Valleys Rugby (New 5th Region?) set for WRU meeting

Discussion in 'General Rugby Union' started by TRF_Cymro, Apr 17, 2012.

  1. TRF_Cymro

    TRF_Cymro Cymro The White

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    [​IMG]
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/rugby-union/17734141

    Their website: http://www.valleysrugby.com/

    I suggest that if you are interested then read the business plan: http://www.valleysrugby.com/pilot-business-plan . I have know about it for a while but forgot to post anything about it up. It makes for an interesting read.
     
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  3. lucky number 7

    lucky number 7 Senior Member

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    Down the Valleys...
     
  4. Saintjay

    Saintjay Senior Member

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    Erm not sure about this. The regions down south can't get a crowd let alone adding a 5th. Prefer to see 1404 and us up North get one and yes I know I am being a tad one eyed about it.
     
  5. ORothlain

    ORothlain Official Plastic Paddy

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    How much backing is there for this?
     
  6. TRF_Cymro

    TRF_Cymro Cymro The White

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    They raised over £25k in the first couple of weeks of existence and the MP running the show is making a push for it. There's apparently lot support for it and that's why the WRU have allowed them to talk to them.
     
  7. TrueSlawter

    TrueSlawter Senior Member

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    IMO the north needs a region a hell of a lot more than the valleys do.. in a ideal world I'd say yes.. but with fan numbers as it is and the fact I doubt they will be that competative (likewise NW but there aren't 4 other regions within ~2 hours drive to colwyn bay)
     
  8. Feicarsinn

    Feicarsinn Super Αdmin

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    There aren't enough players in wales!!!!!!!
     
  9. psychic duck

    psychic duck Senior Member

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    that's what I was thinking too, especially with the amount of players going to England and France now
     
  10. TRF_Olyy

    TRF_Olyy English Arrogance

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    They could the players that Blues just released.
    Martyn Williams is from Ponty, where they're going to be based.
     
  11. gingergenius

    gingergenius Senior Member

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    I don't buy the 'not enough players' argument. Regardless of how successful they are, there are enough players, and players being professional = a team that can be competitive even if they lose all the time.

    The question is money, and that is gained from popularity.

    I cannot understand how Swansea FC can fill Liberty full when, in a supposed 'rugby area', the Ospreys can't. So until the WRU and the regions sit down and sort out how to get attendances up (like in Ireland, a country of similar size but with even more distractions from rugby), I'd shelve any ideas of more regions. They need to look at their model and how it works for Ireland but not for Wales.

    I can't profess to be an expert but it must help that Munster/ Connacht etc. are historical regions, meaning people feel naturally inclined to support them anyway. Welsh rugby was always based on a club system like England's, since they have no historical provinces. Could Wales operate a licensing system like Super League whereby it would give x amount of RaboDirect licenses to teams like Bridgend, Neath, Swansea, etc? Or would this simply not work?
     
  12. dullonien

    dullonien Senior Member

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    I don't follow the Premiership closely enough to know which players are being overlooked by the current regions. Two big clubs being overlooked, from what I understand, are Ponty and Neath. How many players there would be capable of stepping up to regional rugby?

    I don't see how they'd find a full squad of 32 players of a high enough quality to compete in the Rabo12.

    This is also the completely wrong time to be setting up a new region. The WRU already have Rygbi Gogledd Cymru on the go in North Wales, I can't see them wanting to start another development region, especially considering how much trouble the regional game as a whole is already in Wales. If we had 3 or 4 strong regions, each getting good crowds and genuinely challenging for the HC, then I'd say go for it, but that simply isn't the case.

    The only way I could see a Valley's region going ahead now would be alongside a complete restructuring of the regional game, especially in the East. If Cardiff and Newport merged to form one region (about as likely as me shi**ing on the moon), there could be scope for a new Valleys region, with the players being shared + Ponty and Neath players getting a fair chance with Valleys rugby.

    This could leave four regions + the development region in North Wales with a more even spread of the traditional rugby heartlands in Wales. But I can't see anyone agreeing to something like that, so ultimately I can't see any way forward for the Valleys region.

    [/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Tahoma, Calibri, Geneva, sans-serif]I can't see the Super League system working, and tbh nothing would change. The only cities with sufficient facilities (stadia, training facilities etc.), are the locations of the current regions (Llanelli, Swansea, Cardiff and Newport), so it would be those four clubs basically, except they'd lose a substantial amount of their players back to the other clubs.[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Tahoma, Calibri, Geneva, sans-serif]Despite people always saying that Wales' national game is rugby, the reality is that it simply isn't. Football is by far the most popular game, and this is reflected in crowd attendances. Poeple will watch successful teams, and this was briefly evident when Cardiff Blues won the EDF and Amlin, when they moved to the new stadium they briefly had week in week out crowds of ~ 18,000. The provinces in Ireland took a long time to get going, and this was despite there already being existing provinces in place. For a long time crowds were poor, but winning teams have changed that. Ulster, Munster and Leinster have all been HC champions, and they are consistently challenging, this draws in the punters. Ireland's population is also much bigger to begin with, especially in Dublin, where Leinster is the only top sports team, and there is a population of over 1 million.

    [/FONT]
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  13. lucky number 7

    lucky number 7 Senior Member

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    The regions in Ireland work in my mind because of the historical definitions of them , indeed the rivalry between them stems from centuries of warfare between the provinces and in later years the GAA has moulded itself around the provincial structure so It's something that has been prevalent culturally in Ireland long before the rugby rose to prominence here.

    And although I'm no Welsh geographer can I assume that the rivalry between the regions doesn't inspire the masses to the degree that it does in Ireland?
     
  14. dullonien

    dullonien Senior Member

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    Talking from a personal point of view, I have no affiliation with any region. I support them all equally, and feel like I'm a fan of Welsh rugby as a whole, and not any specific region or club. I know plenty of Welsh fans who have similar views (especially those from mid Wales or North Wales. I'm sure this might be different for fans from South Wales who have always had a professional club to follow, but I don't think the rivalries between regions are as strong as they are between the clubs. This is one of the big problems, and it's not an easy one to fix.
     
  15. lucky number 7

    lucky number 7 Senior Member

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    Right , So the WRU need to set about making it a cultural thing.

    That will take many years.

    Ponty is a hotbed of Welsh rugby yes? ..Franchise?
     
  16. cyRil

    cyRil Senior Member

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    It's not too hard to grasp. Swansea is a poor area atm. Swansea City are a PREMIER LEAGUE football team, playing the likes of United, City, Chelsea and Liverpool on a regular basis.
    The Ospreys are an infuriating rugby team that have underperformed for years playing clueless, unattractive rugby for c.80% of the time and have now lost the majority of their star players/big draws.
    Can you see where the disparities lie?
     
  17. psychic duck

    psychic duck Senior Member

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    some rivalries are created through great matches

    for example Arsenal and Manchester United weren't particularly teams geographically next to each other, but during the Vieira Keane era, their matches had as much rivalry as a local derby
     
  18. dullonien

    dullonien Senior Member

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    Of course, but that takes time, a lot of it. Manchester and Arsenal have been two teams that have been around for a long time (have no idea exactly how long, and can't be bothered to look it up), and have both been competing towards the top of the table for a lot of that time.

    Of course rivalries will form within regional rugby, but it will take time (and probably new generations of fans) before it happens. It's important that the Valleys aren't a casualty along the way, hence this proposal.
     
  19. gingergenius

    gingergenius Senior Member

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    The Heineken Cup is the top level of rugby. But for a home game against the English champions this year, the stadium was 2/3 full, despite Welsh stars like Shane Williams and Adam Jones playing.

    The Premiership isn't quite the top level of football. But for a home game against Blackburn on the weekend, one of the most uninspiring teams/ places in the Premiership, the stadium was full, despite Swansea having 0 star players.

    I'll then add that rugby is supposedly the national sport of South Wales. And I'd wager that it's cheaper to go to rugby than it is to football, not that wealth typically matters since football is a nominally working class sport and up and down the country working class people turn out to support their teams still.

    Either rugby is not the no. 1 sport, or the Ospreys are doing something seriously badly (which we all gather they kind of are). But it's still surprising.
     
  20. cyRil

    cyRil Senior Member

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    You're not getting it I don't think.
     
  21. dullonien

    dullonien Senior Member

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    That would have been a sold out game a couple of season ago, but fans have gotten fed-up really. If the O's continue to play as they have in the last few weeks, and win, then the fans will return. Holley and co just dragged the team down with a frustrating playing style, and an unsuccessful one to boot. This is not my idea of fun, and it appears many other supporters agree. I often felt robbed of my time after watching an O's game on tv, I'd be bloody livid if I'd wasted my time AND paid good money to watch the drivel they were putting out.

    Also, as I said above, football is the number 1 sport in Wales, no matter what is often said. Aberystwyth FC have bigger crowds than Aber RFC etc. etc.
     
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