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Subbies 2023!

Let it sing

Stan Wickham (3)
Div 2 prediction -

Lindfield v Briars - Briars should come out roaring but the class of Lindfield will show around the 40 min mark. Lindfield by 35+

Newport v UNSW - Newport are down on numbers but aim up and home ground advantage should aid their cause. UNSW will be too strong here though and win by 20

Hawkesbury Valley v Epping - Both sides have been hot and cold this year. Tipping Epping as they have more to play for and would love to squeeze into the top 4. Epping by 21


Herbert Moran (7)
So far:

Div 3
Clark Cup 1st Grade - Savers forfeit to Harlequins
Nicholson Cup Colts - Old Iggies forfeit to Old Barker

Div 4
Grose Cup 2nd Grade - Mac Uni forfeit to Rockdale
Grose Cup 2nd Grade - Wakehurst forfeit to Renegades

Good thing First Div aren't on this weekend or there would probably be another 2 Colts games gone by the wayside.

This is just what any club wants before the next two weeks are spent with a bye and a wet weather weekend.

Through the hands

Stan Wickham (3)
Just a thought regarding Savers. Heard about a month ago that the Manly Marlins were getting well over 100 blokes to their grade trainings. Do the math and that means 40 blokes aren’t starting in games each weekend. Eastern Suburbs field a 5th grade under Sydney Harbour 2nd grade, why would Marlins not come to some sort of agreement here with Savers? More footy for everyone and Savers could’ve somewhat avoided the poor season they’ve had.

The Ghost of Raelene

Mark Ella (57)
You’d need to get a group of guys at the Marlins that want to do it together for it to work. They paid their $400 to wear the gear and watch the guys their paying the wages of play at Manly Oval on Saturdays. Some would just say no when told your playing for Savers 2nd grade somewhere else in Sydney.

Then, if they were winning too many games subbies clubs would kick up a stink about that.

The logic makes sense but until Rugby in the whole of NSW falls into 1 system we have silos that some are full to the brim and we have no idea about the others


George Gregan (70)
^^^ Exactly.

The sport is falling down in part due to the multiple administrations, and cliques within those administrations, and clubs or schools within those cliques. They furiously gatekeep their patch and it is detrimental to player development and interest.

It is working in some fashion with Easts Colts 4 as Harlequins Nicholson Cup squad, and Easts 5th Grade as Harbour 2s. However there is no crossover; they operate as completely separate squads and it is a short-term solution at best.

They paid their $400 to wear the gear and watch the guys their paying the wages of play at Manly Oval on Saturdays.

At least that. For some of these guys it isn't even about getting playing minutes; just being with their mates and sinking piss.

Sounds good compared to actually running a club! ;)


Syd Malcolm (24)
Marlins - savers is the perfect place to have an alligned club system. Maybe once subbies falls apart and we are all playing under Sydney Rugby we will see something like it happen


George Gregan (70)
Marlins - savers is the perfect place to have an alligned club system.

I had lengthy conversations prior to this season with Savers about their plans, and being part of the Manly scene is right up there. They want their Juniors to grow and be strong. Some will go to Marlins, and they're fully supportive of that. Some will want to play Subbies. Again: a win.

The issue is what happens to disrupt that pathway in amongst all the other governance from Unions and Schools competitions.

We're not big enough for that.


George Gregan (70)
Maybe once subbies falls apart and we are all playing under Sydney Rugby we will see something like it happen

Subbies is basically a two-tier system at this point: First Division plus a couple of clubs like Lindfield and UNSW.

They've got the financial and administrative resources to run things off the field, and the players to be competitive on it. They tend to have history, facilities, juniors, and connections that allow them to maintain a critical mass. It fluctuates but this generally won't change.

Clubs below this are generally running on the efforts of volunteers, a decreasing sponsor base, and/or in areas that have been basically deserted by rugby. Every year is basically starting from scratch with recruitment & finances, and eventually the same people get sick of being stuck with it, and the club dies.

I'm not saying that big clubs don't have difficulties; the scale and angle of the issues might be different, but they still have significant advantages that aren't relatable to the small club experience.

From afar, it looks to me like Brisbane Subbies clubs are on their way out. Their Premier scene is large and hoovers up most of the talent. Subbies clubs are pretty much single grades that play against QPR 6th Grade sides of a Friday night. That's got a shelf life.

Perhaps that's where NSW Subbies will end up; First Division Clubs still playing 4 Grades + Colts on Saturday, with a Friday night comp for 1-2 Grade clubs.


George Gregan (70)
Addit: A series of Wallaby wins might be helpful in turning this around, *BUT* is only a sugar hit for sustainable recruitment; systems need to change.

park footy enthusiast

Bob McCowan (2)
Beecroft v Knox Old Boys: Undefeated until 2 weeks ago and now having back to back losses, injuries and Europe trips appears to be hitting the boys in green hard, meanwhile Knox are on a mid-season tear having won 4 in a row and are moving in the right directions for final. Am going to tip Beecroft to turn it round in the their first home game for a while with a close win. In other grades expecting Beecroft to maintain top position in 2nd grade with a win and similarly expecting Knox Colts to maintain their top of the table position with a win.

BOBS v Iggies: If you take out Manly this is a bottom of the table clash of 5th v 6th. With the top 4 making finals in a 7 team comp which becomes a 6 team comp with manly out the door 5th and 6th are actually closer to making finals then they should be. Of the two teams only Barker who is also the home team has a sniff of making the finals and this should get them over the line. Same logic applies in 2nd grade in another 5th v 6th class with BOBS needing to win and hoping beecroft win by greater than 7.

Looks like Knox overcame 4 cards, a very lopsided penalty count and a feisty local crowd to move to 5 on the trot out at Headen Park with a try at the death.

Iggies crawling to the finish line at this point copping a 70 point drubbing to the BOBs lads. Assuming old barker takes care of the Manly in two weeks time, there’s a block buster play in game for that fourth finals spot against Harlequins to close out the regular season, will be must see.

Let it sing

Stan Wickham (3)
Was out at Briars today and they run a fantastic show and very slick operation.

Even better where the classy displays from both Briars and Lindfield to show genuine care for injured players from both sides during the day and both clubs enjoying the Sydney sunshine and good rugby without the shit banter


George Gregan (70)
The problem with a Second Grade forfeit: all the guys you name on a bench of 15 decide they don't want to travel to Wakehurst for an indeterminate amount of rugby in First Grade.

It gets worse when two of your starters call in sick along with three of the backups the morning of. Throw in the four guys who just couldn't be bothered driving that far, and you're in a world of hurt.

We've done all we can to foster club spirit. Now it is just time to get the chainsaw out and start cutting dead wood.


George Gregan (70)
Big results today for Irish, turning Merrylands over in both grades. I thought Merrylands 2s were headed for an undefeated season.

Considering Irish 2s had to forfeit last week against Rockdale, that's an even more interesting result.


Chris McKivat (8)


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