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World Cup Warm-up Matches.

Which Tyler

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England v USA about to kick off in Exeter, and on ITV4
Kinda caught me unawares, as I've been mostly thinking about the Prem, and Worcester, with a background of the World Cup on the horizon.


Is it worth a subforum just for the women's game?

Ever more popular at international level, fully pro top tier in England now, and ever more fully pro international sides.
 

die_mole

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England v USA about to kick off in Exeter, and on ITV4
Kinda caught me unawares, as I've been mostly thinking about the Prem, and Worcester, with a background of the World Cup on the horizon.


Is it worth a subforum just for the women's game?

Ever more popular at international level, fully pro top tier in England now, and ever more fully pro international sides.
I was thinking about creating a thread for women's game in general after the women's bledisloe the last two weeks (Australia showed strength coming back to make the second test a close one). Maybe a subform with threads dedicated to international, six nations, and club would work. Usually we have a couple matches a year that generate conversation but that will probably pick up as the sport gets more resources.
 

Which Tyler

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England in red btw, if anyone's arriving late.

Great pick by Poppy, attracts defenders, and allows Hunt to go wandering against their grain, and largely without them noticing she's there.

Eng 5 - 0 USA
5 min
 

Which Tyler

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I was thinking about creating a thread for women's game in general after the women's bledisloe the last two weeks (Australia showed strength coming back to make the second test a close one). Maybe a subform with threads dedicated to international, six nations, and club would work. Usually we have a couple matches a year that generate conversation but that will probably pick up as the sport gets more resources.
I'm hoping the RWC will garner conversation, especially in Eng (favourites, massive increase in support for women's sport this year, and finally an actual professional league) and NZ (hosts)

It feels like equality to include all the talk alongsid the mens, but they also get a bit lost with no continuity between the threads.
 

Which Tyler

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And England score a breakaway try why I tap in the above with overly fat thumbs.
Drop kick conversion as the ball is blown off the tee after starting her run-up.

Eng 12 - 0 USA
9 min
 

die_mole

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watching on my phone as I work and watch Leeds on the big screen. England look awfully smooth. Probably going to be racing the clock.
 

Which Tyler

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33 points, 33 minutes
2 tries gone begging (Scarratt's fail was a bad one, 3 on 1 to her left. So passed right to the only Englishwoman with a defender anywhere near her)


It's feeling sorry for the USA - who are 5th in the world, and really should be better than this. It's not a lack of effort or skill from USA, were just creating so many linebreaks.

Are USA fully pro yet? I'm assuming so, but that's not how it looks
 

die_mole

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33 points, 33 minutes
2 tries gone begging (Scarratt's fail was a bad one, 3 on 1 to her left. So passed right to the only Englishwoman with a defender anywhere near her)


It's feeling sorry for the USA - who are 5th in the world, and really should be better than this. It's not a lack of effort or skill from USA, were just creating so many linebreaks.

Are USA fully pro yet? I'm assuming so, but that's not how it looks
most the team plays in England. A couple play with the sevens who are full-time. Then there is squad filler from the Women's Premier League which is amateur.
Probably more fully pro than our men's side. England I think are just in the middle of something good right now.
 

Which Tyler

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We are, but women's rugby is turning fully pro right now, and if you want to stay anywhere near 5th, you'll have to as well.
IIRC Ireland are the only Semi-pro team left in the 6N, and that will surely change soon, the NZ and Aus; I think Canada are about the same as yourselves there.

Equally, someone outside of England needs to start up a professional league structure.
 

die_mole

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I think the same thing that's happening to use in women's soccer is going to happen in rugby. We had a first mover advantage by being one of the few countries to play the sport competitively. Now that other nations that already have infrastructures for the sport are taking them seriously we are going to be left behind.

Edit: Would think the French would be capable of having a pro league but have no idea what they are doing. A women's Celtic league also makes sense but Wales and Scotland are terribly run and Ireland doesn't appear to care about women's rugby.
 

Which Tyler

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First yellow should have been a red - Charlie Ewels' special. Ali agrees with ref though.

Second yellow - I felt the ball carrier was in touch before releasing the ball, so knocking on a dead ball - but that was the only mitigation there.
 

Umaga's Witness

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England and france will be big time favourites; NZ throwing everything into catching up, including Wayne smith, because we are hosting the World Cup , but I think it's too late - it's too high a mountain to climb in a short space of time. England and france are just going to be fitter, stronger, and better organised. Going pro on World Cup year doesn't give the players time to develop.
 

die_mole

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Article about state of the women's game in Ireland.
Mentions possibility of a European champions Cup.
Ireland plans on an inter-pro this spring but it sounds to be wanted more the suits than the players. Players enjoy playing for their clubs and since the majority of the talent is in Dublin or has moved to Dublin players will have to drive from their clubs to go represent the province they were born in.
Players and the union are at odds over other scheduling things.

I've watched a game or two of the NPC in the background while working. Probably not universally the standard of the Super 15s but there is some talent there. Definitely a great structure to be able to plug players into it and having it on TV is a huge plus.
 

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Watched the highlights of NZ-Japan after bled 2 finished. It was a ridiculous score, 15 tries to 2. Some good attacking moves on show, made it look like Japan couldn't really run or make tackles

The girls were a bit disappointed to learn the world cup tickets are selling for $5 a game. I'm interested to see how much hype it gets after the opener
 

die_mole

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Watched the highlights of NZ-Japan after bled 2 finished. It was a ridiculous score, 15 tries to 2. Some good attacking moves on show, made it look like Japan couldn't really run or make tackles

The girls were a bit disappointed to learn the world cup tickets are selling for $5 a game. I'm interested to see how much hype it gets after the opener
yeah I think that's just going to be the way it is. The marquee matchups will have good attendance and the tournament fillers will struggle to give tickets away. Semi-finals and finals will be worth a watch, maybe one or two of the quarter finals. Other than that there will be lots of blowouts.
 

Which Tyler

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Yeah, for Pool A, I'd say that Nz v Australia is always worth a watch, in any sport - even though Aus really shouldn't trouble NZ in the slightest. Wales and Scotland are fairly evenly matches; but there won't be much interest in NZ, and we get to see them play each other every year in the 6N - which would be okay of they're playing to top the pool... but as is, they're both likely playing to avoid a white-wash.

Pool B is a real group of death, with nothing in it between Canada, USA and Italy - however, none of those match-ups is likely to get the local public particularly stoked.

Pool C has got England v France, which, like NZ v Aus is always worth a watch; but should be a stiffer test for the favourites, but Eng would still be heavy favourites - I'm sure this would get far more viewers if played in Europe.



TBH, and sorry for this, it's a problem for women's rugby at the moment anyway; exaccerbated by playing in NZ - where I don't think the populace will turn out to watch anyone but NZ, even the final if NZ somehow fail to make it there.
Women's rugby in England has been getting crowds well North of 10k this year, and they'd probably get close to filling twickers if England were involved in a RWC final (albeit with relatively cheap tickets); and I suspect you'd see crowds of 10k turn out in England for NZ, France, Wales and Scotland playing, and probably get close for USA & Canada too.

The crowds aren't there yet elsewhere, and nor is professionalism TBH (am I right in thinking England are the only team who've been actually professional for more than a year? certainly the only professional league).
 

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