By Paul Montague and Chris Davison
With no rugby on, there’s been plenty of conjecture swirling about on the future of Super Rugby ( it should be binned it as it exists now), and also on whether most of the current All Blacks will play in the national provincial championship, the NPC, in a few months.
After traitorously writing a small history of some significant Ranfurly Shield moments for another site, a called Chris Davison made contact with a couple of long, very detailed emails with his thoughts on where the future of professional rugby in this country could go.
Everything he stated was so well-thought out and considered; I thought I owed it to him to give his ideas more coverage.
There are two parts to the following- first are some verbatim excerpts of what Chris wrote. Secondly, there are a couple of spreadsheets he devised: The first is how an annual calendar could look within a four-yearly domestic and international cycle. The second spreadsheet is how an All Blacks World Cup calendar cycle might look. Cheers for your efforts, Chris. I believe that there’s plenty you have submitted that has merit and gives lots of food for thought. We just somehow need to get NZR to stop being so (expletive deleted) tone-deaf. Especially their chairman- no, not Mark Robinson- he actually might be the final hope.
*Was thinking about switching Super Rugby to a Colts competition and it occurred to me that each NZ franchise is based in a University town. I wonder if a connection could be made there for ‘sponsorship for scholarships’ type deals. Or even rebrand/relaunch Super Rugby as a stand-alone Women’s competition between professional teams from NZ and Australia.
The regular All Blacks season should include no rugby championship, but rather…
*two Bledisloe Cup games every season
*a 3 match Springboks series every second year (timed to avoid world cup years, the empty year between would be used for Lions Tours or a tour to/from another nation… Japan/Argentina/Namibia/Canada/USA)
*host one Northern Hemisphere tour in NZ (3 match plus midweek games)
*one ABs tour to the Northern Hemisphere including midweek games (3 match series against one nation)
*host one of the Pacific Island nations each year (1 test, plus tour games against provincial sides)
To my calculations that leaves time for 2 extra games a year which could be used for exhibition games (Barbarians, Away game to a Pacific nation, or a combined Pacific Island (Lions style team) series ) etc.
I’d like to think that some of Chris’s ideas can gain a bit of traction. Consider a re-tweet if you think Chris’s plans have merit/validity. And Chris’s twitter is @Chris51249995.
Finally, on another note entirely, was a shame to see the demise of Sky Sport News, hosted by Goran Palladin and Kate King. Was a really worthwhile production, and its surly Twitter detractors had obviously never watched it properly, judging by some comments that were made.
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