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Old March 5th, 2010, 05:37 AM   #101
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Let's say there was no such thing as NA football and everyone from Canada and the USA instead had to play rugby. Do you think that would change the global positioning of the sport in the world?

I am not trying to undermine the current top rugby countries in the world, but all the top talent in NA goes towards football. I know at my University the stronger more athletic players where all in football and the rugby team was a niche sport.

I guess it is all a moot point, however it would be very interesting to see how the rugby power ranking would be if the United States and Canada put the players, money, and effort into rugby that they do into football.
If rugby was the main winter sport in the US, I would expect them to be the best in the world. They certainly should be given the vast population of the US and the vast resources that it pumps into its major sports.
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Old March 5th, 2010, 12:08 PM   #102
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@parcdesprinces: Unfortunately I dont think rugby is improving in popularity in Spain.

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Old March 6th, 2010, 03:29 PM   #103
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Originally Posted by TreeBeard View Post
Let's say there was no such thing as NA football and everyone from Canada and the USA instead had to play rugby. Do you think that would change the global positioning of the sport in the world?

I am not trying to undermine the current top rugby countries in the world, but all the top talent in NA goes towards football. I know at my University the stronger more athletic players where all in football and the rugby team was a niche sport.

I guess it is all a moot point, however it would be very interesting to see how the rugby power ranking would be if the United States and Canada put the players, money, and effort into rugby that they do into football.
USA would probably be good an be in the top 5 in the world but i still think the top 3 (new zealand, south africa and australia) would still beat them. i got no idea how canada would do but some of their NHL players are pretty tough and would go well. sometimes you dont have to be an freak athlete that runs a 4.3 in the 40 to be a good rugby player. a good example of this is new zealands captain richie mccaw. though i would love to see some nfl players in rugby such as adrian peterson. and vice versa players like greg inglis and jarryd hayne (NRL players) in the nfl
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Old March 7th, 2010, 07:02 PM   #104
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Millennium by a country mile. This one is a tenner and has everything a stadium should have. I love its "bowl" shape which isn't ruined by too many suites nor a business tier... Fans are very close to the pitch. The retractable roof is tech at its best. They nicely dealt with the constraint of adjacent Arms Park by preserving the north stand of former national stadium, which adds some unique feature to the whole. Last but not least, it is located right off Cardiff's centre! On top of my list, 10/10

Stade de France is a half-success IMO. First of all, I fail to see the necessity for having an athletics track since bidding for the Summer Olympics was a mistake (hope they learnt their lesson ) and we already had athletics-dedicated 20K-seater Charléty stadium in Paris for annual track-and-field events (this one was rebuilt in 1994, it was brand new at the time it was decided to build Stade de France!). Consequence of this, the shape is not optimal for pitch games.
Secondly, even though the place is nowadays waaaay better than what it used to be (i.e. a toxical industrial waste) it still lacks the appeal of a true urban centre and there is very little to do apart from having a drink in the two overpriced brasseries facing the gates, or having some dodgy hot dog off a street vendor
Thirdly, way too much seats are reserved for business and sponsors, whatever the game or the event is resulting in poor cheering. I know that's how it works now, and it may be the price to pay to fill a 80K, but still...
On the other hand the inside looks very elegant and well proportioned, architecturally it's stunning, access by PT is excellent (2 RER + 1 métro lines), and this part of town definitly needed a good facelift, but still, it could have been better for the reasons I explained above, hence the feeling of a half-success.

Never attended a game at any of the others, but overall we are very lucky to have this quality of stadia for the tournament.
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Old March 7th, 2010, 08:54 PM   #105
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It does not mean that rugby is popular in this country.For Women's Rugby World Cup you need just a few pitches.
My point was that these are countries where the popularity of rugby is growing, which is what I thought you were asking for...
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Old March 7th, 2010, 08:58 PM   #106
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If rugby was the main winter sport in the US, I would expect them to be the best in the world. They certainly should be given the vast population of the US and the vast resources that it pumps into its major sports.
If rugby had become the main winter sport in the USA before gridiron took hold, either rugby would be completely different the world over by now, or they'd have broken away and come up with their own unique sport.
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Old March 7th, 2010, 08:58 PM   #107
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You forgot Argentina..... Which became certainly one of the strongest nations in the world, even stronger than some of the Six Nations such as Scotland, Wales or Italy !

The IRB is even thinking to integrate them into the Tri-Nations or into the Six-Nations (because most of the "Pumas" play in European clubs, especially French ones).
See http://www.rugbyweek.com/news/article.asp?id=24723
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Old March 7th, 2010, 09:19 PM   #108
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In Italy there is a growing interest in Rugby, but it still lacks of fundings.
It is probably the fourth most followed game after Football, Basketball, Volleyball...but if you think that even Football faces problems about the development of new stadiums and it is the most funded game, I can't think to any serious plans about new projects involving Rugby.

Let's see the future, especially considering that two Italian teams from the Super10 - the major italian Rugby league - will move to the Celtic League.
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Old March 7th, 2010, 11:44 PM   #109
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In Italy there is a growing interest in Rugby, but it still lacks of fundings.
It is probably the fourth most followed game after Football, Basketball, Volleyball...but if you think that even Football faces problems about the development of new stadiums and it is the most funded game, I can't think to any serious plans about new projects involving Rugby.

Let's see the future, especially considering that two Italian teams from the Super10 - the major italian Rugby league - will move to the Celtic League.
volleyball?

a part from that, I think you're right, the rugby league in italy is not considered at all, the national team is quite important, but if you see the players they all play in france or england
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Old March 8th, 2010, 03:43 AM   #110
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If gridiron had not branched off, we'd be a league nation and thus not relevant to this thread.
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Old March 8th, 2010, 04:27 AM   #111
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Let's see the future, especially considering that two Italian teams from the Super10 - the major italian Rugby league - will move to the Celtic League.
Is that still on, i thought they couldn't come to an agreement
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Old March 8th, 2010, 12:52 PM   #112
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If gridiron had not branched off, we'd be a league nation and thus not relevant to this thread.
league as in rugby league ?
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Old March 9th, 2010, 03:00 AM   #113
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league as in rugby league ?
Yeah. If there was money to be made in sport, America would be doing it.
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Old March 9th, 2010, 07:09 AM   #114
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Six Nations 2010: France's Grand Slam charge can only be halted by massive upset

There are six lessons to be learned from this season's Six Nations Championship, which has two rounds to run before the final match in Paris on March 20.

By Mick Cleary
Published: 8:00AM GMT 02 Mar 2010

1 Un Grand Chelem à la Française?

Well, it will take an upset of considerable proportions for them not to be the grand champions. Two home games to come, against Italy, who have never beaten them, and England, who used to do so regularly – eight times in succession from 1989-95.

It was only 12 months ago that France came to Twickenham and were humiliated, trailing 34-0 after 42 minutes and eventually losing 34-10.

What has Marc Lièvremont done to turn around an ailing vessel? There has been greater consistency in selection and a change of captain from Lionel Nallet to the stylish, all-engaging flanker Thierry Dusautoir, while they now have a tip-top scrum and a balance between brain and brawn. A ninth Grand Slam, their fifth in 13 years, awaits.

2 Jonny Wilkinson's wounded pride is far preferable to an injured body.

No matter the critical stick that Wilkinson is taking, he is in a far better place than he has been for several years. This is one of his longest uninterrupted stretches of rugby since the 2003 World Cup.

Some of those who question his form now have a rose-tinted view of Wilkinson from that era. He was a source of commendable consistency in the England side but only sporadically achieved greatness in the manner that a Dan Carter has done for New Zealand.

Wilkinson has flaws, as he will be the first to tell you. Even his pile-driving defence is not what it was. Yet he tops the list of championship scorers with 38 points. England have not backed Toby Flood to come off the bench in their past two games. Wilkinson remains an important item for England.

3 Centres have to be big Bastareauds.

France's dreadlocked, one-time bad boy making good is the prototype modern centre: powerful as well as speedy.

With Mike Tindall only recently back in club action, England lack such a presence in midfield. Wales have Jamie Roberts and Ireland have Brian O'Driscoll. England's Mathew Tait knows that he has to impose himself more.

Mathieu Bastareaud still needs to show that he can be more than a battering ram. Mind you, his deft out-the-back pass to tee-up a try for Clément Poitrenaud against Ireland was classy stuff. If Bastareaud continues to develop he will be a fearsome specimen.

4 Ping-pong – the end is in sight.

Despite the sterility of England's match in Rome, it appears that the mindless end-to-end kicking game may be on the wane. The Super 14 has tilted the tiller in the right direction, while the Six Nations is showing the first glimpses of a more invigorating approach.

High-risk Wales are in the vanguard, with their kick ratio the lowest of the six teams at 40 per cent. Italy are the chief culprits on 56 per cent, followed by Ireland (52), then England (46). Ireland have made most line-breaks (12), followed by England and France on 11.

5 The southern hemisphere will be envious but not concerned.

Once again, the Six Nations has proven a drawcard. Measure its enduring attraction not by the sold-out stadiums alone, but by the many thousand of away fans. Murrayfield was packed with Frenchmen, the Millennium Stadium too. The backdrops have been vivid, the atmosphere raucous and the on-field action compelling in its many different forms.

The Tri-Nations cannot compete on the commercial front. Small wonder they have to think laterally to generate revenue. However, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa will not have trembled at the quality of play. Only France, and perhaps Ireland, look likely to compete for honours at the 2011 World Cup.

6 France dominate team of the tournament.

The French lead the way with several of their players, such as Poitrenaud, at fullback, and centre Yannick Jauzion in their best form for a good few years. Ireland wing Tommy Bowe is the most clinical finisher in Europe, while Shane Williams's trademark jinking run to the try line against France was a thing of beauty.
telegraph.co.uk
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Old March 9th, 2010, 07:15 AM   #115
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Old March 9th, 2010, 01:47 PM   #116
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Originally Posted by gho View Post
Is that still on, i thought they couldn't come to an agreement
It is official now:

Quote:
Two Italian Magners teams next season

The Magners League will be expanded to twelve teams next season to include two Italian "super sides", Celtic Rugby announced on Monday.

The Welsh, Irish and Scottish unions agreed unanimously that Benetton Treviso and Aironi Rugby should join the competition as part of a four-year agreement.

The decision ends a year-long study into the viability of expanding the competition.

"This is another massive step forward for the Magners League," said David Jordan, director of Celtic Rugby.

"As well as providing more fixtures for the teams already involved this will also bring both a major cash injection into the competition and greater exposure across Europe.

"Operationally it will present new challenges, as well as opportunities, but by introducing Italy into the Celtic fold it will also dramatically broaden the appeal of our product.

"It is anticipated that the Italian super clubs will be largely made up of Italian internationals of full, A and under-20 levels, with a sprinkling of top class overseas players set to provide further extra strength and spice to the tournament."

Aironi Rugby, which translates as Heron in English, will be be comprised of players from Viadana, Rugby Parma, Gran Parma, Colorno, Noceto, Reggio Emilia, Modena and Mantova.

"I am very pleased that, after months of intense negotiations, an agreement that will see two Italian teams join the Magners League at the start of next season has been reached," said Giancarlo Dondi, President of Federazione Italiana Rugby (FIR).

"I am sure that the Magners League will bring benefits to all Italian rugby and will have a positive impact on the competitiveness of our national team."

The move is the biggest boost for Italian rugby since the Azzurri's entry into the Six Nations in 2000.

The two Scottish, four Welsh and four Irish clubs have received financial guarantees from the Celtic board.


http://www.planetrugby.com/story/0,2...010504,00.html
Benetton Treviso and Aironi Parma.
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Old March 9th, 2010, 01:58 PM   #117
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Yeah. If there was money to be made in sport, America would be doing it.
back up a sec. you do realise there are two types of rugby. rugby league and rugby union (the more popular one) im not taking about a rugby league as in a competition but as the sport of rugby league itself
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Old March 9th, 2010, 04:06 PM   #118
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I think what he is trying to say is that if Walter camp and friends had not developed additional rules for the sport and just played rugby as prescribed by the IRB that when the split occured they (the yanks) would've sided with the northern union instead of with amatuer RFU, because "money is the american way".

Then again with american money backing a split I doubt there would've been one, a compromise similar to what hap.pened in football would surely have been found.

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Old March 9th, 2010, 04:33 PM   #119
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back up a sec. you do realise there are two types of rugby. rugby league and rugby union (the more popular one) im not taking about a rugby league as in a competition but as the sport of rugby league itself

We are playing both kinds here in the USA. The Rugby league is played mainly on the eastern seaboard ( DC area to New England ) and the US national team is named the Tomahawks. There is a team in Jacksonville, Florida also.
Rugby union is played all over the country and the main competition is the Rugby Super league which is struggly financially right now. Two of the greatest teams in the US rugby history have left the competition. We are still amateurs and as players we pay our own airfaire and hotels when we travel. It takes a lot of dedication and a great love for the game to play in the RSL. We train in the evening after work and have no facilities even for changing . My garage is my weight room and high school stadium behind my house is where I run everyday. On game days we draw maybe 400 to 500 spectators including our families and dogs. We play and train in a public park. This year whe have the luxury of two portables bathrooms on matchday. We grill hot dogs and burgers and sell beers and wine on the side of the pitch. This is not the six nations but we play the game with the same pride... For me it is on last season in the sun until I hung these boots ... I am the oldest player in the league.
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Old March 9th, 2010, 08:31 PM   #120
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back up a sec. you do realise there are two types of rugby. rugby league and rugby union (the more popular one) im not taking about a rugby league as in a competition but as the sport of rugby league itself
I'm not an idiot, sir.
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I think what he is trying to say is that if Walter camp and friends had not developed additional rules for the sport and just played rugby as prescribed by the IRB that when the split occured they (the yanks) would've sided with the northern union instead of with amatuer RFU, because "money is the american way".
Exactly what I mean.
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