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Rugby News from unexpected places

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Spain are now appealing to the Court of Arbitration for Sport over their RWC exclusion...


Seems like a bit of a Hail Mary at this point. Which I understand as I actually think they've been hard done by here. Yes, they played an ineligible player but 1) the game he played in was never going to have any relevance to the end result. The Dutch were a guaranteed 5 points for every team this year and 2) The Spanish Union did follow procedure in collecting the required documentation assuming that those documents were in fact legitimate. They couldn't have known that the player and club/club officials conspired to doctor the documentation. I guess my point is, Spain were the 2nd best team in Europe and proved it by beating both Romania and Portugal. There is also the question of some very interesting eligibility questions around a few players from in particularly Scotland as to the time spent out of country during their eligibility periods.
 

The Ghost of Raelene

Trevor Allan (34)
It is a can of worms I reckon World Rugby will want shut down this close to a RWC. Could be a lot of good come out of it long term if they audited all teams.

Unfortunate for Spain if they have done all their checks and followed procedure as far as they know, but like doping charges they always fall back to you are still responsible even in 'mistakes'

Rae Rae
 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Okay, two new pieces of news.

First, WR (World Rugby) is looking to establish a Americas/Pacific tournament featuring the 3 PIs, Japan, the USA, Canada, Chile and Uruguay. The apparent goal here is for it to assume the role of a Rugby Championship 2nd Division with some kind of promotion/relegation arrangement in place. Which I would have to imagine would be less about the current 4 actually being likely to be relegated but more of a 5th 'qualifier' slot being opened. It would be split into two conferences based around the obvious with I imagine the winner earning the right to play in the RC in the future. Or at least if it actually happens this way the right to playoff against the team that initially win that right after the first year. Will be played during the same window as the RC and will require clubs to release players to compete. So they will be proper Test matches.

I actually don't mind it. I think the mix is quite telling in terms of both competitiveness and potential economic possibilities. Canada currently, well suck, but have a strong economy while the PIs are the opposite. If this does happen and does form a RC 2nd Div I would also like to the SANZAAR nations commit to playing two of the 2nd Div nations each annually so that over a 4 year period they would have played each of the 8 RC2 nations at least once.

Second, another day and more talk of another new competition forming. The recent expansion and professionalisation of the Korean League, the announcement of the semi-pro Taiwanese league the other day. The apparent to be announced initiatives in both Pakistan and Thailand of all places and now this. Crazy times.

This one has been doing the rounds in terms of rumours for a while but apparently a bunch of reps from a number of interested parties met in Cape Town recently to hash out plans for a new international franchise structure. SA will enter the Cheetahs, Griqua and Pumas alongside up to 2 sides from Spain, Baia Mare from Romania, the just announced Kava Blue from Zimbabwe, Namibia, Kenya, Germany (said to be from Frankfurt) and Italy. Oh, and a foreign based USA owned team. Not USARugby owned but by someone(s) based in the US. Supposedly to be launched in December. This appears to be a private venture which if so then go nuts. My only real issue is that it will likely directly compete with the RE Super Cup who after losing the Russian clubs have just added RC Batumi and the Romanian Wolves to their structure alongside the Black Lions and Tel Aviv Heat in the east and the Delta, Black Devils, Lusitanos and Iberians in the west.

I'm all for T2 nations exploring more competitive and professional ventures but I don't like the fact that there's now potentially two competing leagues. I'd prefer one larger one to be honest.
 
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WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Been a while since I posted in here. The Rugby Europe Super Cup is back under way with the Eastern conference again looking the stronger of the two. Both new teams the Romanian Wolves and RC Batumi seem to have seamlessly replaced the two Russian clubs that were disqualified due to the ban thanks to the war in Ukraine. The Black Lions are probably in the box seat to win the eastern conference with 3 wins from 3 so far but all of their games have been competitive.

In the western conference Portugal's Lusitanos currently sit atop of that conference with a 3 from 3 record but Spain's Iberians are right on their heals having only gone down to them 20-22 in Valladolid last weekend. The big improvers so far this season have been Delta out of the Netherlands who have put up two respectable performances against the southern rivals. The outlier have been the Brussel Devils who copped two heavy losses in their first two games but showed more fight in their third.

The Cup is being played in two blocs of 3 games this year with the finals in late November with the 2nd bloc kicking off on the 15th of October.

On to the Americas. There's been a fair bit of player movement in regards to MLR. Lots of Argentines coming into the league both on and off the pitch with Mario Ledesma announced as coach of the Dallas Jackals in the past week. There's still no word on the status of the Adam Gilchrist owned LA and Austin franchises. Austin was in the process of being sold near the end of last season while LA was very much up in the air.

Down south there's been speculation of the Colombian based Los Cafeteros making way for a 2nd Argentine base squad out of Tucuman. The Argentine Union had to come to Los Cafeteros rescue last season to prevent collapse and with the schedule moving away from the bubble of the Covid seasons to a true home and away the Argentine Union probably doesn't want to pay for 20+ players to be based in Colombia for 5 months.

However, on the flipside of that. In a recent interview discussing Los Condores RWC preparation Chile's HP Manager mentioned a rebranding of SLAR to Super Rugby Americas and in inclusion of American and Canadian franchises. No mention of who or how many but there's been mention of big news coming for about a week so this may be linked to that.
 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Apparently it will be a team from each of the US and Canada. Likely the two that competed in the challenge series against the Jaguars XV and Penarol earlier in the year. So the American (formerly Glendale/Denver) Raptors and the Vancouver (Uni of BC Old Boys) Ravens.
 

Adam84

Simon Poidevin (60)
Has lost a bit of speed, still good foorwork

885207E6-815A-483B-B7DC-E449F1F6477E.jpeg


 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
The 4th round of the RESC was played over the weekend. With a couple of surprising results. First in the west Lusitanos hosted the Iberians in their return fixture from round 3 in which the hosts Iberians lost narrowly to Lusitanos 20-22. This time round the Iberians turned the tables on their rivals with a 12-17 win in Lisbon. What's interesting about this is Lusitanos operate in much the same vein as Selknam and Penarol in SLAR which are national franchises featuring the bulk of their national team s while the Iberians feature players exclusively from just the three Castella y Leon clubs in the Division de Honor. Spain could very comfortably run two squads in the RESC at a competitive level possibly even three. In the other game in the west in what was the upset of the season so far the Brussels Devils defeated Delta at home in what is a huge turnaround in form with the home team comfortably winning 48-14. The west is still very much a two horse race but at least it's now a far more interesting conference to follow.

The east is getting very interesting. Batumi continue to show improvement adjusting the the standard overcoming the Wolves in Batumi 28-13. Which puts Batumi right in the mix to push for a finals berth. But in the upset of the round. Tel Aviv managed to overcome the undefeated Black Lions in Tel Aviv in a tough fought battle 24-18. The next two weeks in both conferences will be very interesting.
 

Members Section

Bob Davidson (42)
The 2022 Oceania cup kicks off tomorrow, PNG hosting Vanuatu. Just the 2 sides this year with the Solomon Islands being the 3rd side. All games played in Port Moresby. Shame the Cook Islands couldn't be apart of this event.
 

Members Section

Bob Davidson (42)
PNG defeated the Solomon Islands today 22-19 to claim the championship with a game today. Fair to say rugby is a long way behind league there was about 2 ppl in the stands. Still I believe with the talent & the size of the population they could one day be competitive with other PI.
 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Plans have been announced for Rugby Asia to look to emulate SLAR/RESC with the Grand League in 2024. Early plans are to have 8 clubs/franchises from a range of Asian nations. No exact details on who or what form it will take but it seems to be following a trend looking to create pseudo-national teams based franchises in order to help drive HP investment and performance. Might happen but also might not. Will be interested to see which nations put their hands up. Sth Korea and Taiwan are probably unlikely as Sth Korea are looking to expand and professionalise their domestic league to 10 clubs with opportunities to contract foreign players much like Top League structure in Japan. While Taiwan actually launched a 7 team semi-pro league just this year. So they'll probably look to focus on their domestic structures. Though Taiwan could also compete if the Grand League runs during the same window as SLAR.

I could see the likes of HK, China, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, India and the UAE all being interested. Kazakhstan has been mentioned as a potential candidate alongside Indonesia. Definitely something I'll be keeping an eye on.
 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
On the above the Asian based French Rugby blogger who runs the Asie Rugby site (which is actually a pretty solid source of information) mentions that it will be run during the same window as SRP (Super Rugby Pacific) in the first half of the year and that the goal will be for 11 nations (Sth Korea, HK, China, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, Kazakhstan and Singapore) will host at least a team each.

Back to Super Rugby Americas (formerly SLAR) alongside the two North American squads. Argentina will be entering a 2nd squad in the form of the Dogos XV from Cordoba. Apparently Tucuman are also interested in a squad but they aren't ready yet. Hopefully in the next season or two they can come on line. The would help provide a solid base of Argentine teams for the league. Chile and Uruguay are still looking to add another team a piece so there's still growth to be had in the Americas. Hopefully.
 

Members Section

Bob Davidson (42)
On the above the Asian based French Rugby blogger who runs the Asie Rugby site (which is actually a pretty solid source of information) mentions that it will be run during the same window as SRP (Super Rugby Pacific) (Super Rugby Pacific) in the first half of the year and that the goal will be for 11 nations (Sth Korea, HK, China, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, Kazakhstan and Singapore) will host at least a team each.

Back to Super Rugby Americas (formerly SLAR) alongside the two North American squads. Argentina will be entering a 2nd squad in the form of the Dogos XV from Cordoba. Apparently Tucuman are also interested in a squad but they aren't ready yet. Hopefully in the next season or two they can come on line. The would help provide a solid base of Argentine teams for the league. Chile and Uruguay are still looking to add another team a piece so there's still growth to be had in the Americas. Hopefully.

Raptors & a Canadian side or Mexican?
 

ruggy

Herbert Moran (7)

Not really an unexpected place :) wanted to share my Rugby Rewind with everyone here on GAGR. & if anyone does read this would love any sharing to help the channel out!

cheers everyone have a good Christmas.
 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Super Rugby can sue them for copyright or they allowed it?

They've actually offically announced the new format and name overnight. A couple of interesting things. There will be 7 not 8 teams with the Canadian team not making it to the finish line. No idea what happened there but considering no one I've seen comment on Rugby Canada in the past several years has anything good to say about them I'd suggest it has something to do with them.

Argentina will have two teams. The Dogos out of Cordoba are new and the Jags who will be renamed the Pampas out of BA. Apparently they're 3 other provence keen on entering in the future including Tucuman and Salta.

The branding. In the article I'm linking you'll notice the stark similarities to the SRP (Super Rugby Pacific) branding with good reason. SANZAAR has given permission for them to use it. Which suggests this is linked to the alliance. Or at the very least they are an interested onlooker with an eye to future potential crossover. The season will line up with SRP (Super Rugby Pacific) for the most part as well.

 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Looks like Argentina will be playing a RWC warm up match against Spain next year. Which is good to see. Spain should be in France if not for the deception of a player and their club. Would like to see a couple more nations look to do similar.

1672636521805.png
 

WorkingClassRugger

David Codey (61)
Looks likely a Miami based MLR (under the working name of Miami Sharks) will enter in 2024. The group is backed by a number of Argentine businessmen led by the founder and CEO of South American based ecommerce and payment platform Mercado Libre. It won't be short on the financial side of the equation. Tomas Cubelli is also apparently involved. This will be the 2nd Argentine owned and operated MLR club alongside the Dallas Jackals.

 
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