Benn Robinson Bell Announced for NRC NSW Teams - Green and Gold Rugby
National Rugby Championship

Benn Robinson Bell Announced for NRC NSW Teams

Benn Robinson Bell Announced for NRC NSW Teams

After the success with getting the Horan-Little Shield started for the NRC in 2015, the Green & Gold Rugby boffins went back to the lab to cook up some more ideas (no, not Walter White style – think more “Doc” Brown with the DeLorean). After they didn’t work out, and with the 2016 season kick off looming, they had it! Never to be the ones to let the Queenslanders have it all their own way with their Andy Purcell Cup, the boffins conceived a trophy to be competed for by NSW sides in the NRC. Of course it had to be better than whatever the Queenslanders had, so it’s competed for by 3 sides!!! Something extra for bragging rights between the teams, and to give some extra edge to NSW derbies. We all love the extra niggle of a derby.

After getting a resounding reception from the NRC teams (or at least their social media managers on Twitter), the boffins then got the chance to pitch the concept to head office – Tah Central. Andrew Hore, CEO of Waratahs Rugby, kindly took the time to listen to the ramblings of some wide eyed rugby fanatics. Nodding sagely and staying close to the door. Result? Well let’s just say Andrew didn’t quite stage a re-enactment of a Tom Cruise interview with Oprah (he’s a Kiwi after all), but he liked it.

And who to name the trophy after? (lights dim, choir in background …) Benn Robinson!!! Boffins central decided the Trophy should be named after someone who bled sky blue. Obviously. After quite a bit of discussion, crying, headlocks and tantrums, and Andrew playing peacemaker, we had a decision. With 155 NSW caps as well as 72 Wallaby caps, being a loyal club man for Eastwood in the Shute Shield, playing for the Rams in the ARC and NRC, and being a proud Dural junior, Benn Robinson was our man. Benn’s rugby career being cruelly cut short by injury this year also meant he was fresh in our minds as a player we’d remember for years to come, and deserved to be remembered. If seeing replays of the Cat’s legs pumping running the ball up doesn’t bring a tear to your eye, you must be a back.

Andrew even got his chance to contribute – who says we Green & & Gold boffins have all the good ideas? (Eh? Eh? Oh!) This would be no ordinary trophy, no sir. The trophy would in fact be a Bell that the victors will be able to ring, announcing their victory as the best NSW team in the NRC that year. The Bell ties in with NSW being the agricultural heart and soul of Australia (Queensland? Bananas mate, bananas!), as well as Benn playing for the Rams with their agricultural motif (that’s posh for logo). Dural was also virtually semi rural up until about the time Benn started running around in juniors too. Suggestions it also provides a warning to the canteen and bar that the victors are approaching will be vigorously agreed with.

Unfortunately this didn’t happen in time for kick off for the season, but we are able to announce it jointly with Waratahs Rugby in time for Round 7, which features the Western Sydney Rams hosting the NSW Country Eagles at Concord Oval, in a game that will determine who wins the Bell!!

Tahs

Who will be the first to ring the Bell?

How will it work?

The three NSW teams playing each other will earn points in the usual way during the regular season, counting towards winning the Benn Robinson Bell. Like a conference within the NRC, only more important.  With only three teams, that means three games will count towards it.

By way of example, if the first 2 seasons of the NRC had featured the Bell, they would have looked like this:

2014

 

2015

So the Eagles would have won both years had the Bell been up for grabs, and in 2015 despite the Stars finishing higher and making the finals. In both years the Rays would finished bottom of the log for the Bell, despite both years not being the bottom placed NSW team overall.

Where do we stand this year? The NSW derbies so far have been:

Round 1: Sydney Rays 50 defeated the Western Sydney Rams 30 (Match Report)

Round 4: NSW Country Eagles 36 defeated the Sydney Rays 16 (Match Report)

So heading into Round 7, the BRB table looks like this.

2016

 

The NRC tiebreakers (we are reliably informed) are:

  1.  points for and against
  2. result between the two teams, and
  3. most tries scored for the competition What it means for this weekend:

So the Bell is well and truly up for grabs with the winner not known until the end of the Rams v Eagles game this weekend, with even the Rays still a mathematical chance if the Rams win the right way. If only the Rays had beaten the Eagles in Round 4 ….

So there you have it. Another awesome idea from Green & Gold Rugby snuck past those in charge and released into the outside world! Gotta love this game!

We must thank Waratah Rugby for getting behind this initiative, one that both organisations believe can help drive further interest and passion in the NRC. It’s been noticeable how much more engaged Waratah Rugby has been in the NRC this year and this is just another example of it.

Bell 1

The Benn Robinson Bell

 

  • Saus

    Perfectly apt award for you NSW Bell ends ;-) (all said in Red’s jest guys)

  • Bay35Pablo

    Kudos to Andrew Hore at Tah Central too. He helped make this concept reality. Seems like the right man to take charge at Tahs. Also great work from Lauren DeGioia, Team Media Manager at the Tahs.
    Shout out to Rugby Reg and Matt Rowley, my fellow boffins. I think Reg went above and beyond given he’s a Queenslander, so this was like helping the enemy …. :)
    And Benn for selling us the naming rights ….

  • Nicholas Wasiliev

    Awww this is great! As a New South Welshman who asked for something like this in an article earlier this year, its great to see you guys pull this together! And a bell is actually a pretty awesome idea for a trophy. Looking forward to seeing who rings it at the match tomorrow at Concord Oval!

    • Bay35Pablo

      Credit to Andrew for that. We were just think old school trophy you could pour beers into.
      We were initially wary of the bell, as it was a bit mooloo (bloody Kiwis … :) ), but we warmed to it. Was different, which was good. Not just another mug.

      • Nicholas Wasiliev

        Yeah, I like how different it is. The Andy Purcell Cup is awesome, but we’ve seen cups a hundred times before. I think it will work really well. And you can still drink from a bell can’t you? ;)

        • Bay35Pablo

          I think the ringer might whack your nose while skolling, which isn’t optimal.

        • SuckerForRed

          Add degree of difficulty. :-D

        • Nicholas Wasiliev

          Makes for a more entertaining drinking experience. Want to see whoever wins it tomorrow give it a go! Can we force Bennie Robinson to have a swig? ;)

        • Bay35Pablo

          He’s overseas. Boo-urns.

    • SuckerForRed

      I am impressed that there is still places out there that make old skool bells. Or is this “recycled”?

      • Bay35Pablo

        Unlike the Horan-Little Trophy, I understand this was freshly stolen from Rusty Crowe who was wandering by. There was some old writing on it that had to be removed, but no loss … :)

  • SuckerForRed

    “If seeing replays of the Cat’s legs pumping running the ball up doesn’t bring a tear to your eye, you must be a back.”
    Or a Queenslander…….. :-)

    All jokes aside – great initiative. Oh why can’t the NRC be a complete home & away comp. Would make stuff like this easier too…..

  • MM

    Great work everyone. I hope Fat Cat can retire to a life of luxury on the proceeds of the naming rights.

    • Bay35Pablo

      If retirement is covered by the cost of a flat white takeaway (not sit down), then yes.
      Plus all the love involved ….

      • jamie

        Not even a slab? Mate..

  • Farthing

    This should be the award for winning the entire thing. Who even knows what the NRC winners get? Some soulless trophy? A cup with a sponsors name on it? Just nonsense. Let the nation compete for the bell.

    • RugbyReg

      Brisbane City fans know what the NRC winners get.

      I wouldn’t criticize Buildcorp for having their name on the trophy either – they are brilliant supporters of the game at the grassroots. Not to get access to glitzy boxes at test matches – but to support grassroots rugby (NRC, club rugby, womens rugby). They are a big factor as to why this competition is still going.

      And why does this Bell have more soul than the existing trophy?

      You sound like just another critic who can find something to take potshots at in any situation.

      • Farthing

        Dude obviously I’m being ridiculous. Chill. No need to do a character assessment based on an Internet post.
        But the bell is awesome and way more iconic than a trophy. It has soul cause it’s unique and it’s named after a loved player who had to retire early so it has a story behind it.
        But of course it’s never gonna happen. Godspeed NRC.

        • RugbyReg

          obviously…

        • Farthing

          Yes obviously. How seriously is one meant to take a bell?
          You sound like one them self important types who likes to talk down to strangers on the Internet.

    • Bay35Pablo

      The toast rack?!?!!?!? Iconic!!! Up there with the A League dunny seat for memorable trophies. Two mungos covered in mud having a hug? Bah!!

  • Lindommer

    “… in time for
    Round 7, which features the Western Sydney Rams hosting the NSW Country
    Eagles at Pittwater Park…”

    I’ll be at Concord Oval tomorrow, hope no one turns up to Pittwater.

    • Bay35Pablo

      Article tweaked when we found out what official NRC tiebreakers were …. as they weren’t on the web site ….

  • Brett McKay

    Great work gang, and great to see the Waratahs getting behind the NRC this year. NSW-backing was what the comp desperately needed, and will be key to future growth and success. Anything that adds to what is already a good competition can only help the wider acceptance…

  • Brett McKay

    For info, too Pablo and co, the NRC tie breaker method for teams on equal competition points is:
    1. points for and against
    2. result between the two teams, and
    3. most tries scored for the competition.

    • Bay35Pablo

      Murphy’s law dictated that the NRC would be doing it differently. I should have just asked you as our inside man ….

      • Brett McKay

        I only just confirmed it myself this week!

        • Bay35Pablo

          G&GR – asking the questions that need asking.

  • Jagman

    Well done! Love the Bell. If I could make one minor critic it would be the over formulated way of determining who wins. My suggestion would be, once you have a winner, just make it on total wins, it can only be a draw if all 3 teams win once, so in that case the previous winner retains it, like the Bledisloe, much easier to follow and no calculator needed.

    • Bay35Pablo

      It’s as formulated as qualifying for the finals when tied on points.
      Given it’s only 3 teams and thus 3 games, there is always the chance each team wins one game and are tied. Awarding it jointly would cheapen it. This way teams can be trying hard to win by enough or get just the right result to pip the other 2 and grab the Bell.
      Extra niggle delivered!!!!

      • Jagman

        Not too concerned either way, just giving my two cents. A Bledisloeic formula would make it harder to win from the current holder thus giving it more value.

        • Bay35Pablo

          Resets each year. We thought about Horan-Little/Ranfurly challenge format, but would mean wasn’t being played for each game, and we wanted each game to potentially mean something extra because the Bell was up for grabs.

  • Tomthusiasm

    For some reason I’m picturing a middle aged woman ringing this bell and a shortly after a large cat appears at her doorstep ready to tuck into a lavish meal of roast chicken.

    • Bay35Pablo

      The Fat Cat. Mission Accomplished ….

      • Tomthusiasm

        Spirit animal

  • Bay35Pablo

    I think I teared up a little when I heard the Bell rung ….

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@Bay35Pablo

Mad raving fan all all things rugby, but mainly Waratahs and Wallabies. Ravings may occasionally make sense or resemble reality.

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