The way I see current pro club rugby problems are as follows: 1. Rugby needs to get rid of the cluttered club season. 2. Clubs should have constant player rosters (not the current situation where the best players are only there sometimes) 3. Fans should only have to support one club team in a season. 4. The minnow nations need sustainable professional clubs to grow. 5. Clubs from smaller nations would grow faster if they could play big name foreign clubs. 6. Fans want a season that is unpredictable and not stale. 7. Sponsors and TV networks would pay more for a larger global competition. 8. Sponsors want a prolonged competition that will hold the attention of the punters. 9. More professional clubs in a country means there are more professional players available for the national teams. 10. More professional contracts mean less players can be enticed away to other sports (especially important in Australia). In my opinion, the teams are already in existance to create a better semi-global club rugby competition, which is not only more sustainable in the SANZAR nations, but could help raise the competitive levels of Teir 2 nations throughout the Southern hemisphere. What would happen if you cut the Super 14 and had something similar to the Heineken Cup instead? Currently there are as follows: Australian Rugby Cup (8 Teams) Pacific Rugby Cup (6 Teams) Top League - Japan (14 Teams) Air NZ Cup (14 Teams) Currie Cup (14 Teams) These teams should compete in their respective national domestic competions along with the global club comp. Firstly, create two competitions: A. The top level Super Rugby Cup B: The second level Southern Rugby Shield. Each competition would include 24 teams. Comprising 4 pools of 6. Teams will play each other team in their pool both at home and away. This gives a total of 10 pool games, which will be spaced out across the local domestic season into 5 blocks of 2 games each. Following pool play, the top 2 teams from each pool will go through into quarter finals, semiâ€™s and a grand final. Super Cup qualification would be as follows: Pacific Islandâ€™s = 3 teams (Top 3 Pacific Rugby Cup teams) New Zealand = 6 teams (Top 6 Air New Zealand Cup teams) South Africa = 6 teams (Top 6 Currie Cup Teams) Australia = 6 teams (Top 6 Australian Rugby Cup teams) Japan = 3 teams (Top 3 Top League Teams) Total = 24 teams Southern Rugby Shield qualification as follows: Pacific Islandâ€™s = 3 teams (Bottom 3 Pacific Rugby Cup teams) New Zealand = 8 teams (Bottom 8 Air New Zealand Cup teams) South Africa = 6 teams (Next 6 Currie Cup Teams) Australia = 2 teams (Bottom 2 Australian Rugby Cup teams) Japan = 5 teams (Next 5 highest Top League Teams) Total = 24 teams The figures (used above) for qualification is based on a mixture of: 1. The current number of teams in the respective national competitions. 2. The relative strengths of the competions. 3. The need to promote the growth of the weaker nations. It is also likely that, if this was the way pro club rugby was organised in the southern hemisphere, the ARU could justify more ARC teams. This would mean a reshuffling of the qualification system to take this factor into account for future seasons. While these teams would obviously be a step down from current Super rugby, it would be a more significant step up from what they currently are in the local domestic comps. More players would also be exposed to a higher grade than they currently are. The Southern equivalent of the Heineken Cup would also provide constant knockout, high intensity rugby. But most importantly, attendances would increase for the ARC, NPC, CC teams to levels more similar to the NRL and A-League (10,000-15,000), thus making the stadiums being used currently far more acceptable and sustainable in size. A truely competitive domestic league would also attract a more tribal following from fans. Not the makeshift 14weeks following Team A, before switching concentration for 14 weeks to Team B. Put in place salary caps and a draft from the club grades to spread the current talent crop around evenly, and to entice younger players to still partake in club rugby. Adding expansion teams at this level is also going to be alot easier then adding Super Teams. It is not unreasonable to think that Adelaide could eventually have an ARC team, or Newcastle, or North Queensland. But these places will be waiting along time to have a team they can support at the highest club level of Australian rugby if the Super14 persists. This is the same for the Islands or Japan. The Islands will never be able to afford to host a Super Team (even a combined one) and the level of the heavily sponsored Japanese clubs are currently to weak to compete at Super level. Sports respond better to players they can relate and teams that are accessable, with local heroes who represent their area. Not teams that are based in only a few big urban areas. If NZ rugby is anything to go by, the Air New Zealand Cup boasts pretty decent crowds (ironically apart from the 5 Super Franchise cities), but the Super14 teams have been in very steady supporter decline for the last 5 years. Fans in the provinces cannot relate to Franchises and this comp appears to be struggling from a repeditive, stale calendar and over exposure of the sport. However, if the big international club games were spread throughout a shorter overall playing calendar, and the teams you playing each other were changing every year, then fans would be continuously interested in the competition. The interest generated for the club from the global club comp would then transfer to the same clubs in the local comp. Maybe I am optimistic, but I would sure love to watch a competition where a southern â€œHeineken Cupâ€ Pool A could possibly include: Western Sydney Rams Wellington Lions Savaii Samoa Western Province Kobelco Steelers Hawkes Bay Magpies (of course!!) I would find this far more interesting than another Waratahs - Lions Super 14 game. I believe that Super rugby, while is great at giving an elite few players higher level match experience, is essentially limiting the spread of rugby to other southern hemisphere nations, is stemming the possible growth of rugby globally and is pushing club rugby in the SANZAR nations into an unsustainable corner. But Iâ€™m sure others would disagree, and Iâ€™d love to hear what you thinks. Cheers.