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Selection politics and bias, Gold Squads unfairness etc.

Discussion in 'Schoolboy Rugby' started by NorthernSon, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. NorthernSon

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    The first posts in this thread have been taken from the NSW Schools thread. If last year is any benchmark, the subject will be just as interesting to Queensland posters. Please don't mix up NSW Schools and Queensland Schools matters with the subject of this thread as it can tend to choke the Schools' threads.

    If you think that NTS and rugby politics is so closely linked to a NSW Schools or Qld. Schools matter as not to be separable - fine, but put those posts in this thread not the others. As with the scholarship "Sticky" thread, we are separating this topic to see if things flow better. Let's see.

    Thank you. Lee Grant


    I Think you will find that Joeys decreased representation in NSW Schools is linked not to so much player ability but the schools policy of not openly releasing players to participate regualrly in the ARU's NTS squad and hence a lot of quality boys not appearing on Manu's short list that NSW selectors are given to work from.

    David Hickey (Joeys 2009) and (University of Sydney 1st Grade in 2011) is a prime example of a lad missing from Manu's short list and hence missing out at the expense of some others who were NSW Schools bench players in 2009 (Connor and Broome) and not near in the same league as Hickey.

    Matt Hulme ( NSW Schools u/16 2009, Joeys 1st XV 2010, NSW Opens 2010, Australia A 2010) and Cam Bond (Joeys 1st XV 2009/10, NSW Schools Captain u/16 2009) were known to have been provided some very restricted participation opportunities with NTS and hence appeared on the shortlist.

    Michael Wells (Riverview 1st xv 2010) elevation in 2010 from GPS 3rds to Australian Schools another fine example of Manu's influence on elevating his chosen ones and Will Miller (Scots 1st XV in 2011) who didnt do a great deal for Scots in 2010 will likely appear and edge out other deserving back rowers from GPS, CAS, CCC, CHS or Country regions through the same shortlist.

    It is reality and unless Joeys change their approach to NTS and the ARU, the honour board for Aussie Schools will remain untouched.
  2. the beast

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    too much politics involved in school rugby and too many players are selected on reputations as 13 year olds. About time the NSW schools side was solely selected on current form.
    Prima Donna, footy-kid and Drew like this.
  3. Spewn Alex Ross (28)

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    Northern S and the Beast

    At last some quality comments on GAGR about the nonsense of schoolboy selections. Just watch the reaction.
    Slash likes this.
  4. lily Vay Wilson (31)

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    Politics = The parent who dropped their kiddy off to play rugby at the under 6 level and wondered why he wasn't playing flyhalf and also pampered the child till the age of 17. It all works out. If your child is good enough his talent will shine through.
    Politcs is the most over used term in schoolboy rugby. I have few more words for you , Not good enough.
    RugbyInterest likes this.
  5. Spewn Alex Ross (28)

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    Very true. But the question is when not good enough. There is no age limit but the current pathways model suggests only a few are any good based on all manner of irrelevancies and the rest have to do it the hard way.
    holmsinator likes this.
  6. Malcsy Sydney Middleton (9)

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    Politics = So and so's dad is involved at whatever level. next stage is so and so goes to x school. The reality is, truly outstanding kids, those truly head and shoulders above the rest will indeed shine through. The rest who make it through the system will fit into one of or both of the first two categories. That's the truth, and it's not just a rugby phenomenon.
  7. Spewn Alex Ross (28)

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    Certainly isn't. It happens in every girls and boys sport. Mind you some fathers are very good at maintaining lobbying network even after school.
  8. NorthernSon

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    Hmmm, Spewn I concur with your wisdom.

    It is a shame that there is such a narrow window of opportunity for many boys as whatever the system there is never a level playing field on selections.

    If they are a late developer or hidden in boarding schools with no access to Sydney Club Junior rugby or in Country Division with a poor playing roster and are not able to shine when 14 -16, the odds of reaching their real representative potential are heavily stacked against them. If you look back particularly over the past 8 years with the ARU's funding of the school rep system and their heavy influence at the selection table. Then of course dont forget the influence of the NSW Schools coach who builds a team around his own school (Pappa 2010).

    The view of if he is good enough he will shine through just doesnt cover the base anymore unless you appear as an outside back in Year 12 and have some freaky attribute like speed (Luke Keary 2010) or are of the Beale and O'Connor class because of the pathway the ARU have created for the chosen few lucky to get picked up in NTS turn up on 90% of selected teams.

    Test Case 1 : ( Names removed to protect the victims of the system)

    If you have two talented hard working schoolboy forwards,

    Player (A) one full time boarder plugging away each week for the short 10 week GPS comp from age 14 -16 and eventually plays solid and excels in his 1st XV for 2years. No one from the ARU really noticed him early in his development and didnt get an ARU invite to NTS.

    and then have another boy Player (B) of similiar ability playing school and club rugby; has had an old man coaching and hanging around the ARU High Performance Unit key people like a bad smell (or someone with connections pushing his basket) at every age rugby carnival between U/14 -16.

    then the lad Player (B) will have a secure future involvement in the NTS program,
    then the lad Player (B) will have a secure future involvement in NSW & Aus schools,

    then the lad Player (B) will may either secure an Academy contract with a Province or if found out at Aus schoolboys level will join Player (A) in Colts with the odds against them as the next year of NTS graduates enjoy the proven but narrow pathway to rugby success.

    This scenario rings true for the vast majority of NSW schoolboy players with numbers 1 to 10 on their back
    footy-kid likes this.
  9. lily Vay Wilson (31)

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    I should have added this. There are alot of dodgy selections in schoolboy rugby. Always has and always will. What I should have added was that come time to play colts and then grade the talented will be noticed. In schoolboy football, as I've mentioned in previous threads AICES and CCC dont even have anyone on the selection panel.
    I just get sick of parents who are clearly delusional saying politics are the reason for non selection, when in reality their son or daughter just isn't good enough.
    dermo likes this.
  10. Spewn Alex Ross (28)

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    I completely agree with your last post. Although I also agree with Lily's beef about parents with no insight. The pathways to success and the pool to chose from should be expanded. Anyway, back to the topic.
  11. Spewn Alex Ross (28)

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    Geez Lee, the move tends to isolate a few as the usual suspects.
  12. Lee Grant John Eales (66)

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    We're rounding them up.
  13. CTPE Nev Cottrell (35)

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    Northern Son whilst I agree with many of your thoughts about the selection of NSW Schools teams your example of Player (A) overlooks the fact that many boarder boys, particularly in the U13 to U16 age groups do in fact play junior Club rugby and therefore get exposure outside of school rugby. Most play in the Sydney Juniors Sunday comp having played for their school in the GPS or CAS comps on Saturdays. Think about it, if you're a boarder, love your rugby and want to play as often as you can and at the highest level you can achieve, what would you rather do on Sundays in Winter - hang around the boarding house or get out and play more rugby? My understanding is that whilst the GPS and CAS schools may prefer that their players limit their Club rugby after Year 10, they go out of their way to encourage boarders and day boys alike to get involved in as much rugby as they want to play up to U16s including rep rugby for senior club and metropolitan zones teams and higher levels if warranted. Ultimately if the opportunities are available for boarders to play Club and rep rugby outside of school it comes down to the motivation of the individual just as it does for non-boarders.

    Any GPS or CAS player (boarder or day boy) who makes his schools first XV has been noticed somewhere. Very few would not have played some degree of club rugby and many of them would have played some level of rep rugby as well. In addition the ARU's Junior Gold Talent Centres in Sydney are open to any boy who plays at least one form of rugby, either school or junior club rugby although quite a few boys in the program seem to play both and the majority from the GPS schools are in fact boarders.

    As for pushy parents they exist everywhere - School rugby, Country junior rugby, Sydney junior club rugby and Senior club rugby - that's always been the case and will never change.
  14. Spewn Alex Ross (28)

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    The answer is unequivocally yes. Don't kid yourselves.
  15. lily Vay Wilson (31)

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    A player from CCC could score 50 points in the game at Knox against his opponent who dropped every ball and missed every tackle and that player if he was a player from CAS or GPS and the guy from CCC would still be ranked behind the other guy. This is because the selection process is flawed. Lee feel free to move this post if it should be in another thread. I happen to agree with Spewn and rugby parent on this one.
    If it hasn't been selected Jordan Meredith who also happens to be a very talented cricketer and SG Ball player from Manly is worth a look. He has been playing rugby for years so he doesn't play it like a league player and has pedigree as a 16s rep for either NSW schools or Sydney at the Aust Champs in 2009.
  16. crannie5

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    whats the players name?
  17. footy-kid Allen Oxlade (6)

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    how can this be so?
    shouldnt the selectors choose on performance, i know this goes back to people blaming politics but with school rugby one of the most reputable and succesful pathways to pro-rugby, it should be based on talent, not reputation.
  18. young gun Chris McKivat (8)

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    Not 100% certain on this, ie: who the player is, but he doesn't happen to be playing 2nd grade, not Colts, in a successful team, and is doing very well - also, he's still at school! I didn't see him play in the Aussie schools games, but isn't it possible that politics stopped from from progressing rather than enhanced? Two sides to every coin.
  19. Spewn Alex Ross (28)

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    That's where we depart in our opinions I'm afraid. I can't say whether things have changed over the last few years but I think it has. Schoolboy rugby pathways are now on the nose in my view. It isn't an even playing field for selection and hasn't been since I think 2007. I'd love to know if anything changed at about that time such as start of NTS or equivalent.
  20. lily Vay Wilson (31)

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    I will say it again for those who are new. Not every schoolboy rep team has a selector attached to it. Therefore they have nobody pushing for them come selection time.

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