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[November Tests 2017 EOYT] Scotland vs. Australia (25/11/2017)

RoosTah

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Just brain dead stuff from the Wallabies... I could tell within the opening 15 mins the Scots had outsmarted the Wallabies. They'd clearly done their homework on our sloppy cover down the left edge and kept exploiting it and the Wallabies inexplicably never seemed to work out what was happening. The red card definitely had an impact, but at the end of the day the Wallabies were just awful.

Hats off to Scotland though - the NH performances this series make for a mouth watering 6N. Shame it's so far away... could have sworn the 6N used to start more or less after these tours
 

AM_Bokke

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Well, I haven't watched this match yet (DAMN!) It's hard to stay off social media and wait until you can watch the matches.

I'll comment again after watching the match but I am not surprised by the result. The completely inexperienced Boks drew this wallaby team twice!

Australia has a good coach and some really good players but they do not have player depth. They played a very long season and traveled to Japan in addition to their usual SH and Euro jaunts. They are tired.

All of their experience will count toward something at the World Cup (Falau and Pocock will be there) but they really don't have it to be consistent within one 12/13 match season.
 

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Wikipedia said:
Stuart Hogg was named in the starting XV, but was injured in the warm-up.
Never heard of that happening before...

This first-half/shoulder-charge/red-card storyline is becoming cliche.
SBW is a recovering League player. What's Kepu's excuse?
 

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Never heard of that happening before...

This first-half/shoulder-charge/red-card storyline is becoming cliche.
SBW is a recovering League player. What's Kepu's excuse?
For some time I have considered Kepu something of a thug in the mould of Bakkies Botha or Richard Loe; an enforcer who takes his job too seriously.

I first started to notice his recidivist foul play and targeting of opponent's heads back in 2015 Super Rugby and again in that year's RC. This was followed through to the 2015 RWC. In the final, he could easily have been yellow carded at least three times for a variety of acts of dangerous and foul play tha included high swinging arms, late and high tackles and fingers around the eyes. He seems to have developed a tacking "technique": that revolves around swinging his arm at opponents' heads in a sort of "forearm punch or strike"The Late Jerry Collins had a similar style in his early career, and the AB selectors and coaches worked hard to eliminate it from his game.

I think the worst aspect of this incident for Australia, was that the clean out was completely unnecessary. The tackled player McMahon, has already placed the ball back. All Kepu had to do was come in over the ball and stand guard the way Enever (?).. The only thing Kepu succeeded in doing was getting himself sent off.
 

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Scottish rugby fans have been living with reality for more than a few years . Fantastic achievement by Townsend and Cotter to bring the game in Scotland so far on in such a comparatively short space of time . Fitness, skill and man management plus maximising on the choice of players qualifying on a residential basis are the essential core of future success. The reality is that the choice of players is much more restricted than for most of our opponents . The number of Registered Players ( per Wiki ) in each country tells much ! Scotland 38 500 ; England 1,990 988 ; Wales 79 800 ; Ireland 153 8323 and of course let us not forget Oz with 86 952 !
 

RoosTah

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Scottish rugby fans have been living with reality for more than a few years . Fantastic achievement by Townsend and Cotter to bring the game in Scotland so far on in such a comparatively short space of time . Fitness, skill and man management plus maximising on the choice of players qualifying on a residential basis are the essential core of future success. The reality is that the choice of players is much more restricted than for most of our opponents . The number of Registered Players ( per Wiki ) in each country tells much ! Scotland 38 500 ; England 1,990 988 ; Wales 79 800 ; Ireland 153 8323 and of course let us not forget Oz with 86 952 !
Kind of a deceptive number as most of the juniors in that pool tend to feed the NRL and not Super Rugby. Can tell you right now the number of guys I’ve grown up with myself and even kids of mates that play union and get scouted by big NRL clubs in their teens.

End of the day, what Scotland are building is impressive, but it’s your second biggest sport - Union ranks about 4 or 5 in Australia after Cricket, AFL, NRL and these days probably soccer too.

Put it to you this way - in Australia Tonga v England in the Rugby League World Cup got double the TV ratings of the highest rated match of the Bledisloe Cup this year... that’s a League match not involving Australia blowing the biggest union matches of the year in Aus out of the water.
 

The Alpha Bro

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Scottish rugby fans have been living with reality for more than a few years . Fantastic achievement by Townsend and Cotter to bring the game in Scotland so far on in such a comparatively short space of time . Fitness, skill and man management plus maximising on the choice of players qualifying on a residential basis are the essential core of future success. The reality is that the choice of players is much more restricted than for most of our opponents . The number of Registered Players ( per Wiki ) in each country tells much ! Scotland 38 500 ; England 1,990 988 ; Wales 79 800 ; Ireland 153 8323 and of course let us not forget Oz with 86 952 !
Think that might be Ireland's phone number rather than playing numbers!
 

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Kind of a deceptive number as most of the juniors in that pool tend to feed the NRL and not Super Rugby. Can tell you right now the number of guys I’ve grown up with myself and even kids of mates that play union and get scouted by big NRL clubs in their teens.

End of the day, what Scotland are building is impressive, but it’s your second biggest sport - Union ranks about 4 or 5 in Australia after Cricket, AFL, NRL and these days probably soccer too.

Put it to you this way - in Australia Tonga v England in the Rugby League World Cup got double the TV ratings of the highest rated match of the Bledisloe Cup this year... that’s a League match not involving Australia blowing the biggest union matches of the year in Aus out of the water.
This is kind of a silly post. Calling it the second biggest sport, even if that's true, assumes that all sports in all countries have some sort of equivalent system of descending popularity. In reality, it's hard to overstate the extent to which football dominates sports coverage and school teams UK wide and it's to a greater extent in Scotland.

It is impossible to measure Scottish viewing figures because almost all TV here is made for a UK audience, but it's evident rugby is not popular up there. They have two professional clubs. Two!

But in any case, it's besides the point. As rugby fans we all have to deal with our sport not making the headlines and 90% of the people we meet having never followed the game. What matters is how teams progress despite that situation and right now Scotland are doing that better than Australia.
 

RoosTah

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This is kind of a silly post. Calling it the second biggest sport, even if that's true, assumes that all sports in all countries have some sort of equivalent system of descending popularity. In reality, it's hard to overstate the extent to which football dominates sports coverage and school teams UK wide and it's to a greater extent in Scotland.

It is impossible to measure Scottish viewing figures because almost all TV here is made for a UK audience, but it's evident rugby is not popular up there. They have two professional clubs. Two!

But in any case, it's besides the point. As rugby fans we all have to deal with our sport not making the headlines and 90% of the people we meet having never followed the game. What matters is how teams progress despite that situation and right now Scotland are doing that better than Australia.
The post I was responding to was looking at the raw numbers of players and effectively making a claim based on that. I get soccer is a big deal in the UK generally and all that, but soccer doesn’t dip into your talent pool the way having a couple much larger and more organized contact football codes like League and Australian Football does in Australia.

For instance, there aren’t too many locks going through high school that a soccer coach is going to go and scout at rugby games to see if they’d be great strikers, but in the AFL states there are coaches doing that looking for good ruckmen and in the League states they’ll happily offer a contract to a lock that is just good in the contact areas.

That’s the difference - Rugby may get dominated by soccer in Scotland and the rest of the UK, but soccer might as well be cricket for the transferability of its skill set to rugby and vice versa so you don’t bleed talent to it like we do to the NRL and AFL.
 

Bruce_ma_goose

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The post I was responding to was looking at the raw numbers of players and effectively making a claim based on that. I get soccer is a big deal in the UK generally and all that, but soccer doesn’t dip into your talent pool the way having a couple much larger and more organized contact football codes like League and Australian Football does in Australia.

For instance, there aren’t too many locks going through high school that a soccer coach is going to go and scout at rugby games to see if they’d be great strikers, but in the AFL states there are coaches doing that looking for good ruckmen and in the League states they’ll happily offer a contract to a lock that is just good in the contact areas.

That’s the difference - Rugby may get dominated by soccer in Scotland and the rest of the UK, but soccer might as well be cricket for the transferability of its skill set to rugby and vice versa so you don’t bleed talent to it like we do to the NRL and AFL.
Besides, whilst Scotland have a limited playerbase due to decades of insular disinterest in spreading the game by the SRU, the way they poach players means you can add many thousands of players from England and Southern Hemisphere countries eligible through grandparentage and the whole world when you factor in residency! :p
 

RoosTah

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Besides, whilst Scotland have a limited playerbase due to decades of insular disinterest in spreading the game by the SRU, the way they poach players means you can add many thousands of players from England and Southern Hemisphere countries eligible through grandparentage and the whole world when you factor in residency! :p
lol that’s not fair - Sean Maitland’s accent is as Scottish as it gets!
 

RoosTah

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more emphasis on developing the game from grassroots level or in the case of Australia where league and Aussie rules are popular sports Union needs more savvy attention at club/super 15 level. Union is a global game ,league and Aussie rules aren't. ARFU would be better to focus on the entire spectrum with game of union rather than using league and Aussie rules as skill developing pools. In recent years it has stalled investment in Union by trying to recruit players from other codes of the game in the hope that it would somehow be beneficial to their 15s game... it hasn't been successful as is evident with the demise of the standard of their national rugby union team. There may be one or two brilliant players that can make the switch but these are few and far between!
Very tough ask for a code that is effectively bankrupt in Australia and just had to cut back the number of pro teams it runs... the trouble with the idea of increasing grass roots investment is it tends to just help League because Union is a pay TV sport with almost no profile among most of the public and now even fewer pro pathways for aspiring young players. Will get a little long to go into, but the game has massive structural issues it isn’t addressing and that’s killing it more than poaching a couple big name League stars ever has.
 

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Well played Scotland, it was the result I feared after Australia's game against England, and well before Kepu was RC for his act of thuggery, the writing was on the wall. The Wobblies were pretty awful, but that shouldnt take away from what was a great game by Scotland, I have never seen them in such good form and it augurs well for the RWC to see the NH teams looking better than ever in the past. Kepu should get a long ban for his blatant and deliberate attack on an opponents head, its right up there with some of the dirtiest players the game has seen. Very disappointing.

There are not many things to say about the Wobblie performance, and most are negative anyway, so I think I will leave it there and enjoy the break from rugby for a few months!
 

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Some people in Union here are switched on, but that sadly doesn’t include the jokers who run the game...

The main structural issue the game faces is actually Super Rugby; its both the key source of funding to the game here and its biggest handicap. That’s because Super Rugby is cable TV exclusive (and cable has only a 30% penetration level in Australia) and because it’s international half the games are on over night, meaning that the code only gets two days of prime time exposure and that exposure is limited to the 30% with cable TV (and most have it for additional AFL sand NRL coverage).

Basically that translates into very little public interest or profile, which is why outside of Sydney or Brisbane, most papers barely cover even the Wallabies (a bit like London papers barely bothering to mention the England League team).

That’s what I mean by major structural issues. The code is up against two contact football codes that are on public TV 4 days a week and offer a combined 32 pro teams with pro pathways compared to Union’s 4
 

RoosTah

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Nothing new...and in fact there would be nothing worse for the game of union than free to air rugby union in Australia. Union has never had any desire to be favoured by the masses in Australia and rightly so...that is what made the Wallabies world beaters in the first place..it is the global audience (viewership not bums on seats in stadiums) that determines the success of the home unions not vice versa. No doubt the ARFU has at its disposal the means to ensure the standards of the game are maintained (in this case raised). The International viewership is there its just waiting for ARU to get moving on the motion and in the process it will bring fans back to the stadiums. Aussie rules and league have no appeal globally have very little scope to be developed globally...There still is and always will be a loyal following as far as rugby union is concerned in Australia, its a "player issue" nothing "structural" about it..if you have the right players playing the right "brand" of rugby networks, viewership, politics all fall into place...
Mate you’re kidding yourself if you think the game doesn’t want wider appeal in Australia. That was the whole point of their League poaching raids! As for international audiences - they’re comforting and all, but they don’t really pay the bills. Just ask soccer in Aus. More people in the region know who the socceroos are over the Wallabies or Kangaroos, but that doesn’t translate into much money wise for the FFA.

There’s also just the optics of constantly empty stadia at big international matches. The fact the Wallabies can’t sell out Springbok or AB matches anymore is embarrassing as heck and I can assure you that Rugby Australia aren’t exactly taking comfort from that level of public disinterest when 15-20 years ago they were playing to packed houses and getting strong viewing numbers and juniors growth.

The myopic private school boy focus of the game and its limited reach are no way to develop a talent pool and that’s shown in th Wallabies results over the last decade. It’s no secret that in NZ the game is embraced by all levels of society, meaning they get players beyond the products of a few heavily pampered private schools and so tend to have greater diversity of backgrounds in their makeup.

If you think the sport’s limited and posh look are doing it some sort of benefit in Australia, then you’re kidding yourself and you need to look at our results. Sure, we punched above our weight in the 90s when the game was grappling with professionalism and we adapted quicker than most, but those days are long gone and the competition from our other contact codes is far fiercer and vastly better resources than it was back then too
 

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the Union people in Australia have always been a fairly switched on bunch and I don't think the "structural issues" are as embedded as you think they are. Australia has won the trophy on two previous occasions and many might say they should have won it on another two by now! Rugby union is a global game and no doubt very popular and growing by the hour. The issue is not with the respective Unions as such but rather with the governing body in world rugby who need to ensure that the game is developed the right way and matures in those developing countries at a rate which doesn't sacrifice fundamental principles/integrity of the game ....so that it doesn't end up with the "structural" problems FIFA now finds itself in!
Oh man, the management in Australia is absolutely ******. People have been screaming for blood at the serious mismanagement that has seen us squander a healthy surplus post RWC03 to consistent deficits and massively declining participation and attendance. They are the most incestuous, incompetent bunch of fucknuckles ever to hold down a job. The structural issues are just about to kill the game. We are dead broke. We have already wound up one Super team with the rest projected to make losses this year and with our TV deal about to end with the very real likelihood that it won't be renewed. We are very seriously looking at going bankrupt within the next 5 years.

If you are counting on Australia bouncing back within the next 10 years, you are going to be unpleasantly surprised.
 
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free to air television and subscription internet dongle based platforms will not fill the void. Global sports competitions are grappling with an unbundled group of confused telco 's who have been battling to fuse "quality content" across multiple platforms and the result has been a drop in the standard of that so called "content" or lack there of when it comes to "original content" If you exponentially increase the subscriber base this way the result is an increased viewership accessing a rapidly diminishing "glut" of mediocre content. There needs to be a strengthening of the legislature governing the accelerated development of technology where it demands it otherwise the notion of the "viewership" as a market for the networks will be destroyed....and to large extent already has been!
Umm, what?
 

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Umm, what?
I think he's trying to say something like:

Traditional broadcasters are losing their monopoly on broadcasting and thus the rights they currently possess are suddenly worth less. Therefore, they are not able to pay as much for those rights, meaning sports that are solely reliant (Rugby in Aus) will seriously struggle. Any kind of streaming service is unlikely to replace that lump-sum payment from broadcasters.
 

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I don't know a lot about Australia but it's interesting to think about what Union needs to do differently to be more financially secure. I personally don't understand the Free to Air argument. The future of content is that it is paid for directly by the consumer. I sort of get that union might need the exposure that free to air would provide BUT Australia has already won two world cups and played in the most recent final. Does union really need more exposure then that? How does a sport get more exposure then that?

It appears that union has always tried to be the "premium" sports product trying to best leverage its private school heritage and international scope. This has basically worked for soccer in the States (middle class not private school) and it seems like a decent enough approach for rugby to take. I guess it just hasn't been sustainable.

Rugby is very approachable with both women's and sevens varieties. Embracing both is the future of the sport. Aren't some parents getting turned off by violence in league?

I personally think that Super Rugby will be much better next year. Hopefully it will show some modest growth and Australia can build from there. I actually thought that TV ratings were up last year. Is that wrong? Ireland coming next year should also help. Italy and Fiji were just not winners this year from a fan engagement perspective. And why did Italy play in Brisbane and Fiji in Melbourne? Shouldn't it have been the other way around?

In theory, I can see how ditching South Africa would help Australia in Super Rugby from a time zone perspective but South Africa and Argentina give Super Rugby access to the more established European and American spectator sports markets. Total revenue for the comp would surely slip without them. I'm not sure how less revenue for Super Rugby would help union in Australia.
 

AM_Bokke

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I think he's trying to say something like:

Traditional broadcasters are losing their monopoly on broadcasting and thus the rights they currently possess are suddenly worth less. Therefore, they are not able to pay as much for those rights, meaning sports that are solely reliant (Rugby in Aus) will seriously struggle. Any kind of streaming service is unlikely to replace that lump-sum payment from broadcasters.
Yeah but all sports have that problem. That's not just rugby in Australia's problem. NFL and EPL viewership are both down.
 
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