wendy Ball.
The advent of Swansea making the grade in the EPL now hopefully Cardiff doing the same. This has a two-fold benefit not only for Wendy Ball but for rugby and the economics of the regions.
Money has been pouring into Wales, not only from the initial £94m on making the EPL but also from the huge following of Premier League Football. This has also had the effect of getting more youngsters into a sport and off the roads. Many budding football players will and do flit from one discipline to another. A good grounding in football skills will definitely help the youngsters who see their future in rugby rather than WB.
I think rugby pundits must take a more pragmatic look at the benefits of the rise in football in South Wales. It has been good for us in the Wales rugby world.


Fair comment, ref progress ... are the Regions ...

When I talk about futures it relates to affordable and the NZ comment and their reaction ....etc

As for the financials .. the franglais are taking more and there's less Performance money .. no longer 15% of allocation revenue and the franglais have a bigger shareout after the EPCR Club Governance agreement.

BR .. you really have to dig deeper..

The franglais Junior level could well be dominant with more nous and commitment ...

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Mon Apr 02, 2018 11:53 am
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
Troron wrote:
BigRed wrote:
Two Irish teams, one Welsh team, one French team and no English teams in the last four.
What does that say about the state of rugby in England and to a lesser state in France?
We might as well throw in the 6N result as well.
1. Ireland
2. Wales
3. Scotland
4. France
5. England
6. Who cares?
Guinness Pro 14, French Top 14 or English Premier League. Which is the top performing league?


In a bad way at the moment but only last year an English team won the European champions cup after we were widely dismissed, England won the 6N after being dismissed and England equalled the world record winning streak. The year before people were talking about the failure of the Pro 12 to get a single team into the European champions knock out stages and England got a grand slam. 2017 Wales came 5th in the 6N, 2013 Ireland came 5th.

All we can say is that English rugby is going through a bad period, which matches the pattern of what happens during Lions tour years, the team with the players who play the most suffers in the following year. At the moment the top performing league is the Pro 14, who also play the most attractive rugby but I wouldn't attempt to make any broad claims about the state of national or club rugby based on 1 year, especially when it has changed so drastically in 1 year.


I agree that, to a large extent, success at either club or country level is mostly fleeting and cyclical. Even so, there is a double standard where, if Pro 14 teams do badly in Europe (as was especially the case two seasons ago), then people say it is because the low quality of the league leaves their players undercooked and ill-prepared to 'step up', but if either AP or Top 14 teams do badly in Europe, then people say it is because the players are overtired from their domestic leagues! It should also be said that the lack of success of Welsh teams most seasons in Europe - even while Wales were winning the 6N and reached a World Cup semi-final - means we are not really in much of a position to gloat about this season's no-show from English teams.


Mon Apr 02, 2018 2:19 pm
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
Tony Panties wrote:
BigRed wrote:
Sean TBQH I think your closing statement is being a little disingenuous on your part.
Quote:
Congratulation Ireland and Pro14 teams where Scarlets also deserve a significant mention but please don't gloat on a relatively false assumption of general excellence and long-term success.


Most of what you say makes sense but you have failed to recognise that Wales is starting to build up a sizeable player base. Something even Mr Edwards (the other Sean so we don't get mixed up) remarked about, just recently. He is on record that there are now many more players to choose from in most positions. Something he hasn't experienced in Wales before.
So I think you should reconsider the "short-term" remark.
I think Wales is building up very nicely for the long term.
I know that there are those (rugby pundits) who will disagree with me but do not get me wrong I am not a lover of Wendy Ball.
The advent of Swansea making the grade in the EPL now hopefully Cardiff doing the same. This has a two-fold benefit not only for Wendy Ball but for rugby and the economics of the regions.
Money has been pouring into Wales, not only from the initial £94m on making the EPL but also from the huge following of Premier League Football. This has also had the effect of getting more youngsters into a sport and off the roads. Many budding football players will and do flit from one discipline to another. A good grounding in football skills will definitely help the youngsters who see their future in rugby rather than WB.
I think rugby pundits must take a more pragmatic look at the benefits of the rise in football in South Wales. It has been good for us in the Wales rugby world.


Fair comment, ref progress ... are the Regions ...

When I talk about futures it relates to affordable and the NZ comment and their reaction ....etc

As for the financials .. the franglais are taking more and there's less Performance money .. no longer 15% of allocation revenue and the franglais have a bigger shareout after the EPCR Club Governance agreement.

BR .. you really have to dig deeper..

The franglais Junior level could well be dominant with more nous and commitment ...

Sean, there is no doubt that we are the poor (very poor) relations of the Franglais (a term I had to look up). :D
We are also the poor relations of Irish rugby, it's just that we are a very small nation in comparison.
Even New Zealand has about 50% more people than Wales, but have been dipping into the resources of the South Sea Islanders for generations. Ireland, Eire and Northern Ireland, has nearly double the population of Wales.
Be that as it may, Wales definitely punches above its weight.
I noticed you didn't comment about the money that is pouring into South Wales from the Wendy Ball and how this IMHO has already had an influence on the number of youngsters taking up a sport, not only WB but in rugby as well.
This can only be good longterm for Wales rugby. I'm still hoping that Cardiff can make the move into the EPL this year as well.
There is another aspect and that is the development of the game in North Wales. I think it has been a brilliant move to have the U20 home games in North Wales. It is having a positive effect on our depth. I'd like to see this taken a bit further by the regions having to play some of their home games in North Wales and places like Aberystwyth.


Mon Apr 02, 2018 2:21 pm
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
Can we draw any conclusions from one season?

Last year and the year before, The Saracens won it, before that Toulon won it three times in a row.

So only two teams have won it for the last five years. Both French and English.

Furthermore, Liam Williams was a big loss to the Scarlets and a big gain for the Saracens - surely the latter has therefore become stronger at the expense of the former?


The Scarlets are improving but still need to do more to prove they are great.


Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:18 am
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Post Re: In the cold light of day
BigRed wrote:
Tony Panties wrote:
BigRed wrote:
Sean TBQH I think your closing statement is being a little disingenuous on your part.
Quote:
Congratulation Ireland and Pro14 teams where Scarlets also deserve a significant mention but please don't gloat on a relatively false assumption of general excellence and long-term success.


Most of what you say makes sense but you have failed to recognise that Wales is starting to build up a sizeable player base. Something even Mr Edwards (the other Sean so we don't get mixed up) remarked about, just recently. He is on record that there are now many more players to choose from in most positions. Something he hasn't experienced in Wales before.
So I think you should reconsider the "short-term" remark.
I think Wales is building up very nicely for the long term.
I know that there are those (rugby pundits) who will disagree with me but do not get me wrong I am not a lover of Wendy Ball.
The advent of Swansea making the grade in the EPL now hopefully Cardiff doing the same. This has a two-fold benefit not only for Wendy Ball but for rugby and the economics of the regions.
Money has been pouring into Wales, not only from the initial £94m on making the EPL but also from the huge following of Premier League Football. This has also had the effect of getting more youngsters into a sport and off the roads. Many budding football players will and do flit from one discipline to another. A good grounding in football skills will definitely help the youngsters who see their future in rugby rather than WB.
I think rugby pundits must take a more pragmatic look at the benefits of the rise in football in South Wales. It has been good for us in the Wales rugby world.


Fair comment, ref progress ... are the Regions ...

When I talk about futures it relates to affordable and the NZ comment and their reaction ....etc

As for the financials .. the franglais are taking more and there's less Performance money .. no longer 15% of allocation revenue and the franglais have a bigger shareout after the EPCR Club Governance agreement.

BR .. you really have to dig deeper..

The franglais Junior level could well be dominant with more nous and commitment ...

Sean, there is no doubt that we are the poor (very poor) relations of the Franglais (a term I had to look up). :D
We are also the poor relations of Irish rugby, it's just that we are a very small nation in comparison.
Even New Zealand has about 50% more people than Wales, but have been dipping into the resources of the South Sea Islanders for generations. Ireland, Eire and Northern Ireland, has nearly double the population of Wales.

Be that as it may, Wales definitely punches above its weight.
I noticed you didn't comment about the money that is pouring into South Wales from the Wendy Ball and how this IMHO has already had an influence on the number of youngsters taking up a sport, not only WB but in rugby as well.
This can only be good longterm for Wales rugby. I'm still hoping that Cardiff can make the move into the EPL this year as well.
There is another aspect and that is the development of the game in North Wales. I think it has been a brilliant move to have the U20 home games in North Wales. It is having a positive effect on our depth. I'd like to see this taken a bit further by the regions having to play some of their home games in North Wales and places like Aberystwyth.


The big difference between Wales and Ireland is that GAA is the dominate sport of the parishes in Ireland so we may look to have twice Wales population but a prime chunk of athletic talent is creamed off by the GAA.

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Thu Apr 05, 2018 3:46 pm
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